A Brief History of Michigan’s Economic Development Programs

Michigan made significant competitive gains with the elimination of the state’s industrial personal property tax starting in 2016 and expected to be fully phased out in 2023, savings manufacturers more than $500 million per year and totaling about 2.8 billion since its inception in 2016.

Michigan’s nation leading economic development program, known as MEGA, created in 1995, ended in 2011 and the state moved to a new corporate income tax with a rate of 6%, which now ranks 20th in the nation in 2021 by the Tax Foundation. While Michigan currently does not have an economic development program designed for large job and capital investment, programs exist for smaller targeted investment.

Michigan is large manufacturing state, ranking 3rd in manufacturing output as percentage of GDP, fourth in manufacturing employment and number one in auto manufacturing strength, and according to Business Facilities 16th annual State Rankings Report. Michigan has more work to do.

Incentives programs and resources

Michigan has established several state and local economic development resources that provide support for companies investing and expanding their operations and workforces in Michigan communities. Some of them include:

Good Jobs for MI program

The Good Jobs program sunsetted in 2019 and is pending legislative reauthorization. The program would provide an incentive in the form of a return of state personal income taxes for companies that create hundreds of new jobs in Michigan.

Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF)

Promotes economic development in Michigan.

Incentives through the MI Economic Development Corp (MEDC)
  • For internal, on-the-job training
  • For aid in deciding where to locate a facility
  • For locating facilities in disadvantaged areas
The Michigan Business Development Program (MBDP)

An incentive program available from the Michigan Strategic Fund (MSF) in cooperation with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). Designed to provide grants, loans and other economic assistance to attract and retain businesses in Michigan.

Jobs Ready MI Program

Created by the MSF to meet the talent needs of companies that are expanding or relocating to Michigan. The program is designed to be flexible in how it addresses the costs associated with recruiting and training workers for high-wage, high-skill and high-demand jobs.

Going PRO Talent Fund

Awards funds to employers for training, developing and retraining current and newly-hired employees. Training must lead to a credential for a skill that is transferrable and recognized by industry. This MMA-supported program has awarded more than $138 million for employer-driven training since its inception in 2014.