[This post is written by Katie Fritz, CEDAM’s Policy Associate.]

While there are many guides available to the hundreds of candidates running for statewide office in Michigan this year, few include candidates’ views on CEDAM’s core issues. So we made our own.* We contacted every major-party candidate for Michigan’s House and Senate and invited them to answer the following questions:

  1. What are your top three priorities if you are elected?
  2. What are your state budget and spending priorities, and how would you adjust revenue and expenses to support these priorities?
  3. How can the state government help strengthen Michigan’s communities?
  4. How can the state government help increase the availability of quality affordable housing in Michigan?
  5. How should Michigan address the foreclosure crisis?
  6. How can the state government help Michigan’s families achieve lasting and sustainable financial security?

We asked similar questions to our candidates for U.S. Congress. Many candidates shared their time and views with us, and we have published their responses verbatim. We also attempted to publish the official campaign website for each candidate, whether we heard back from them or not, so you can explore their views and experience in more depth.

So what can you do?

  • Get informed! In addition to reading CEDAM’s candidate guide, we encourage you to check out guides published by some of our nonprofit partners in the Michigan Participation Project. The Participation Project site also maintains a list of upcoming candidate forums around the state and a wealth of information for both voters and nonprofits.
  • Share these resources with other voters, including your clients if you are a nonprofit.
  • Contact your candidates, thank them for responding to CEDAM’s questionnaire (if they did), and invite them to learn more about community economic development. If you are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, check out election year guidelines first.
  • Vote, but don’t stop there. Stay tuned for new CEDAM events and toolkits in 2011 that will help you build your relationship with your elected officials.

*Disclaimer: CEDAM is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and does not endorse or oppose any candidate or party. The information we provide is intended solely to help Michigan residents learn about this year’s candidates in a non-biased way. To learn more about federal guidelines for nonprofits, visit the Michigan Participation Project’s guide.

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