2018-07-05 / Business

In brief

MEDC names new senior vice president, marketing & communications

LANSING — The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) announced last week that Doug Kuiper has been appointed senior vice president of marketing and communications for the organization. In his new role, Kuiper will lead MEDC’s communication strategy and execution of marketing initiatives, including the state’s Pure Michigan tourism campaign and PlanetM mobility campaign, and serve as a key liaison to stakeholder groups and state and local partners. He began his new position July 2.

Kuiper arrives at MEDC from Ilitch Holdings, Inc., where he has served as vice president of corporate communications since 2014. During his tenure, he led strategic communications, marketing and community relations initiatives across the organization. including the launch, construction, and opening of Little Caesar’s Arena located in The District Detroit, a $1.4-billion public private partnership integrating commercial, residential, and entertainment developments in the heart of the city near Comerica Park, The Fox Theatre, Little Caesars Arena, and more.

Prior to working for Ilitch Holdings, Kuiper was the vice president of marketing and communications at Compuware Corporation, where he directed one of the most successful direct business development campaigns in company history. He also played a central role in Compuware’s successful global rebranding.

Kuiper is a graduate of the University of Michigan and holds a bachelor’s degree in English Literature. He also has a master’s degree in English Literature from Wayne State University. The Michigan Economic Development Corporation is the state’s marketing arm and lead advocate for business development, job awareness and community development with the focus on growing Michigan’s economy. For more information on the MEDC and its initiatives, visit www.MichiganBusiness.org. — R.S.

Michigan officials report housing shortages

ANN ARBOR — Many local governments in Michigan are reporting a housing shortage, according to a survey from University of Michigan researchers. About 40 percent of local officials say they have too little single-family housing and nearly half say their county has too little multifamily housing. Some analysts note that rising mortgage rates and competition over low inventory are driving up prices for home-buyers in every sector, particularly for first-time or entry-level buyers. To deal with the shortage, some local jurisdictions say they are changing policies to boost housing construction.

The data come from the Michigan Public Policy Survey, an ongoing poll of Michigan's 1,856 local governments conducted by CLOSUP. The fall 2017 survey received a 76-percent response rate with results from 1,411 jurisdictions.

Among the survey's key findings, is that over half (52 percent) of local leaders reported that housing stock is out of date and 53 percent report that they have housing stock that suffers from blight, half of county leaders say there is too little entry-level housing; and 53 percent of city leaders say there is too little mid-range housing. There is sizable support among local leaders for a range of potential actions the state government could take to help improve housing supplies statewide. Researchers say that addressing housing shortages can help not only potential owners and renters, but also increase local government revenues from property taxes, create new jobs in the residential construction workforce and decrease blight. — R.S.

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