Posted by 07 April 2016
Welfare rolls are declining in Michigan, with different explanations for why. According to the statewide news site Mlive, there are 216,173 fewer people collecting welfare in Michigan than in 2011. Of these, 32,090 have been thrown off the rolls by 2011 law that removed loopholes from how long a person could collect cash benefits. Other bills in that same package tightened up procedures such reducing exceptions to welfare work-or-study requirements, cross-checking arrest warrant and criminal record databases for people who apply for food stamps and other benefits acquired by having a state “Bridge Card,” and more.
But Mlive also acknowledges (barely) the impact of a growing Michigan economy, for which the figures are even more striking. According to the Mackinac Center’s James Hohman, Michigan’s February unemployment rate of 4.8 percent was below the national rate of 4.9 percent for only the second time since the year 2000. (The first time was last July.) The total number of Michigan residents working in non-farm jobs was 4.3 million as of January, up from 3.8 million in 2010.
That means the increase in the number of people working is twice the number of those who are no longer collecting welfare. The figures give credence to old political line “the best welfare program is a job.”