Detroit Regional Chamber, JB&A Release Seventh Annual Leadership Survey Findings

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 Mackinac, Mich., June 2, 2010 — In conjunction with the Detroit Regional Chamber’s 2010 Mackinac Policy Conference, John Bailey & Associates, a Lambert, Edwards & Associates company (JB&A) conducted its annual Leadership Assessment survey of the region’s business community’s thoughts and perceptions regarding public policy and the state of the economy in Michigan.

 
The survey results revealed several key findings and will be used to augment the Mackinac Policy Conference’s agenda and ensure the conference addresses and drives discussions about the issues the business community finds urgent and important.

“The state of Michigan and more specifically, Detroit is at a crossroads as we begin to see the state’s economy turnaround,” said Sandy K. Baruah, president and chief executive officer of Detroit Regional Chamber.  “It is our intention that the results of this poll will spark conversations at this year’s Mackinac Policy Conference about how to take action on furthering the turnaround by generating jobs, implementing education reform and the raising awareness of the business community’s priorities as we head into monumental election year for Michigan.” 

Highlights from this year’s survey include:

· 73 percent believe Michigan business climate will be stronger in five years from now. Optimism is rising, as only 70 percent answered “stronger” in 2009 and 66 percent in 2008.  80 percent also feel Detroit is moving in a positive direction under Mayor Bing. 

· Of those who answered ‘yes’ to upgraded and increased trade capacity with Canada, 43 percent wanted the bi-national Detroit River International Crossing (DRIC) project to facilitate a new bridge between Detroit and Windsor. 

· 73 percent feel that Michigan’s trade relationship with Canada is very important. Of those who answered ‘yes’ to upgraded and increased trade capacity with Canada, 43 percent wanted the bi-national Detroit River International Crossing (DRIC) project to facilitate a new bridge between Detroit and Windsor. 

· When asked about their top health care concern, 38 percent of respondents chose “high cost” followed by 20 percent choosing “the impact of the uninsured on our health care system.”  In 2009, 52 percent chose “high cost” followed by 24 percent choosing “the impact of the uninsured on our health care system.”

 · Half of all respondents do not support Gov. Granholm’s proposal to expand the state sales tax to services in exchange for lowering the sales tax from 6 percent to 5.5 percent.

 · When asked about the general election in November and asked to choose from all candidates, Oakland county Sheriff Mike Bouchard led slightly with 28 percent, Congressman Pete Hoekstra with 27 percent and Speaker Andy Dillon with 13 percent.

 · Identical to the 2009 poll, respondents ranked their budget priorities in order of importance as follows:

K-12 Education
Job Creation/Growth
Higher Education
Health Care
Transportation
Natural Resources/Environment
Tourism
Corrections

 “This poll gathers the insights of some of the Detroit region’s brightest and most influential business leaders,” said John Bailey, chairman of JB&A. “These insights will lead to much needed dialog that has the potential to ignite change in Detroit and throughout the state.”

 To view the entire results of the 2010 Leadership Assessment Poll, please visit mpc.detroitchamber.com or www.lambert-edwards.com/assets/2010_MackinacConf_LeadershipSurvey.pdf

About the Detroit Regional Chamber’s 2010 Mackinac Policy Conference

At the Mackinac Policy Conference – the Detroit Regional Chamber’s annual event that brings together Michigan’s business community – we must come together to think differently, take risks and execute a new vision for Michigan. The conference provides access to Michigan’s top business professionals, legislative leaders, corporate CEOs, entrepreneurs, young professionals and veteran regional champions. The 2010 conference will celebrate 30 years of moving Michigan forward.  The conference will take place June 2-5 at the historic Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island. For more information please visit, mpc.detroitchamber.com.

About the Detroit Regional Chamber

With over 20,000 members and affiliates, that employ over three quarters of a million workers, the Detroit Regional Chamber is the largest chamber of commerce in the country.  The chamber’s mission is carried out through business attraction efforts, advocacy, strategic partnerships, valuable benefits and quality products and services to members.  For more information please visit detroitchamber.com.

About JB&A, an LE&A company

The recent acquisition of John Bailey & Associates by Lambert, Edwards & Associates makes the new company the only true statewide public relations firm, with offices in the top three metro markets – Detroit, Lansing and Grand Rapids. LE&A/JB&A provides counsel and implementation for clients in the public affairs, health care, automotive, investor relations and consumer sectors.

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