New Business Study

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Tax breaks and educated workers are two things any good company looks at when thinking about re-locating. Unfortunately, a new study out says Michigan isn't doing so hot on the educated worker part.

"If [Michigan] doesn't have an educated workforce that does the jobs, new businesses are not going to come to our state," said Ed Sarpolus, vice president of EPIC-MRA.

The study was done by Western Michigan University and EPIC-MRA, a Lansing-based marketing firm.

"This is a wake up call for Michigan," Sarpolus said.

Almost 1,200 new business leaders took part in the survey representing five states: Michigan, Illinois, and Ohio here in the Midwest. Also included were California and Massachusetts, the two states attracting the most new business in the country.

Of the five states Michigan finished fourth as a state conducive to new business.

The study shows that business leaders say an educated work force is far more important than having favorable tax laws.

In California, 80 percent of respondents said an educated workforce is “very important.” In Michigan, only 52 percent.

In the category of "being known for its well educated work force," 81 percent of respondents say Massachusetts is one of the best.

Only 42 percent say Michigan is one of the best.

Sarpolus said the only way to get back on track is to double Michigan's number of college graduates.