State Leaders And Cadillac Businesses Discuss Future Of Economy

Leaders from all over the state were in northern Michigan for the Cadillac Chamber of Commerce Economic Breakfast Wednesday morning.

They teamed up with area businesses to talk about the future of the local economy.

“It gets us on the same page, brings other partners together, and makes some introductions; so that we can all collaborate and go in a lane together,” said Caitlyn Berard, president of the Cadillac Area Chamber of Commerce.

The pandemic has affected many factors in the economy, including inflation, employment and housing.

“I think it’s important for all our industries to get together and just take a moment to look at what our current situation is, of our economy, in our services and businesses,” said Mike Kelso, executive director of the Cadillac Area YMCA.

One of the guest speakers was Jim Robey, an economic forecaster and President of Robey Analytics. Robey broke down the past, present, and future of our economy.

Many business leaders said inflation and lack of employees are two of the biggest factors limiting local economic growth, as well as childcare and affordable housing.

“The first step in the right direction is identifying the problem, and making sure that we are all on the same page,” said Henry Wolf, Northern Michigan Chamber Alliance executive director. “A lot of what we discussed here today was identifying problems at the local level, so that we can bring them to our legislatives at the State level.”

While there’s no clear end in sight to other factors such as the Russian invasion on Ukraine and the impact of COVID-19, local experts remain hopeful for the future of the economy.

“Here in northern Michigan, there’s power in numbers when we all come together and unite for a certain cause,” said Wolf. “We discussed a wide range of issues today but I think, most importantly, if we continue to focus on attainable housing, affordable child care, and workforce development, we’re all rowing in the same direction. We’re going to make progress.”

Categories: Michigan This Morning