11. The State, through its Department of Talent and other agencies, should help facilitate the creation of more public awareness campaigns highlighting the immediate career opportunities in skilled trades and the construction sector
12. Michigan Works should create a grant program that enables small business associations to retain HR coordinators to facilitate the placement, training and hiring of unemployed individuals, veterans, returning citizens, and others with their member companies. Most small builders and contractors don’t have the resources and staffing ability to leverage existing training and placement programs 13. Go-Pro funding should be allowed for a one time use by a building trades CTE program for the purchase of land to build a home upon, seeding a self-funding mechanism (upon the sale of the home) for such education programs
It is fundamental that communities recognize the changed industry dynamics in housing. Those that do and make the connection that housing is an economic development issue (that review and align their land development policies, fees, and ordinances to become examples of best practices) will have a distinct competitive advantage over other communities in the future. Those that don’t will find themselves stagnant or in economic decline, and experience fewer and fewer housing opportunities for their residents.
While the Home Builders Association of Michigan will diligently advocate for the implementation of the recommendations outlined in this report, the issues identified herein illustrate that there is no easy fix that will, in the short term, stimulate housing investment broadly across the state. However, as more and more local officials, elected leaders, economic developers, educators and the citizens of our state recognize the growing housing challenges their communities face, we believe this report will serve as an important resource for discussions and actions they can take and support to bring about much needed change. l