We've come a long way in Michigan over the past two years. We've created more and better jobs, helped schools in need, balanced our budgets, paid down our debt and reformed our tax system.
The results are plain to see.
Today, Michigan has the sixth-fastest growing GDP in the nation. We went from losing more than 760,000 jobs in the past decade to gaining 141,000 jobs since I took office. Unemployment has dropped by 4.9 points since its August 2009 peak, our income growth is eighth-best in the nation, our economy is at a ten-year high, home sales have increased, and our tax system is twelfth-friendliest in America.
But there's more that we must do to continue the reinvention of our great state. Much more.
Yesterday I signed a "Freedom to Work" law to give workers a choice on whether or not they want to join a union. That will give Michigan's hardworking women and men the power of choice, and it will help make Michigan more competitive -- and that means a stronger economy with more better paying jobs.
But that's just one law -- one reform of many that is helping Michigan be the comeback state.
What's next? We will move forward on regional transit - a project 40 years in the making - that will make Southeast Michigan competitive with other major metropolitans in the 21st Century. Helping connect southeast Michigan will attract talent and help make Metro Detroit's economic engine run on all cylinders. We're also re-tooling Blue Cross to improve health and wellness in our state, reforming education to focus on kids learning, revitalizing our cities, and protecting our Pure Michigan environment. We're also connecting talent with opportunities -- and we're going to build a new bridge to Canada, bringing 10,000 new construction jobs to our state.
We're doing this together with relentless positive action, and we're making Michigan the best place in America to live, work and play.