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WHEREAS, Section 1 of Article V of the Michigan Constitution of 1963 vests the executive power of the State of Michigan in the Governor;

WHEREAS, Section 4 of Article V of the Michigan Constitution of 1963 authorizes the establishment of temporary commissions or agencies for special purposes;

WHEREAS, both Michigan's core manufacturing industries and the new technology-based enterprises we seek to grow in the 21st century demand the talents of an increasingly educated workforce;

WHEREAS, two-thirds of the jobs that will be created in the next decade will require post-secondary education and training;

WHEREAS, those earning bachelor's degrees can be expected to earn $1 million more than those with high school diplomas over their lifetimes, while those with associate's degrees can be expected to earn $400,000 more than high school graduates;

WHEREAS, the businesses we hope to attract to Michigan cite the availability of a skilled workforce as a chief factor in determining where to make job-creating investments;

WHEREAS, Michigan cannot hope to maintain its economic vitality and the quality of life of its residents without making a dramatic increase in the number of our citizens who attain degrees and other credentials that link them to economic opportunity;

WHEREAS, that opportunity must include the ability to earn degrees and other credentials linked to success in our knowledge-based economy;

WHEREAS, the Lieutenant Governor's Commission on Higher Education and Economic Growth, created by Executive Order 2004-32, recommended that Michigan attempt to make post-secondary education universal over the next decade and greatly expand access to baccalaureate institutions and degrees;

WHEREAS, Macomb County is third most populous county in Michigan and its population is growing rapidly;

WHEREAS, in the 20th century Macomb County established itself as a world-renowned center for manufacturing and industrial research and development;

WHEREAS, Macomb County will continue to serve as an indispensable engine of economic growth in Michigan as we enter the knowledge economy of the 21st century;

WHEREAS, the residents of Macomb County have articulated a desire to improve post-secondary education opportunities in the county in recognition of the vital link between educational attainment and economic development;

WHEREAS, only 18 percent of Macomb County residents over the age of 25 currently have a bachelor's degree; and

WHEREAS, according to the Congressional Research Service, Macomb County is one of the three most populous counties in the United States without a four-year public higher education institution within its boundaries;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Jennifer M. Granholm, Governor of the State of Michigan, by virtue of the power and authority vested in the Governor by the Michigan Constitution of 1963 and Michigan law, order the following:


    1. The Commission on Higher Education and Economic Growth in Macomb County (the "Commission") is created as an advisory body within the Executive Office of the Governor.

    2. The Commission shall consist of 15 voting members appointed by the Governor.

    3. Members of the Commission shall serve at the pleasure of the Governor.

    4. A vacancy on the Commission shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment.


    1. The Commission is advisory to the Governor. It shall assess the need for expanded post-secondary education opportunities in Macomb County by engaging the residents of Macomb County in a broad-based community dialogue. The Commission may conduct inquiries and investigations and consult with outside experts as appropriate in order to perform its duties.

    2. The Commission shall hold hearings and receive public comments regarding Macomb County's post-secondary education needs.

    3. The Commission shall advise the state's efforts to explore policy options regarding post-secondary education in Macomb County.

    4. The Commission shall provide other information or advice or take other actions as directed by the Governor.

    5. The Commission, not later than December 31, 2006, shall complete its work and report its findings to the Governor and the State Board of Education for their consideration.


    1. The Commission may promulgate bylaws, not inconsistent with Michigan law and this Order, governing its organization, operation, and procedures.

    2. The Governor shall designate one of the members of the Commission to serve as its Chairperson. The Commission may select from among its members a Vice-Chairperson.

    3. The Commission shall meet at the call of the Chair and as may be provided in procedures adopted by the Commission.

    4. The Commission shall act by majority vote of its present and voting members. A majority of the voting members of the Commission constitutes a quorum for the transaction of business.

    5. Members of the Commission shall serve without compensation.

    6. The Commission may accept donations of labor, services, or other things of value from any public or private agency or person.

    7. Members of the Commission, staff, and contractors shall refer all legal, legislative, and media contacts to the Office of the Governor.


    1. All departments, committees, commissioners, or officers of this state or of any political subdivision of this state shall give to the Commission, or to any representative of the Commission, any necessary assistance required by the Commission, in the performance of the duties of the Commission so far as is compatible with its, his, or her duties. Free access shall also be given to any books, records, or documents in its, his, or her custody, relating to matters within the scope of inquiry, study, or investigation of the Commission.

    2. Nothing in this Order shall be construed to diminish the constitutional authority of the State Board of Education pursuant to Section 3 of Article VIII of the Michigan Constitution of 1963, to provide leadership and general supervision over all public education, including adult education and instructional programs in state institutions, except as to institutions of higher education granting baccalaureate degrees; to serve as the general planning and coordinating body for all public education, including higher education; and to advise the Legislature as to the financial requirements in connection therewith.

    3. Nothing in this Order shall be construed to change the organization of the executive branch of state government or the assignment of functions among its units in a manner requiring the force of law.

    4. The invalidity of any portion of this Order shall not affect the validity of the remainder of the Order.

This Order is effective upon filing.

Given under my hand and the Great Seal of the State of Michigan this 17th day of July, in the year of our Lord, two thousand six.