County Cafe

Visits to the local café often lead to discussion about current hot issues. The County Café is no different (except that it’s on Zoom). This follow-up program to the New Commissioner School is designed to bring together both experienced and new commissioners and county leadership, present some current topics of relevance to county government, and give you a chance to talk about how these topics might impact your county and actions you can take to make the impact more positive. There will also be an opportunity for discussion following the presentation. We are looking forward to some informative presentations and practical discussion to assist county decision-making; and hope to see you there.

March 18, 3-4:30 p.m. EST - Michigan’s Economic Outlook and Its Impact on County Government
The economic uncertainty brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic has created challenges for many local governments. As counties face significant budget decisions this year and going forward, working with the best information possible is an important piece of moving towards fiscal sustainability. Dr. Eric Scorsone, Director of the MSU Extension Center for Local Government Finance and Policy, will present on Michigan’s economic outlook and its impact on county government.

May 6, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. EST - Counties Supporting Regional Economic Development
Counties are important economic development entities in Michigan. Yet successful economic development depends on collaboration, partnerships, and regional approaches. The MSU Economic Development Administration (EDA) University Center for Regional Economic Innovation (REI) leverages higher education assets in collaboration with communities to support the co-creation, co-implementation, and dissemination of new and innovative economic development strategies.

To advance Michigan’s long-term economic recovery from COVID-19, REI was awarded CARES Act funding in summer 2020 to establish a Comprehensive Economic Recovery Initiative (CERI). CERI will allow REI to leverage higher education assets to work with local businesses, governments, non-profits, economic developers, and others to develop new economic development strategies, document new economic development practices, and provide technical assistance to hard hit communities to facilitate action focused projects under four pillars: Resiliency Planning, Financial Resiliency, Circular Economies, and 21st Century Communications Infrastructure.

Join Jennifer Bruen of the MSU REI to learn about CERI, technical assistance, and partnership opportunities to advance regional economic development in Michigan.


Michigan State University is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Accommodations for persons with disabilities may be requested by contacting the event contact two weeks prior to the start of the event. Requests received after this date will be honored whenever possible.

Contact Information

For registration questions, contact ANR Event Services at 517-353-3175 or For questions about the program, please contact John Amrhein at; Eric Wolcott at; Bethany Prykucki at or Brad Neumann at