Dr. Gary L. Wolfram, an adjunct scholar at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, is the George Munson Professor of political economy at Hillsdale College in Hillsdale, Michigan, and president of the Hillsdale Policy Group, a consulting firm specializing in taxation and public policy analysis. He is the author of A Capitalist Manifesto: Understanding the Market Economy and Defending Liberty (2012).

His government experience includes a stint as Washington chief of staff for Michigan Congressman Nick Smith, being senior economist for the Michigan State Republican policy staff, and serving as Michigan's deputy state treasurer for taxation and economic policy.

One of the highlights of Wolfram's government service was directing the establishment of Michigan's Enterprise Zone legislation. He also served as chairman of the Headlee Amendment Blue Ribbon Commission.

Dr. Wolfram earned his Ph.D. at the University of California-Berkeley, and he has taught at several colleges and universities, including Mt. Holyoke College, The University of Michigan, and Washington State University.

Are Jobs the Object?

Time to Tame the Tax Beast in Michigan

Even after Gov. John Engler’s efforts to cut taxes, Michigan remains one of the most highly taxed states in the union, resulting in lost jobs and forgone economic opportunities. To get a handle on high taxes and runaway state spending, Michigan needs to follow the lead of 14 other states and adopt a constitutional amendment or law requiring a legislative supermajority before any tax can be raised. … more

Michigan's Prevailing Wage Law Forces Schools to Waste Money

Research shows that Michigan's Prevailing Wage Act of 1965 is a costly piece of special-interest legislation that forces public schools to waste millions of dollars each year on inflated construction costs. Repealing the act-or at least exempting schools from its rules-would make school construction more affordable, save money for use in the classroom, and allow for other improvements to public education. … more

Navigating the Maze of Michigan's Sales Tax

Michigan's sales tax, first enacted in 1933 during the Great Depression, now contains some rather interesting, if not hard-to-explain, features. … more

Don't Waste Water Treatment Privatization Opportunities

Environmentalists, consumer advocates, business owners, and ratepayers can all agree that everybody benefits from cleaner water and lower rates. Privatization of Detroit's wastewater system could provide both of these goals. … more

Privatized Dorms: Michigan Can Learn from Texas

Privatizing the Poor: How to Expand Low-Income Housing in Michigan

Give Parents Choices

Dare to Privatize DARE

The Headlee Amendment: Alive and Well

Though certain initiatives are needed to clarify the law and ensure enforcement, the 1978 Headlee Amendment to the Michigan Constitution has worked reasonably well in limiting the growth of government. … more