Michigan saw a sharp decline in the labor force starting in 2008 and lasting until 2011, while 800,000 jobs left Michigan. In 2009, Michigan’s unemployment rate hit a record-high 14.2 percent. During that same period Michigan saw its population base shrink. In 2011, Bolger worked with Republicans in the house to pass tax, education and pension reform measures, and employers have responded positively to the changes. Since the reforms were passed in 2011, more than 400,000 jobs returned to the state and the state’s unemployment rate decreased to below 6 percent.