Fiscal Health in Rural Counties: A Case Study of Ogemaw County, MI

September 2022
Stephanie Leiser, Maximilian Hill

This case study examines the fiscal health of Ogemaw County, Michigan, a mostly rural county in the northeast lower peninsula of Michigan, using data from the County’s annual audited financial reports. We find that while Ogemaw County has struggled with aligning revenues and expenses and maintaining liquidity, many fiscal indicators are moving in a positive direction, and the County’s long-term solvency is strong, with manageable debt burdens and legacy costs. This case study also highlights other factors - including constraints on revenues and expenditures, capital planning, and regional cooperation - that are important to understanding the fiscal health of Ogemaw County, and rural counties more generally.