CHICAGO — Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder Wednesday night defended the state’s expansion of its emergency management law for troubled local governments and urged legislators to address a steep road-funding shortfall and support a newly created educational authority that will take over the state’s worst schools.

Snyder was set to follow his second state of the state address with an online town hall meeting Thursday. The speech came as Michigan enjoys its most positive economic news in years. The jobless rate dropped to 9.3% in December from 11.1% last January, the lowest rate in three years.

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