Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Is it an Emergency?

I don't think people have really understood the emergency financial management bill that has passed the House and Senate and is winding its way to Gov. Snyder's desk. It's not exactly clear under what circumstances a city, county, or school district can be thrown under emergency financial management, but it's pretty clear to me that with revenue sharing cuts, school aid fund cuts, and more, there is a lot of potential for many communities  to be put under emergency financial management...and not necessarily by a person, but potentially by a corporation.

Or, as a friend of mine wrote recently,
These bills will allow someone appointed by the Governor to arrive in a community, strip the locally elected school board or city council of their power, throw out contracts and not be challenged by the people, the elected officials or the courts. Governor Snyder has repeatedly said he supports collective bargaining rights, yet he will sign these bills. He also said he wants to invest in early childhood education, but his budget offered nothing. He offers us a budget of “shared sacrifice” but cuts taxes on corporations and increases taxes on senior citizens and low income working families.
So now, it seems, EVERY state--including Michigan--is Wisconsin. Governor Snyder can "say" that he is not going to mess with collective bargaining, but really, we all know that actions speak louder than words. Look no further than the emergency manager's bill.

You might be interested in Brian Robb's analysis of how all the cuts will affect Ypsilanti

You might be interested in the Detroit News' analysis of how the budget bills would affect eight sample taxpayers.

And here is Rachel Maddow's take on both Wisconsin and Michigan.

And in breaking news from Rachel Maddow's web site:
NBC News reports that the Wisconsin Senate has passed a bill stripping unionized state workers of collective bargaining rights without any Democrats present. It went 18-1 -- Republican Senator Dale Schultz was the lone nay. The Assembly looks likely to vote tomorrow morning. Democrats say the rushed proceedings violate the state's open meetings law and that they'll be asking the State Attorney General to intervene.

Citizens, it's time for us to find our voice. Which might be hard, because every day I find myself more and more speechless.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, Gov. Snyder says a lot of things. A gay friend of mine knows the Snyders and inquired before the election whether he would be hopping on the anti-gay republican bandwagon. "Oh, no" she was assured. I see that already the provision for domestic partners to recieve health care benefits is being repealed for state workers. Personally, I don't think that goes far enough. If we really want to save money we should repeal the benefits for all spouses of state workers. Why stop with gay people? We're already used to not getting anything. Let's go after the benefits for Snyder's wife and all of those other married free loaders!