A year and a half ago, I wrote a rather lengthy piece titled “Majority white communities avoid Emergency Financial managers with help from Republicans Denby and Rogers”. In it, I told the rather convoluted story of how now-State Representatives Cindy Denby and Bill Rogers had, during their time as local government officials, gotten their municipalities and county into severe debt when the housing market crashed. Bad decisions by them resulted in Handy Township where Denby was the Supervisor and Livingston County where Rogers was a Commissioner facing severe financial crises over special assessment districts that were created, paid for, and which then fell apart as developers abandoned the projects.…
Republicans Denby and Rogers still trying to keep their white communities away from an Emergency Manager
BREAKING: Federal court allows legal challenge to constitutionality of Michigan’s Emergency Manager law to proceed
Another win for the good guys…
The United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan today granted a motion to reopen the lawsuit filed by the Sugar Law Center and others against Michigan officials challenging the constitutionality of Public Act 436, Michigan’s undemocratic Emergency Manager Law. From their press release:
Gov. Snyder breaks his own record. Now TWENTY schools & cities are in financial crisis in his “Turnaround state”.
Time to update my chart…
Back in December, I took a look at how many cities and schools were in financial crisis under Governor Rick Snyder compared with his predecessors. The results were pretty shocking:
Under John Engler, there were 3 cities (Flint, Hamtramck, and Highland Park).
Under Jennifer Granholm there were 5 cities (Benton Harbor, Ecorse, Highland Park, Pontiac, and Three Oaks Village) and one school district (Detroit Public Schools).
Judge Steven Rhodes: Legal challenge to Michigan’s Emergency Manager law can continue but Detroit EM Kevyn Orr is safe
Let’s find out if it is, indeed, a legal law
Federal bankruptcy judge Steven Rhodes determined today that a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of Michigan’s anti-democratic Emergency Manager law – Public Act 436 – can move forward. The case is being handled in another federal court.
In his ruling (pdf) denying a request to stay the case, Judge Rhodes said:
More Michigan cities and schools in financial crises under Rick Snyder than all other governors combined
Governor Snyder: it’s not working
Three new municipalities are now under consideration for an Emergency Manager: Lincoln Park, Royal Oak Township, and Highland Park. If Highland Park goes, it will be its second time around and it will be the third city to come out of financial crisis under an Emergency Manager only to go back under an Emergency Manager once again (along with Flint and Hamtramck.)
When you look at the situation under Governor Snyder compared with his predecessors, the data is striking. Including all cities and schools that have either had a consent agreement, an emergency manager, or that are being considered for an emergency manager, Governor Snyder is far and away the leader.…
“A half billion dollars or the art gets it” – The looting of Detroit and why bankruptcy may be the best course
A rock on one side and a hard place on the other
Last year, the Detroit Institute of Arts had over a half million visitors. The museum is a huge tourist draw and an anchor for the area of Detroit that surrounds it. The cost to the city of Detroit for this priceless collection of art is exactly zero dollars. It is run by a non-profit and receives funding, in part, from a tri-county millage designed to ensure that it will forever be there as a cultural hub for southeast Michigan.
For Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr, it’s a plum too juicy not to pick.…
Update on Hamtramck’s urban farm Hamtown Farms and how YOU can help them purchase the land they’re on
Photo by Anne C. Savage, special to Eclectablog
Late last month, I wrote about the amazing Hamtown Farms urban farm in Hamtramck, Michigan. The farm sits on city land that had been vacant for decades. Now that the city is legally able to begin selling off their empty lots, Cathy Square, the Emergency Manager in Hamtramck has swept aside previous agreements signed by the city with regard to preserving the farm and it putting the land up for auction. This is the only “fair” way to do it, Square told me, despite the fact that the volunteers that run Hamtown Farms have put tens of thousands of dollars of improvements into city lots they occupy.…
INTERVIEW: Flint Mayor Dayne Walling, Part 2 – Reflections of a Mayor under Emergency Managers & a better path forward
“The laws right now are written to mete out punishment to local officials, but there need to be clear partnership requirements for the state to address fiscal stress.”
Flint, Michigan is rare in that it has not had just one Emergency Manager. It has had four different managers and the current “emergency” is the second one for the former manufacturing powerhouse:
- Jul 2002 – Jun 2004 — Ed Kurtz
- Dec 2011 – Aug 2012 — Michael Brown
- Aug 2012 – July 2013 — Ed Kurtz
- July 2013 – October 2013 — Michael Brown
- October 2013 – present — Darnell Earley
Through most of this Dayne Walling was the mayor of Flint.…
Hamtramck Emergency Manager sweeps away agreements, puts wildly successful urban farm/comm. garden land up for auction
Sometimes what’s best for a city doesn’t have a price tag on it
Back 2011, Michael Davis, Julie Swartz, Evan Major, and Jeffrey Doe formed a vision for an urban farm and community garden on group of five city-owned lots in Hamtramck, Michigan that had sat abandoned for thirty years. The lots were unable to be sold due to pending litigation so they approached Mayor Karen Majewski. Later that year, they were issued a permit under the city’s Adopt-A-Lot program to use the lots for a period of five years. Over the next two years, they transformed the lots into a farm with garden plots and fruit trees, including an almost unheard of fruit called the Paw-Paw which was originally native to Michigan.
Then, in June of this year, came the Emergency Manager. It’s Hamtramck’s second EM and, when Cathy Square, entered the picture, the future of the project became uncertain.
Click through for more.
INTERVIEW: Mark Schauer, candidate for Michigan governor – “I will be a real partner to local communities”
“When people hear about me, my background, my values, my vision for Michigan, they’re immediately on board and ready to go to work.”
When Anne and I moved to Dexter in late 2006, we were shocked to find that this community, just 10 minutes from downtown Ann Arbor, was represented in Congress by a far-right conservative ideologue, Tim Walberg. So, in 2008, we worked very hard for his Democratic opponent Mark Schauer and were elated when he rode the Obama Democratic tide into office. Two short years later the tide rolled back out and Mark Schauer lost his seat when he was defeated by Walberg who enjoyed immense financial support from conservative groups like the Club for Growth.…
"best state-based progressive political blog" for Michigan
LOLGOP on Twitter
- If you think gay marriage threatens your marriage but climate change doesn't threaten your climate, cancel basic cable. #Up4Climate about 3 minutes ago from TweetDeck ReplyRetweetFavorite
- You not believing in climate change because it's snowing is like me not believing in education because you exist. #Up4Climate about 6 minutes ago from TweetDeck ReplyRetweetFavorite
- Watch This Climate Change Sermon To Understand Why We Can't Act In A Crisis That Threatens Our Survival http://t.co/FGK59DdqAg #Up4Climate about 7 minutes ago from TweetDeck ReplyRetweetFavorite
- The least we can do for our great-grandkids is have the ocean swallow most of Florida. #Up4Climate about 13 minutes ago from TweetDeck ReplyRetweetFavorite
- REMINDER: The Number Of Uninsured Americans Increased by 7.9 Million Under George W. Bush http://t.co/sOjKOoKpVO about 15 minutes ago from TweetDeck ReplyRetweetFavorite