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Indiana school district to hire former Michigan Emergency Manager who increased debt by nearly $90 million in 18 months

Indiana school district to hire former Michigan Emergency Manager who increased debt by nearly $90 million in 18 months

Look out, Indiana! It’s coming right for you!

After having been beta tested in Michigan, the Emergency Manager model of “saving” “failing” municipalities from their own corruption, malfeasance, and ineptitude – or as is more often the case, the implosion of their manufacturing base and disinvestment – is being rolled out in the states of Indiana and New Jersey. In Indiana, Gary Public Schools has just hired a new Emergency Manager (or “fiscal manager” in their parlance) to run the cash-strapped school district. Who is the new overseer? None other than Jack Martin, former Emergency Manager of Highland Park schools and, more recently Detroit Public Schools.…

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Former spokesman for Gov. Snyder and Detroit Emergency Manager Orr cashes in on Atlantic City's financial crisis

Former spokesman for Gov. Snyder and Detroit Emergency Manager Orr cashes in on Atlantic City’s financial crisis

Bill Nowling is a longtime Republican spokesman and strategist. He was Governor Rick Snyder’s spokesman for a time. Then he was Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr’s mouthpiece.

Now Nowling is cashing in on Atlantic City’s current financial emergency:

Atlantic City’s Emergency Manager, Kevin Lavin, appointed by Gov. Christie in January, did not issue an updated report this month as promised in his previous report, when he recommended $10 million in budget cuts, hundreds of layoffs, and mediators to negotiate with casinos and unions.

He did, however, produce a $375 an hour newly hired spokesman, Bill Nowling, previously the spokesman for Detroit’s Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr, who also served as a consultant for Atlantic City.

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There was a 3rd SCOTUS decision this week progressives should be thrilled with, one with implications for Michigan

There was a 3rd SCOTUS decision this week progressives should be thrilled with, one with implications for Michigan

As the celebrations over the U.S. Supreme Court decision in King v. Burwell (which upheld the Affordable Care Act [again]) and their decision in Obergefell v. Hodges (which found same-sex marriage bans to be unconstitutional) begin settle down, it’s worth looking at a third case they decided this week that should have progressives applauding. This one, Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs v. The Inclusive Communities Project, Inc. involved fair housing practices:

Civil rights groups won a victory Thursday, as the Supreme Court ruled that claims of racial discrimination in housing cases shouldn’t be limited by questions of intent.
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Detroit Schools Emergency Manager announces plan to force teachers to reapply for jobs during Teacher Appreciation Week

Detroit Schools Emergency Manager announces plan to force teachers to reapply for jobs during Teacher Appreciation Week

Earlier this week, President Obama issued a proclamation regarding National Teacher Appreciation Week which runs from May 3rd through May 9th. In his proclamation, he wrote:

“On National Teacher Appreciation Day and during National Teacher Appreciation Week, we honor America’s outstanding teachers and the vital role they play in the lives of our children and the success of our country.

“In classrooms across America, talented and hardworking teachers are nurturing a new generation of thinkers, doers, and dreamers. They teach the subjects and skills that will fuel the next century of growth and innovation, as well as the virtues and values — like character, compassion, creativity, and resilience — that will prepare their students to take on the challenges of the future.

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Former Detroit Emergency Manager Orr billed Atlantic City nearly $1,000/hour for emergency management consulting

Former Detroit Emergency Manager Orr billed Atlantic City nearly $1,000/hour for emergency management consulting

It’s a good gig if you can get it…

After leaving as Detroit’s Emergency Manager, bankruptcy attorney Kevyn Orr was quickly tapped to do consulting work for a newly-appointed Emergency Manager in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Orr has completed his work there after just over three months and returned to work at his former employer Jones Day last week.

During his brief time in Atlantic City, Orr cashed in handsomely. He billed the city $950 an hour for his expertise for a total pay off of $70,000:

Kevyn Orr, the former Detroit emergency manager who was hired by Gov. Christie to advice on Atlantic City’s fiscal crisis, billed the state at a rate of $950 per hour for his work, according to documents released by the state Attorney General’s office late Wednesday.…
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With Flint's primary election an utter catastrophe, who is to blame? Emergency Manager? His appointed City Admin? Who?

With Flint’s primary election an utter catastrophe, who is to blame? Emergency Manager? His appointed City Admin? Who?

What started out as bad has turned to worse in Flint’s primary election. First, three mayoral candidates (including incumbent mayor Dayne Walling) and two city council candidates all failed to make the ballot after they were all given the wrong date by the City Clerk to submit their nominating petitions. Then yesterday, the only remaining candidate to submit his petitions on time, Eric Mays, was found to be short of the necessary amount of signatures.

Mays’ situation is one of his own making and he clearly doesn’t deserve to be on the ballot for the mayor’s race. However, the other five candidates – including mayoral candidates Walling, businesswoman Karen Weaver, and Councilman Wantwaz Davis – deserve to be on the ballot.…

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NEWS ROUND-UP: This week in GOP idiocy in Michigan

NEWS ROUND-UP: This week in GOP idiocy in Michigan

There’s been so much in the news about over-the-top idiocy from Michigan Republicans lately that I thought I’d just put them all in one post. Over the past week or so, they’ve been trying to further degrade a woman’s right to choose a safe and legal abortion and to corrupt our democracy by rigging the electoral system in favor of Republicans. But, sadly, they didn’t stop there.

So, without further ado, here’s the round-up.

SNYDER ADMINISTRATION AWARDS FAILED OUTGOING DETROIT PUBLIC SCHOOLS EMERGENCY MANAGER $50,000 BONUS

In his outstanding piece for The Metro Times, Curt Guyette showed how, after four Emergency Managers and being under state control for six years, the Detroit Public Schools system is further in debt than ever.…

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Anti-democratic Emergency Manager? Check! State takeover of schools? Check! New Jersey adopts the Michigan GOP model.

Anti-democratic Emergency Manager? Check! State takeover of schools? Check! New Jersey adopts the Michigan GOP model.

In the spring of 2011 when I first began sounding the alarm bells at Eclectablog about the undemocratic Emergency Manager legislation that was quickly passed by the newly-elected, Republican-controlled state legislature, I warned that this was not a “Michigan only” problem. I have said repeatedly that Michigan is only the beta testing ground for an agenda and a way of governing that will be spread to other states if it is not stopped.

In Michigan, despite plurality of voters rejecting emergency management at the ballot box in 2012, we failed to stop it. And now, as predicted, the show is going on the road.…

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Allen Park, Michigan, where "City Administrator", "Emergency Manager", and "Dictator" all mean the same thing

Allen Park, Michigan, where “City Administrator”, “Emergency Manager”, and “Dictator” all mean the same thing

This past week, the City Council of Allen Park voted to fire their City Administrator Karen Folks. Why? Because she has essentially made herself the dictator of the city that recently saw their Emergency Manager leave because their financial emergency was declared over.

[Former Emergency Manager Joyce] Parker hired Folks as city administrator before she left her post as emergency manager on Sept. 25, 2014.

According to Mayor William Matakas and Mayor Pro Tem Bob Keenan, the city has had several issues with Folks since her hiring. Keenan said the recent hiring of a deputy fire chief with no input, angered the council.

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UDPATED: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to appoint Emergency Manager for Atlantic City, Kevyn Orr to be a consultant

UDPATED: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to appoint Emergency Manager for Atlantic City, Kevyn Orr to be a consultant

See update below.

Back in November, I wrote about New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie considering the possibility of appointing an Emergency Manager for Atlantic City which has faced a critical financial emergency due to the near collapse of its gaming industry. This morning it is being widely reported that Gov. Christie will appoint an Emergency Manager. Kevyn Orr is said to have been consulting with with Gov. Christie’s administration but rumors that he will be the Atlantic City Emergency Manager appear to be inaccurate. Instead, it is believed Christie will appoint New York lawyer Kevin Lavin:

Christie is expected to name Kevin Lavin, a lawyer who worked for FTI Consulting Inc.…
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