Snyder’s plans for Emergency Financial Managers in Michigan

I haven’t given much time here on the site to Governor Snyder’s proposed legislation concerning Emergency Financial Managers. I’ve been remiss in that regard, and I’m afraid that now it might be too late. As of this afternoon, the bill has cleared the Michigan House and Senate, and, barring some unforeseen development, it looks as though it will be signed into law by the Governor next week. Here, before we get rolling with the completely uncalled for and irresponsible Nazi analogies, is a clip from this evening’s Reuter’s article.

The Michigan Senate approved on Wednesday a proposal from Republican Gov. Rick Snyder to give state-appointed emergency managers broad authority to break labor deals to turn around failing schools and cities…

Senators voted 26-12 to approve an amended version of the proposal. It now must return to the state House for a vote. If representatives agree with the changes, the bill can be forwarded to the governor for his signature.

Republican leaders in the Michigan House tentatively plan to take the bill up next week, said Ari Adler, spokesman for House Speaker Jase Bolger said.

The bill would allow a governor-appointed emergency manager to modify or terminate collective bargaining agreements. With the governor’s approval, the emergency manager also could dissolve a city government or recommend consolidation.

Hundreds of pro-union demonstrators had jammed the Michigan Capitol in Lansing on Tuesday from the floor of the rotunda to the floors above to oppose the measures in a scene reminiscent of weeks of protests at the Wisconsin Capitol in Madison….

Democratic Senate Minority Leader Gretchen Whitmer said the changes would add to the pressure on Michigan’s communities and school districts and served as an attack on public sector unions similar to those in Wisconsin.

“Wisconsin’s Governor Walker may be entering the front door on undoing workers’ rights, but make no mistake you all are sneaking in the back door to do the same thing with this vote,” Whitmer said in the final discussion for the Senate vote….

And, now, we’re pretty much just waiting on the Governor’s signature to make it law. Here, for those of you who prefer moving pictures to text, is a clip from last night’s Rachel Maddow program, in which she talks about the legislation.

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And here, with more background, is a comment left early today by a reader in Ypsi named Glen:

…This bill is so extreme, so unwarranted, and frankly, so undemocratic, that it is finally starting to get some national attention. A “recommended” post this morning on the national political website Daily Kos carries the following headline:

“Michigan Governor Seeks Emergency Powers”

… and goes on to describe the bill this way:

“The governor of Michigan is trying to force through the legislature a bill that would establish emergency rule, LITERALLY. Gov. Snyder is seeking emergency powers that would enable him to 1) unilaterally declare a “financial emergency”, 2) disincorporate entire municipal governments, 3) dismiss elected officials with no replacement election to follow, 4) seize control of local civil services, 5) hand taxpayer money, services and POWERS to private, for-profit firms.”

I’d also like to draw everyone’s attention to a recent article in the Michigan Messenger, entitled “Bill Offers Few Guidelines for Use of Emergency Managers’ Powers.”

(Here’s a clip) in which Eric Scorsone, who is one of the “experts” hired by the Snyder Administration to train dozens of new EFMs, discusses the challenges of the new, uncharted territory this law exposes:

Scorsone said that he thinks the governor wants to push communities to make hard choices about their budgets by showing them that if they don’t make painful cuts, a state appointed Emergency Manager will do it for them.

“The proposed bill does not give details as to what actions an EM should take first when it comes to restructuring a town, and an appointed manager could decide to start with extreme measures such as dismantling a town,” Scorsone said.

“It’s unclear to me how that would actually work,“ he said, “how services will be provided.”

“Unlike in a corporate liquidation, the citizens don’t just go away.”

Working out the details of some of these extreme measures is stuff for another more advanced training, he said.

“In April or May we may get into questions like how does one dissolve a town.”

I want to repeat that: “Unlike in a corporate liquidation, the citizens don’t just go away.”


Folks, it may already be too late to stop this particular bill, but it ain’t over yet… so please call or write your local and state elected officials TODAY to urge them to oppose this disastrous bill, which not only threatens the future of local, democratically-elected control of many Michigan communities like Ypsilanti, but also many school districts.

So, here’s my question for the day. How shall we welcome the Emergency Financial Manager when he gets here? (I wonder whose house he’ll take.) I’ve been reading up on puppet regimes this evening, but, so far, I don’t have any great ideas. All I can think about is Jack Benny and how he deals with Col. Ehrhardt, the Gestapo Commander overseeing Warsaw, in “To Be or Not to Be.”

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  1. Elf
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 12:35 am | Permalink

    We should totally put on an act for our Emergency Manager, like in To Be Or Not To Be. I thought that this was going to be terrible, but now I’m actually looking forward to it.

  2. Posted March 10, 2011 at 5:50 am | Permalink

    In colonial days, our ancestors did this and this to such.

  3. Glen S.
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 7:54 am | Permalink

    The most important thing to understand is that, although much of the controversy here in Michigan (and Wisconsin, and Ohio …) has centered on “collective bargaining” rights for public employees — this is all SO much bigger than that.

    Whether you’re in a union (or not), or support the idea of unions (or not) — everyone needs to understand that these seemingly disconnected events are all really parts of a well-coordinated, well-funded effort to drive down wages and benefits for ALL workers — and all to benefit just a handful of the world’s wealthiest individuals and corporations.

    As we saw yesterday in Wisconsin, the folks behind this are willing to go to extraordinary — even illegal and undemocratic — lengths to push their agenda forward. Michigan Republicans have so far taken a less openly hostile approach, but make no mistake, their goals are largely the same.

    If they are successful in ending collective bargaining rights for public employees, they have already indicated their goal is to make states like Wisconsin and Ohio — and Michigan — so-called “right-to-work” states, which would effectively break unions in the private-sector, as well.

    Once that happens, they will have free reign to go after a whole host of other laws: Minimum wage, worker health and safety, overtime, etc.

    Again, even if you have never been in a union, or if you’re ambivalent about the role of unions — please understand that this assault on collective bargaining rights for public employees is just the first step in a multifaceted war on the wages, benefits, safety, and job security of everyone who works for a living.

    Here in Michigan, the Republican plan to cut off state funding cities need to provide essential services — while simultaneously dangling the (very real) threat of appointing “Emergency Financial Managers” over those communities who refuse to bust unions, renege on promised pension benefits, and/or outsource services to low-bid private contractors, is just the first “domino.”

  4. EOS
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 8:18 am | Permalink


    Do you think it would be better for unions to drive cities into receivership? If wages and benefits remain the same, would you be happier if 25 – 50% of government employees lose their jobs? Would this improve the quality of life for the majority? Other than advocating for the State to distribute money so that local municipalities can meet their obligations, how can local governments continue to pay ever increasing salaries and benefits, as well as expanding services, while their revenues are in a state of decline?

  5. Glen S.
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 8:38 am | Permalink


    You know full well that Michigan has been cutting taxes for decades — and Snyder plans to give wealthy corporations another $1.8 Billion dollar tax shelter. Much of the “deficit” in Lansing is the result of Michigan’s artificially low income tax structure, which places us well behind our Great Lakes state peers.

    You also know full well that Michigan’s (broken) system of funding local government was set up in a way that strictly limits both the amount and types of taxes and fees local communities can levy. In exchange for these strictures, nearly all Michigan communities (and yes, I’m talking about Ypsilanti Township, as well as the City of Ypsilanti) receive “revenue sharing” from the state.

    What Snyder and the Republicans are doing is to take away the funding support — without setting local communities free to set their taxes and fees at an appropriate level to support services. Hence, the municipal budget crisis we (and yes, you!) are about to experience has been wholly manufactured by Republican’s bent on breaking the backs of communities (and their unions), in order to — as I described above — drive down middle-class wages, benefits and job security.

    So, instead of having elected officials from both parties working together to develop a better, more sustainable model for funding local governments in light of our rapidly evolving economy, we have bomb-throwing Republicans insisting on waging both a class and culture war, seemingly intent on a loser-takes all race to the bottom.

  6. Child of God
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 8:52 am | Permalink

    EOS, you’re asking the wrong questions. The question of priority should be: what can we do, as a unified citizenry, to demand the funding our cities have historically had (usually just enough to squeak by)?

    What you’re advocating—and I suppose you’d be happy to know it—is for a kind of Vichy response to fascism: “All too happy to do your bidding! We loathe our neighbors just as much as you do.”

    What happens when a “playing field” has been “levelled” (strewn with the bodies of both sides in a class war)? Bunkered commanders, after the smoke has cleared, drive up in their Hummers, Town Cars, or APCs, and begin the speculation.

    You think your neighbors in the Militia are going to smile when Lansing sends in a unit to disincoporate and then freshly administer governance? To the contrary: arm sales will spike. As of now, your average rightwing township dweller loves the Tough Nerd. It won’t be long, though, before “Don’t Tread On Me” is revised to “Don’t Tread On Me, Rick!”

    Finally, a little parable about an Asian state that is currently being investigated by EU banking bodies: a big spike in real estate sales and then purchases is noticed; small funds are flowing out of Swiss accounts, and gigantic funds eventually flow back in. Turns out, via political maneuvering, someone has helped drive a city to its knees, then declared it bankrupt, then purchased/seized a whole lot of real estate in that region. Then put it all back on real estate market, to be bought or managed by allies who, it has been determined, through their entrepreneurial know-how, can figure out how to revitalize the bankrupt region.

    For our purposes: Detroit will be sent an EFM. That EFM will be someone that Snyder “knows and trusts.” A year or two later, post-assault, Detroit will be managed by Koch Industries, or one of its equivalents.

    All the while, folks like EOS will be cheerleading, until they discover that not only does Lansing have no stake to offer them in New Detroit Inc., it’s also not even going to pay them minimum wage for their free PR.

    In sum, EOS, it behooves you to understand you’re not, right now, advocating sensible change for the Mitten State; instead, you’re unwittingly cheerleading the beginning’s of its despoiling.

  7. Edward
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 8:55 am | Permalink

    Thank you, Glen.

    I think what you said here needs repeating.

    Here in Michigan, the Republican plan to cut off state funding cities need to provide essential services — while simultaneously dangling the (very real) threat of appointing “Emergency Financial Managers” over those communities who refuse to bust unions, renege on promised pension benefits, and/or outsource services to low-bid private contractors, is just the first “domino.”


  8. karen
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 9:09 am | Permalink

    Would a financial manager be so bad in Ypsilanti? What do people think they are going to do? invest in another water street project? give a million dollars to the freight house? Do you really think they would make dumber decisions than the mayor and city council?

  9. Edward
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    I agree with Karen. Democracy doesn’t work. We the people shouldn’t have the right to choose our own leaders. We have proven incapable. What we need is an efficiently run corporation to rule over us. Perhaps Haliburton or Blackwater can start a Small City Management division.

  10. TeacherPatti
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    When I heard about this bill passing, one of my honest to God first thoughts was that I wished there was a place for the MM denizens to gather and just commiserate (yes, even you EOS :) although I don’t know you’d want to commiserate!) Am I spelling that word right? You know what I mean I hope.
    My district will be the first to topple and I promise you the kids are going to be hurt. I know these teachers. Not all, but many will just stop. It’s going to be a nightmare.

  11. Glen S.
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    How about a meet-up sometime soon? Perhaps at the Corner?

  12. Kim
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 11:21 am | Permalink

    A public meeting is a good idea. Maybe it could start with a panel including the Mayor, City Manager, one of the more engaged Council members, Kirk Profit, Rebekah Warren, etc. Maybe EMU would let us use a room, like they did for the Mayoral debate Mark and friends threw a few years back. But the brewery has beer though, doesn’t it?

  13. Glen S.
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

    I think it would be great to have an opportunity for frequent MM posters and others who are interested in these issues to meet informally — to get to know each other a bit, and to share information and ideas.

    Perhaps, out of that, we could then generate ideas for how to put together a community-wide forum.

    Just a thought.

  14. TeacherPatti
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    Ooooh, I’m all about meet ups! I’m happy to help arrange if we want to do this. I’d love to meet folks, even those who don’t like me…also I could apologize personally to dragon for being a dick to him/her the other week.
    And yep, Corner does have some beer there :)

  15. 'Ff'lo
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

    Organizing! Resistance meet up. Great idea.

  16. dragon
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 1:27 pm | Permalink

    Come on TP, I know you can say it, “green balloons”.

  17. TeacherPatti
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 1:59 pm | Permalink

    Okay had to google that D, and something about “power, pussy and green balloons” came up…I can get you the green balloons but that’s about it (sorry) :)

  18. Ypsiosaurus Wrecks
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    @ Karen, I agree – there is little a EFM could do to fuck things up more than city hall.

    I do like the idea of all of us MM devotees coming out of the woodwork to share a drink/joint/ideas and see if TeacherPatti is even worth looking at.

  19. Andrew Jason Clock
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

    I’m all for this idea. Although, while I love Corner, if we’re going to talk about the future of finances and politics in Ypsi and Michigan, I humbly suggest we’re going to need someplace that has liquor.

    And, as many times as I have clashed with council, I would still rather have them than an EFM. At least council is trying to do what is best for the residents of Ypsi, even if a lot of it seems pretty misguided to the rest of us. An EFM won’t give a fuck about the residents of the city, their only concern is if there is a deficit or not.

  20. Robert
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

    Check this out on DailyKos:

  21. TeacherPatti
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

    Even worth looking at? Is that a challenge?

  22. dragon
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

    Washtenaw County donors for Rick Snyder in 2009:

    # Rene Greff, owner of Arbor Brewing and Corner Brewery.

  23. TeacherPatti
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    Cuz motherfucker I love me a challenge. Especially from folks so ugly they make flowers wilt (not saying you are…and just out of curiosity, would you have said the same thing if I was TeacherPete?)

    Andrew, you are right on many fronts…the EFM is only concerned about finances. I could be wrong about this, but I have a feeling that EFMs will NOT be from the community that they will be managing.

  24. Bud Wiser
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 3:57 pm | Permalink

    Hot Damn. Corner Brewery funding Richy Rick?! I don’t mind their beer making me sick, but I do mind that.

  25. FFF
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

    I’ve been wanting to ask the Greff’s whether their feelings about Rick have changed, but I haven’t because I think there’s a good possibility that they may still be behind him. Money tends to do that to people. Now that they own the 10th largest micro-brewery in Michigan, maybe they’re thinking more about saving their earnings from the tax man, and less about insuring the poor. They’re hardly even at the brewery any more. According to, they’re spending most of their time in India now, where they’re growing their empire. Maybe they’ve adopted a more colonial mindset as a result.

  26. karen
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 8:11 pm | Permalink

    The Greff’s don’t care. Their liberal clientele will drink their beer no matter what. I can’t wait to sample their new Union Busting Porter or their No Pension Benefits Pale Ale.

  27. EOS
    Posted March 10, 2011 at 9:55 pm | Permalink

    That the Gref’s support Snyder shouldn’t come as any surprise. Snyder was not embraced by conservatives. Among social conservatives, he ranked a distant 4th. He’s our governor due to the funding and efforts of crossover Democrats like the Gref’s.

    But not to worry, the Corner is not about to be taken over by conservatives. The Gref’s actually celebrate the anniversary of Roe v. Wade each year. So go ahead and raise a toast to the 53,310,843 innocent lives slaughtered in the womb since 1973.

    So Patti, I’m not in the least thrilled with Snyder. I’ve been commiserating as well, but for different reasons. It was an historical election in November, with landslides for conservatives, yet I still have two of the most liberal Senators in the nation and very liberal representatives at both the state and congressional level. I can’t even recall a conservative ever gaining office in a local election during the past 30 years.

    Glen, the standard of living has been eviscerated in my lifetime. What you see a a low tax rate is what I feel as oppressive. Large fees and taxes are now included as standard in my phone, cable, and utility bills. Nearly every family now has two wage earners, an effective doubling of taxes since 1970.

    I’m with Karen about EFMs. They would likely be able to stop the funding of non-essentials like the million dollar elevator at Riverside Arts and the clock and empty parking lot in Depot town. At a minimum, they would be able to make the entire budget transparent and make better informed choices with tax dollars.

  28. Mike Shecket
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 10:42 am | Permalink

    OK, so again, if you don’t like this plan, what would you do? What would Bernero have done?

  29. Edward
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    I’ve got a really basic question. Wasn’t there already a mechanism in place for dealing with bankrupt cities? How were things handled in the past?

  30. Jeff Irwin
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    For my fellow liberals: I would encourage you not to be so hard on Matt and Rene Greff. It’s true that they were large supporters of Snyder and I agree that their support was misplaced. However, I have seen them support many liberal causes and politicians over the years. On balance, they are huge supporters of the left and I, for one, am proud to count them as friends. In the interests of full disclosure, they donated the use of their space to my campaign last year and they did not contribute directly.

    They make their facility available to all sorts of causes and events and I appreciate all that they’ve brought to our communities. ABC and the Corner are contributors to Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti, in part, because the Greff’s and their team brew great beer. But, it’s more than beer. Opening the Corner up to various fundraisers and events like the Shadow Art Fair is the kind of community-oriented commitment that we need.

    So, if there is going to be a event to chat about the state of politics in Michigan, I hope I can come and I hope it’s held at the Corner. Maybe Matt and Rene will join us and we can all lambaste them for supporting Snyder and put this bad taste to rest.

  31. Jeff Irwin
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    To Edward:
    Yes, Public Act 72 was already in place and already provided for emergency financial managers. We’ve seen these managers appointed to communities like Highland Park, Pontiac and Detroit Public Schools. Unfortunately, they tend to make matters worse rather than better. For instance, the Detroit Public Schools have a deficit $100M larger than when Robert Bobb took over. The EFM’s tend to be extremely expensive and completely ineffective.

    So, the changes to the EFM law do two basic things: 1) They make it easier for the state to take over local government. The new changes allow EFM’s to be more easily appointed in a number of ways. Most significantly, the Republicans added a new ‘catch-all’ reason to the roster of reasons that cause an EFM to be appointed: whenever the Governor (or the State Treasurer) deems it appropriate. 2) The new laws will mean that the EFM’s have greater powers. The most significant new power relates to breaching labor contracts.

  32. dragon
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 11:42 am | Permalink

    “I want our state to invest in the success of its citizens by supporting great schools, great universities and vibrant, connected communities.”
    J. Irwin

    —Unless a prominent business that financially supports the exact opposite offers me a free spot to spout my bullshit, then, hey Hoocoodanode.

  33. TeacherPatti
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    God I was crabby yesterday! I’m sorry folks. We had no heat turned on in our building (our engineers were outsourced; when they worked for the Board we always had heat turned on…just sayin’) and I spent four hours or so typing reports b/c none of the kids have computers/printers at home, their regular teacher hasn’t shown up for awhile and I was pissed about that and I think my brain was just grouchy. Sorry, again.

    Jeff, I would love to meet you if we have a meet up! I can share my experience with the EFM at my district…well, I’ve never met him but he shows up in my dreams sometimes…last time, he was standing on the hood of my car as I drove home. Weird.

  34. karen
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

    Jeff is babbling non-coherently. He’s drank too much of the Greff’s Anti-Collective Bargaining Doppelbock.

    I hear it’s especially delicious when drinking it with some chips made out of the remnants of the earned income credit.

  35. Elle Kaye
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

    Since the first class of 50 EFMs have already been hired (at undisclosed salaries that y’all can’t know but will have to pay) and trained by your Treasurer (or some professor from Michigan Tech or on-line colleges that don’t really exist) it will be great to see that pesky, oh so difficult local government disappear. With your school districts consolidated and de-funded, it will be great to see Michigan football bite the dust. Yale National Champs! What’s the going price on the UP???

    The next class of EFMs is already brimming with former political aides!

  36. wetdolphinmissile
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

    You know last time I looked it was a free country, especially w/ free speech. The Greffs have every right to support whoever. After all the vote is private. They chose to share who they support, but isn’t that their/our right? I can have friends with different politics or beliefs, and I can support businesses who are part of the process even if I don’t agree 100%. Most of the democrats in Ypsi cannot agree on about 8% of things and fight as if it were 90% of their differences. Ypsi needs to hang tight and work together as the big bad wolf wolf is at the door.

  37. wetdolphinmissile
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

    Oh & Teacher Patti–I love it when you’re crabby!

  38. lorie thom
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

    man I hate it when our right to “Free Speech” is convoluted into meaning there aren’t consequences.

    Really, all that our Federal Right to free speech means is that the government can’t squash your political speech. It doesn’t mean your employer can’t fire you for it. It doesn’t mean people can’t call you out for it.

    Now the emergency financial manager thing is interesting for us specifically in Ypsilanti. A) do you want your vote taken away? that is what a financial manager will do. He will kick your city council to the curb, fire your city workers and then make us merge with the Township (which would permanently undo most of what Ypsilanti has ever been). We would have no voice whatsoever. AND – that means Depot Town and Downtown better get ready to move to “safer” places down Whitacre Road and get ready to say “Hay” to Mayor Stumbo – something I feel would be sad for this city given her track record.

  39. dragon
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    It is very important to remember that when choosing between two straw man arguments:

    1. Business owners are free to choose the politicians they support

    2. Citizens are free to choose where they spend their money

    Always pick the one that might earn you a free beer.

  40. Glen S.
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    Since I live in the City of Ypsilanti, most of my many comments on these related threads have focused on my fears about the impact the budget cuts/EFM legislation will have on my community.

    However, as has been pointed out in other threads, residents of many other Michigan communities — including our neighbors Ypsilanti Township, Ann Arbor, etc. — have a great deal to lose under the new Lansing regime.

    Personally, I believe the scope and scale of these threats is so great, and the time we may have to prevent the worst of the damage so short — that the time has come to put old City/Township rivalries, as well as our own internal factional warfare on hold (at least temporarily) in order to focus on the greater threat.

    As a longtime participant in many of these skirmishes, I’m not asking anybody to “forgive and forget.” However, I think it is worth asking: Don’t we stand a better chance of weathering this storm if we can build some consensus in our community about how to move forward through this, as well as keep open the possibility of collaborating with our neighbors, where that makes sense?

  41. Mr. X
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    I like the idea of Matt and Rene buying the community a few rounds of “We’re sorry” beers.

  42. Mr. X
    Posted March 11, 2011 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

    And I agree with you, Glen. As long as it’s going to happen anyway, I’d prefer that it happened on our terms, and not those of a Snyder crony.

  43. wetdolphinmissile
    Posted March 12, 2011 at 5:42 am | Permalink

    I agree with Mr. Glen too, and I agree about those skirmishes, it is time to band together

  44. Meta
    Posted March 14, 2011 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    The University of Michigan has announced that Rick Snyder would be their next commencement speaker.

    (Maybe they think that he’ll be less likely to cut their funding.)

  45. The 4 Browns
    Posted March 14, 2011 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    Only a fool would think there’s no coziness between Snyder and Mary Sue Coleman. And only a fool would think U of M will be as punished as EMU, Wayne State, and the other MI public institutions.

    People of Ann Arbor rise up? Doubtful. It’s cozy (and extremely white) over there.

  46. Kim
    Posted March 21, 2011 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    Washtenaw County Commissioners Conan Smith, according to, likes the EFM legislation.

    “Emergency manager legislation recently signed into law has caused quite a stir, but Washtenaw County Commissioner Conan Smith, a Democrat, likes the changes.”

  47. Glen S.
    Posted March 21, 2011 at 10:59 am | Permalink

    @ Kim

    If you read the whole story, it appears that Smith has many more reservations about the EFM plan that words of praise. Nevertheless, zealously pro-Snyder decided to cherry-pick his positive comment, and pair it a headline that spins this to suggest he’s in favor.

    Unfortunately (but not surprisingly) this will work in Snyder’s and the Republicans’ favors — since now, they’ll be able to say: “See, even liberal Democrats like Conan Smith think this is a good idea!”

  48. lorie thom
    Posted March 21, 2011 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    Well, I guess my question about where the Dem. leadership is has been answered. I am dissapointed and unimpressed.

  49. John Galt
    Posted March 21, 2011 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

    There is no shame in wearing brown, whether it be on the shirt or on the nose. I applaud Conan on his ability to perceive which way the political wind is blowing.

  50. Jsam
    Posted March 21, 2011 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

    Well John he may be wrong.

  51. karen
    Posted March 21, 2011 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    Is Conan behaving this way in order to suck up to Snyder? or it he sucking up to the Greffs?

  52. Glen S.
    Posted March 21, 2011 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    For those who may be interested, here is another reminder about tonight’s forum:

    Senator Rebekah Warren (D-Ann Arbor) will be hosting a town hall on Monday, March 21 to discuss the state budget and what it means to local residents. The town hall will include a panel discussion with various local representatives and a question and answer period where people can raise their individual concerns.

    WHO: Sen. Rebekah Warren, D-Ann Arbor
    Dedrick Martin, Superintendent of Ypsilanti Public Schools
    Paul Schreiber, Mayor of the City of Ypsilanti
    Dr. Howard Bunsis, Eastern Michigan University Professor and Chair of the American Association of University Professors Collective Bargaining Congress

    WHAT: “What Does Gov. Snyder’s Budget Mean to You?,” a panel discussion and town hall hosted by Sen. Warren to discuss with local residents the potential impact of Governor Snyder’s proposed budget.

    WHEN: Monday, March 21, 2011, 6:30 p.m.-8:00 p.m.

    WHERE: Room 101, Morris Lawrence Bldg., Washtenaw Community College
    4800 E. Huron River Drive, Ann Arbor, MI 48105

  53. T Timmons
    Posted April 5, 2011 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    I don’t know how realistic it is, but the Michigan Messenger is reporting that tea partiers might be joining up with liberals to fight Snyder on the Emergency Financial Manager Act.

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  1. […] a little late to the game in writing about what the Michigan Governor Rick Snyder has done, but I still think it’s worth noting. First Snyder proposed a budget that makes huge cuts in […]

  2. […] for a song at auction, once financial martial law is declared in Ypsi, and our appointed Emergency Financial Manager begins liquidating every asset the City owns. (I might also buy the bust of Demetrius Ypsilanti to […]

  3. […] As we’ve discussed in the past, according to reports, as many as 170 emergency financial managers may be trained and deployed over the next year. This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged AFL-CIO, Benton Harbor, collective bargaining, Emergency Financial Manager, Emergency Financial Manager’s Act, financial martial law, Jennifer Granholm, Joseph Harris, Joseph L. Harris, Mark Gaffney, Rick Snyder, threats to Democracy, union busting. Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL. « Finally coming out and stating the obvious, Scott Walker admits that his assault against collective bargaining had nothing to do with Wisconsin’s budget deficit […]

  4. […] powers that they wield to break union contracts and unseat democratically elected officials. [Part I, Part II, Part III, and Part […]

  5. […] put forward by Governor Rick Snyder upon taking office, which gives the State the authority to force out the democratically elected leaders of targeted communities, and replace them with appointe…, who are given the authority to, among other things, sell community assets, void contracts, and […]

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