On the further downsizing, and possible merging of Ypsilanti’s police and fire departments

    According to AnnArbor.com, our elected leaders are apparently “weighing a plan to combine the city’s police and fire departments” into a single public safety entity, in hopes of cutting costs even further during this unprecedented period of sharply rising costs and falling revenues. Here’s a clip.

    …The proposal would cross-train police officers and firefighters, cutting the department down to three full-time firefighters.

    That threat, following years of budget trimming, prompted Fire Chief Jon Ichesco to submit his retirement plans in late September.

    The police department has 25 sworn officers and four civilians. The fire department has 18 firefighters.

    Through attrition, by the end of this year the fire department will be down to 15. If this plan is implemented the department would further decline to having just three firefighters, three lieutenants, and one fire marshal, who would also serve as a lieutenant.

    The plan calls for a fire deputy chief, police deputy chief and a director of public safety whose responsibilities would encompass the entire department. All together there would be about 42 employees. Of that number, 20 would be cross-trained public safety officers.

    If implemented, Ypsilanti would be the first city within the county to cross-train police and firefighters.

    Fire Union President Ken Hobbs said the plan would effectively eliminate a layer of command from the department and stretch resources thin.

    “Currently we have three captains and three lieutenants,” he said. “The plan eliminates captains. They’re two separate professions and if you try to combine the two, you’re going to water it down.

    “The police side is demanding and the fire is demanding. It’s a huge difference for us in the way we operate. I don’t think the city has a plan.”…

    Does anyone remember, back when we were debating whether or not to pass a City income tax, and people on the anti-tax side would refer to pro-tax people as “fear mongers” whenever they dared to bring up the fact that public safety employees would inevitably be cut, should the tax not pass? It’s kind of funny how silent these folks are now that we’re talking about cutting our full-time fire fighters down to just three, isn’t it?

    As for cross-training public safety employees so that they can both fight fires and shoot criminals, I think it’s a great idea. I’d go a step further, though. I’d also have them picking up trash as they make their way around town, so that we can lay off a few more public employees. As long as these new firefighter-cop hybrids of ours are running down alleys after a criminals, for instance, why not have them scoop up some candy wrappers in their hand that’s not engaged in dispensing lethal force? Or, better yet, maybe they could just cut out the middle man, and just have the criminals do the work of public safety officers? Why not have prisoners fighting our fires? They’re plentiful, cheap and expendable… Before you laugh, you should know that it’s already being discussed in Georgia. This, my friends, is the future that we’re leaving to our children.

    For those who are interested, these are all things that we’ve discussed here before…. We’ve had really great conversations over the past half-dozen years about living in a post public safety world, and the prospect of having to shoot our own bad guys and put out our own fires, like good, little “pull ourselves up by our bootstraps” Libertarians, should additional revenues not be forthcoming. And, now… finally… it looks like we’re going to get out chance to truly experience the exhilarating freedom that comes with radical self-sufficientcy. Finally, we’re throwing off the shackles of modern society, and boldly stepping into a paradise the likes of which hasn’t been seen here since our distant ancestors began living to be over 30 years old. Can you feel the excitement?

    [a note to young readers: I predict that a majority of jobs in the coming decade will be in the field of private security. The rich may have decided that they don't want to continue funding police and fire services for everyone else, but they sure as hell haven't decided that they themselves should live without security and fire protection.]

    And, yes, I realize I may be overreacting. Councilman Murdock did tell me, when I asked him about this, that there are examples of communities where police and fire departments have been merged quite successfully. I have my doubts that such a thing would work in a community like ours, but I suppose I should keep an open mind… And there’s always the possibility that we could strike a deal with our surrounding communities, to establish a robust, functional regional system, which could save us all money by eliminating redundancy… Or, we could do the unthinkable, and start fighting back against our state and local plutocrats, who have decided that their wealth is more precious than the lives of the people who make their delicious chai drinks at Starbucks, polish their produce at Whole Foods, teach their kids, etc… Before we start talking about revolution, though, I’d like to go back, for a minute, to the idea of a regional authority. Here, with more on that, is another clip from AnnArbor.com.

    …Ichesco has voiced his opposition to the plan and said there are other viable options worth considering.

    “There are options from a functional district, to going to a full authority to contracting out,” he said. “When you do this it has to be specific for you. It has to be tailored around your work… I think a regional authority is probably the most advantageous to go with.”

    Hobbs and Ichesco said prior regional authority discussions had taken place in 2007 with the city of Ann Arbor and its previous City Administrator Roger Fraser. Although those discussions never panned out, Ichesco said they recently were put back on the table.

    “They are again interested in looking at this regionally, but this public safety system is something Mr. Lange is familiar with,” Ichesco said.

    Schreiber confirmed that talks have taken place with other neighboring communities about a possible regional fire authority. Locally, other municipalities have not only explored, but ultimately created authorities. Chelsea has had a fire department since 1881, while the regional fire authority, which brought together the city, Lima, Lyndon and Sylvan townships, began in 1999.

    “I think when you stand back and look at it, it makes all the sense in the world to have a regional fire department,” Schreiber said. “It gets very complex very quickly and it’s going to take a considerable amount of effort from everybody.”

    Schreiber said the creation of a regional authority has been a goal of Ichesco’s for a long while.

    “In a perfect world that’s where I would like to see us go,” Schreiber said…

    And, one last thing. I’d be remiss if I didn’t remind people that this was a conversation that many of us have been wanting to have since 2007, when the prospect of a city income tax was first brought up. Several of us wanted to talk about what would happen to our public safety staffing levels, and the subsequent issues that would likely arise, should additional revenues not be secured, but, time and again, we were met with outright refusals to publicly discuss the facts. Keeping taxes low, it would seem, was more of a priority than giving the citizens of Ypsilanti the objective facts they needed to make informed decisions. And, now, we’re experiencing the result.

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      38 Comments

      1. Edward
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 6:12 am | Permalink

        I remember being told that no fire fighters or police officers would lose their jobs if I voted no on the City Income Tax.

      2. Edward
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 6:14 am | Permalink

        Now that I think about it, what happened here in Ypsi is kind of a microcosm of what’s playing out today at the national level with Romney/Ryan telling everyone that we can cut another 20% in taxes without experiencing any negative consequences.

      3. Stupid Hick
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 7:12 am | Permalink

        How long before someone suggests a “solution” is to give gun owners a tax break, or a voucher for hiring their own private security, because “government can’t do anything right, anyway”? Or how about cross-train teachers to fight fires and crimes, and vice-versa?

      4. Alexis
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 7:17 am | Permalink

        Just how much of a budget does the YFD need to continue current staffing levels and what’s the foreseen budget number that they are looking at having to work with? Specifically, just the budget for staffing, not equipment repairs – etc. The paper says they wanted a $1.3mil grant but was that just for one year for pay for 7 firefighters? (by my estimate, wages and health benefits etc for 7 firefighters might come to around $500k??unsure)
        I’m not a big fan of the YPD since good schools, jobs & health care prevent crime, and you don’t need to stalk around in a scary black stealth vehicle to write tickets, show up at car crashes and report crimes that already happened. In my fantasy world, the YPD to combines forces with the WCHO and pairs each cop with a social worker partner.
        In any case, I’m game to help fundraise to help the YFD out – if Michigan Radio gets half it’s budget from donors ($2.5mil in 2006) maybe the citizens of Ypsi can fundraise to keep at least one additional firefighter until we figure a way to better funding?

      5. Occupy Ypsilanti
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 9:11 am | Permalink

        Meanwhile, consider taking part in the upsizingof Ypsilanti’s progressive movement.

      6. Occupy Ypsilanti
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 9:12 am | Permalink

        http://21oct2012.wordpress.com/2012/10/15/36/

      7. Eel
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 9:36 am | Permalink

        (The following is not a threat of violence. It is merely a humorous statement.)

        If this newly formed department is looking for some houses to test this We’ll Use Police Officers to Fight our Fires scheme on, I’d suggest starting with the ones that had the most SCIT signs out front in the last election.

      8. Observer
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 10:15 am | Permalink

        There will be a revolution in this country. The rich think that they can avoid it, but they can’t. They’re going to feel it. It won’t start happening all at once. First the downspouts will be stolen from their houses and sold to scrap metal dealers. And it will grow from there. When you remove the ability of people, though education, to pull themselves up from poverty, you ensure violent conflict. Petty crimes will escalate to serious crimes, and the police won’t be around to help. They’ll be busy fighting fires across town. I can’t believe how shortsighted the wealthy are in this country. This is what happens, though. History keeps repeating. People never learn.

      9. Lynne
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 10:17 am | Permalink

        Over the weekend, some power lines came down in my backyard. I heard them come down but I didn’t think anything of it. Because I have neighbors who apparently are millionaires who can afford to shoot of big fireworks every night, I didn’t think much of the noise and flashes in my backyard. My power didn’t go out. The first I heard that there was a problem was when an Ypsilanti fire fighter came to my door to tell me. Luckily before I let my dogs outside. Without that kind of warning, either my dog or I could have easily been electrocuted in my own backyard. I am not sure how the fire department would have the resources to send someone out for a downed wire in a backyard (but no fire) if there were only 3 full time firefighters. I guess a police officer could do the warning just as easily but not if they have been cut to the bone too.

        We are talking about people’s lives here. As a community, we really have to figure out a way to raise more revenue. I hate the idea of resorting to fundraising but if that is what it takes, I am on board.

      10. Lynne
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 10:20 am | Permalink

        Observer, sadly, long before any such civil unrest reaches the truly wealthy in our country, it will make everyone else’s lives miserable. People who can isolate themselves from the poor and the middle class will just do it more and more. Don’t think for a minute that those wealthy people don’t already know that a revolution is a possible outcome of their policies, they just don’t care. They might add some barbed wire to the top of the fence of their gated communities.

      11. kjc
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 11:41 am | Permalink

        thanks for the link Occupy. It REALLY looks like that program of events is for October 15 instead of October 21 (the “021 program” being less clear). I’ve shared it with two people who thought so and so did I. Just fyi.

      12. Posted October 17, 2012 at 1:36 pm | Permalink

        kjc, we need you. ox, oy

      13. kjc
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

        hey i can copyedit. planning to come on Sunday.

      14. John Galt
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

        Why not ask school teachers to leave their lounges and do more? Surely the could stand around outside a burning building every now and then and throw water on a fire. And, during the summer, they could attend to our public parks. To be honest, nothing we ask civil employees to do is all that difficult. Reading from textbooks. Spraying water. Holding a radar gun. We could train monkeys to do it.

      15. Posted October 17, 2012 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

        I went to the Fire Department Open House a couple weekends ago. Here are my observations:

        Chief Ichesco is the Last of the Finest. Any city would be proud to have him. We got lucky.
        There is a lot of technology to fighting fires. Not an easy “bucket of water” job.
        The firehouse is pretty humble, except where it counts. The trucks are state of the art, but they are using 20 year old refrigerators for their food, and a weight set from the ’80′s to work out on. It ain’t no country club. I think we should take up a collection for them. They are much busier than you think. They cover about 7000 calls (including health emergencies) per year. They in fact got a call when I was visiting. Drop everything and out the door they went. Professionals doing a professional job. The reason they are leaving three firemen per shift is because that is the absolute minimum. You need two outside for one inside. That’s the OSHA rule.

      16. Edward
        Posted October 17, 2012 at 9:43 pm | Permalink

        I’ll have to reread it Demetrius, but don’t think it said they’d be staffing enough full-time firefighters to send three to each fire. I think the AnnArbor.com article said that they’d ahve three full-time firefighters total.

      17. Jennifer
        Posted October 18, 2012 at 5:49 am | Permalink

        Sure, fundraising, I can pitch in. But imagine how much money we could raise–with a minimum of hassle and maximum of fairness–if in 2007 or earlier this year an income tax had passed, so that everyone in this community who benefits from the presence of a well-equipped force of first responders, could pitch in a little bit.

        In this case, sucks to have been right.

        Public radio works ok on the pay-if-you-want-to model, I guess; government, not so much.

      18. Glen S.
        Posted October 18, 2012 at 6:02 am | Permalink

        So what happens when our “public safety” officers are busy responding to, lets say, a small kitchen fire on one side of town, and a medical emergency on the other side of town? Does that mean that we would effectively have no police coverage during certain periods of time?

        Likewise, what would happen if there were two fairly significant emergency situations (or a single large one) that required substantial amounts of both fire and police coverage? I know such situations would be rare, but they are not out of the realm of possibility.

        This is yet another plan that makes “economic sense” on paper, but in reality will end up putting our public safety officers, and our community, at risk just to save a few dollars.

      19. KKT
        Posted October 18, 2012 at 8:44 am | Permalink

        Can someone explain to me, under this system, how many full-time fire fighters we will have? Like Edward, I take the quote “cutting the department down to three full-time firefighters” to mean that there will be a total of three full-time fire fighters, perhaps augmented by cross-trained individuals who also serve as police officers. I take this to mean that there will never be three full-time fire fighters on the clock at any one time. If that’s the case, what does that mean in tactical terms? Can we still expect a fire fighter to come into our burning home and save us, or will they just fight the fire from outside? This is a critical question.

      20. Elf
        Posted October 18, 2012 at 9:53 am | Permalink

        Speaking of gated communities, does anyone remember the footage shot last year when a thousand protestors marched to the gated community in which Governor Snyder lives? Does anyone remember the people on the other side of the gate, chuckling smugly at the people of Detroit who had traveled to Ann Arbor to protest the fact that their schools and communities were imploding? There’s no empathy.

        http://www.eclectablog.com/2012/01/liveblog-mlk-day-march-on-home-of-mich.html

      21. Posted October 18, 2012 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

        Why is the way we have it now the only way it can possibly be? I understand perfectly well the artificial pressures of the anti-tax movement on municipal finance, and I’m definitely against the nihilism of ypsi’s local knee-jerk tax opponents, but that doesn’t mean the way we do it now is the perfect, or best, or right way to do it.

        Troy has a hybrid department: 10 full time firefighters to cover a city of 80,000 people spread across 33.6 square miles. (They also have 180 trained on-call firefighters, also known as “volunteer”, even though they’re paid for their training and the calls they go on.) Their website claims they’re in the top 4% of ISO ratings nationwide.

        Farmington Hills, 79,000 people 33.3 square miles, 40 full-time and 91 paid-on-call (“volunteer”) firefighters. They only have one fire station staffed full-time for the entire city; the other substations are on-call.

        I was recently talking to a community leader in Southfield who said they too are looking at changing to a hybrid (career + paid-on-call) system, since they see it working so well and saving money in those other two cities.

        I offer up these communities as examples of cities (with lots of people, manufacturing plants and all of the chemical concerns that come with them, and high-rise office and apartment towers) to show that other models can and do work in cities nearby.

        What’s so special about Ypsilanti that we are uniquely unable to cope without an all-full-time fire department? I’m not going to say that we could just turn the key and change over to a hybrid system and magically save money tomorrow, but we should at least make sure we’re giving reasonable consideration to our options.

      22. Smelly Tongues
        Posted October 18, 2012 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

        I do think we ought to entertain the idea of having on-call (volunteer) firefighters to help supplement our local force. I think it could work…
        I think the real worry that people have here though is this notion of cross-training our police force. Like another poster said, what happens when there are fires or health emergencies on opposite ends of town and then a police response is needed elsewhere. This is what worries me more than anything.
        So maybe the city ought to look more at a volunteer force and not so much at trying to take our already diminishing number of cops and spreading them thinner.

      23. BrianR
        Posted October 18, 2012 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

        The problem about stuff you read on the internet or in local newspapers is that it’s often wrong.

        City Council is not weighing a plan to combine police and fire.

        At this time, there is no plan.

        When we hired Ralph Lange to be the City Manager, one of the things he wanted to do was explore Public Safety since it was something he implemented in Albion when he was City Manager there.

        Council is allowing him to explore that. If and when he comes up with a plan, we’ll evaluate it.

        The reason Council hasn’t talked much about this (other than there is no plan) is because negotiating in the newspapers is a disaster.

        It seems like everyone is speculating about what will or could happen even though they don’t know what they are talking about. That leads to chaos and misinformation.

        Communities with public safety all operate in a very similar manner. There are dedicated police officers because you need detectives, property officers, and the like. If Ypsilanti went to public safety, we would also have dedicated police officers.

        There are dedicated fire fighters in public safety departments because you need people who can get the trucks to the emergency. And those people can’t be on road patrol somewhere two miles away from the station. If Ypsilanti went to public safety, we would also have dedicated fire fighters. The article said there would be seven.

        There are also public safety officers who are cross-trained. If Ypsilanti went to public safety, we’d have a group of dedicated public safety officers.

        Ypsilanti would still fight fires there same way we do today. Ypsilanti would also patrol the streets the same way.

        And like I said earlier, when we get a plan, we’ll take a look at it and evaluate it and certainly share it with the public.

        Finally, no one has lost their jobs or would lose their jobs if Ypsilanti went to public safety.

      24. Mike Bodary
        Posted October 18, 2012 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

        BrianR is correct and explains it well. Anythting at this point is just the beginnings of weighing options, not even close to a plan yet. Ralph Lange had a fresh idea that council thinks at least deserves a look into. The money WILL run out, probably in less than 2 years. With the voters turning down revenues, loss of the SAFER grant and no help from Lansing, we got the message that every idea deserves a look. I’ll be off council soon and the new council will face tough decisions.
        KKT – the answer is that there would be more and less. Expected attrition by fire and police and cross training of both makes for dual roles in almost all personnel. A fire alarm causes the command officer to send PSOs from various duties to meet the truck(s) at the scene. When other departments respond for back-up some patrols can return to normal. More than likely HVA would be called on for emergency medical calls without YFD first response.

      25. Mike Bodary
        Posted October 18, 2012 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

        Smelly Tongues- On-call (paid, not volunteer) have such slow response time it often becomes a task of pouring water into the smoking hole in the ground.

      26. tom
        Posted October 18, 2012 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

        I like it when people with first hand knowledge of city planning and city council post on here. Thanks.

      27. KitchenAid
        Posted October 18, 2012 at 8:04 pm | Permalink

        @tom: agreed. A shame, though, when they sound like smug fucks.

      28. Elvis Costello
        Posted October 18, 2012 at 10:23 pm | Permalink

        As a retired firefighter, ler me weigh in…
        First, if there is a three person department, there would be one on each shift. That firefighter would maintain the trucks, do the state reports, all the other stuff, and when a fire call comes in, would drive the fire apparatus to the scene and set up. He/She would wait for arriving personnel (whoever they are), and set up for a fire attack. The fire station in Superior Township at MacArthur Blvd was a one man station, I don’t know if that’s the case today. It would be instructive to talk to some of the guys who worked that station about the ramifications of a one man station (I use “man” as the generic firefighter, I know there are women) understanding that there were other Superior Firefighters in route.
        Second, Troy has relatively new buildings, and a higher economic level than Ypsilanti and Ypsi Township. They have STRINGENT building codes and STRICT enforcement of the codes and buildings that were NOT built at the turn of the century. They have the luxury of a paid on call department that I don’t believe our area has.
        Third, My thought would be that YFD would not run EMS. I would think that HVA would now run all EMS calls, as cross training Police to do firefighting is one thing (and as a personal opinion, I disagree with this idea), but to do EMT certification is something much different with very demanding and regular Continuing Ed.
        Fourth, Mutual aid agreements…How will YFD be able to respond to it’s mutual aid partners with sufficient personnel and resources? Mutual aid is meant to be a quid pro quo, not a supplement of “weaker” departments by “stronger” departments (I only speak in terms of numbers, not in quality or competence). If Ypsilanti becomes a “one man shift”, how does the quid pro quo get met? It can’t.
        Fifth, Brian is incorrect when he writes, “Ypsilanti would still fight fires there same way we do today. Ypsilanti would also patrol the streets the same way.” I would ask how Brian figures that is true…You, by the nature of the changes made, would NOT fight fires or patrol the streets the same”. Those PSO officers would have competing demands on their time, training, and priorities. Guess what, Police work will always win over.
        Sixth, A Fire Chief once told me, we did our jobs too well. We pushed fire education in schools, gave away free detectors, wrote fire codes. All these things reduced the number and severity of fires. Fewer people died and more property was saved. Now, in times of budget stress, the Fire Department is an easy target. What folks have to remember is that we are the best insurance you have. When the phone rings, 24/365, you will have a staffed big red/yellow truck show up to mitigate your disaster, big or small. There’s no delay, there’s no “get in line”, there’s just a response. If this amorphous proposal comes forth, that contract changes.
        Seventh, how much will your insurance rates increase when your fire department is reduced to a paid on call? Maybe a little, maybe a lot, but I’ll bet there will be corresponding rate increases. They MAY be less than any tax increase to keep a full-time, staffed department, but I’d bet you will see increases, and those increases will hit your commercial buildings at a higher rate than your homes. How will your businesses respond to this “hidden” increase?
        I hope I have added to the conversation. I realize that Ypsilanti faces really bad choices, but cutting Fire services to the extent described, I believe, would be a mistake.

      29. anonymous
        Posted October 18, 2012 at 11:49 pm | Permalink

        Unfortunately Brian these untrustworthy channels that you mention are the only avenues available to us. There was a young candidate once who promised to keep his constituents up to date on everything once he got on Council. That didn’t work out though.

      30. Posted October 19, 2012 at 12:22 am | Permalink

        Will Ypsilanti’s fire rating change? It’s the number insurance companies use to set rates. It’ll be interesting if everyone just has to pay higher rates. Personally, I’d rather take the chance on firefighters extinguishing my home rather than watch it burn to the ground, but that’s me.

      31. Watching Ypsi.
        Posted October 19, 2012 at 5:28 am | Permalink

        We could continue to give massive tax breaks to the already wealthy; while they look down at us and laugh their asses off. Classic.

        Let’s all have a nice, get fucked day, again and again.

      32. Erika
        Posted October 19, 2012 at 7:36 am | Permalink

        I’m a little tired of the confusion caused by the discussion of whether or not employees will lose their jobs. The city has and will lose positions, even if the positions are emptied by people who have retired or left. I agree that the difference is extremely important to those individuals who could have been laid off if one of their coworkers had not retired or moved on, but it leaves the general public with the sense that nothing has changed. It’s kind of like the confusion that the NO people used regarding millage rates (higher rate only means higher bill when property values aren’t falling).

        When we employee lose positions, that means fewer employees left to do the jobs that still need to be done. Also, the idea of funding public safety with fundraisers is depressing.

        I have noticed a few (albeit anecdotal) instances lately of calling the police dispatch, only to be told that nothing can be done for the situation at hand. For example, when the person that I thought I could trust to stop over to get my mail and check to see that my house was in order while I was out of town fell off the wagon and went on a crazy drunken/drug fueled bender in my home less than 48 hours after I had left him with my key, the police dispatcher told me that since I had given him the key, I would have to go to court to have him evicted. They would not send anyone out to check on his condition or the condition of my home (I was calling from out of state). It was only after someone found him lying in the fetal position in a pool of blood on my basement floor that they would respond. I have had several neighbors call for various problems (a woman screaming, a crack deal going on, etc) and they have been told either “we don’t have any officers that can respond right now” or that they would need to actually see the drug deal happen before they could do anything.

        I guess we’ll just have to adjust our expectations regarding what should initiate police intervention and get more fire extinguishers for our houses – the new normal.

      33. Frolixo
        Posted October 19, 2012 at 8:27 am | Permalink

        I’m all for this if it means cops will stop crime with axes.

      34. JC
        Posted October 19, 2012 at 8:30 am | Permalink

        Dear neighbors,

        Consider joining us Sunday for a daylong teach-in at EMU and The Dreamland. Topics to be covered:

        Snyder’s Corporate Michigan
        Lessons of the Chicago Teacher’s Strike
        LGBT Inclusion in Education
        Student Unionism
        Unpunished Financial Crime
        Eviction and Foreclosure Defense
        Making Community Space
        FatPhobia
        Youth Activism and Social Media
        The Unoccupieds
        EMU and the EAA
        Vote the Lesser Evil?
        Using Your Story and Organizing
        Tactics for Feminisms
        Street Theater
        PermaCulture
        LED Bombing
        Horizontalidad in Argentina

        http://21oct2012.wordpress.com/2012/10/15/36/

      35. Watching Ypsi.
        Posted October 19, 2012 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

        wellaware1.com

        Just watch the videos. Have an open mind. Let the videos progress.

        If you still don’t see it. Move on. Enjoy life.

        Be ready.

      36. Watching Ypsi.
        Posted October 19, 2012 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

        Let me leave you with one more thing.

        Rick Snyder, 250 million venture capitalist from Ann Arbor?
        I’ve been in this are for 25 plus years. Never hear of him?
        Suddenly Rick Snyder shows. Hmmmmmm.
        I know a ton of weathy businessmen from Ann Arbor.
        Not Rick Snyder.

        Keep an open mind, if not, move on. Enjoy your life.

        Be Ready.

      37. Bob Henry
        Posted October 21, 2012 at 8:54 am | Permalink

        Everything should be privatized. It drives out waste and increases efficiency. Have heard of Enron?

      38. a.k.
        Posted May 11, 2013 at 6:55 am | Permalink

        But the dough-faced man on the segway promised me that if we voted against the city income tax that police and fire staffing levels would remain unchanged. I don’t understand.

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      2. [...] etc. This, of course, is an eventuality that we’ve discussed at length before. Here was my contribution to the conversation at the time. Does anyone remember, back when we were debating whether or not to [...]

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