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Rick Snyder Says “Bend Over Michigan!”

Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

Usually I’m the last guy to write about (or follow) politics but when I heard about what’s happening in our state government, I had to say WTF!!!!
Now in an effort to not report bad info…here is what I understand about the EFM bill that is about to pass.

  • Snyder can declare that any town or city is in a “financial crisis”.
  • Then an “Emergency Financial Manager” (EFM) is given control over that city.
  • The EFM can change policies, break any city contracts (including those with unions), and even has final say over any elected officials…they can even remove said officials if they see fit.

Like I said, this may not be completely accurate but it is as I understand it. I suggest you read more about this and check out both the article below (written by proffesional newspeople) and the video as well. It sounds like the most unconstitutional shit ever but I assure you, It’s happening.

Article taken from the Detroit Free Press:

LANSING – With hundreds of union supporters loudly protesting outside their doors, Senate Republicans set up a final vote for Wednesday to give state-appointed emergency managers much greater power to overhaul city or school finances, including termination of employee union contracts.

The legislation drew more than 1,000 protesters to the Capitol, and many swarmed into the rotunda chanting “Kill the bill” and distracting the Senate during its regular session. Dozens packed the gallery above the Senate floor and were mostly quiet but admonished at one point for clapping and cheering.

Senate sergeants-at-arms watched crowd warily to assure it did not attempt to enter the chamber, where decorum is strictly enforced.

Senate Democrats, outnumbered 26-12, were repeatedly snubbed in their effort to amend a bill that has become one flashpoint for labor unions to rally against what they call an assault on bargaining rights.

Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville, R-Monroe, said the Senate would likely pass the legislation Wednesday

That invites yet another protest at the Capitol, where several rallies in recent weeks have been spurred in part by political clashes and pro-union demonstrations in Wisconsin’s Capitol building over Republican attempts to eliminate collective bargaining rights for state employees.

“There’s a lot going on in this country,” said retired Livonia school teacher Mike Kelly, 62, who was among those outside the Capitol for a rally.

He said the emergency manager bills are part of a larger conservative effort to crush unions’ political clout, especially in presidential elections.

“We didn’t create financial crisis, we’ve given up wages and concessions in benefits over the years,” he said. “This is about power.”

Inside the Capitol, on the rotunda’s second level, United Steelworkers member Tom Zalwacki, 56, of Jackson, watched others chant, “Shame on you,” and, “We are union,” aimed at the Senate.

Senate Republicans positioned a slightly revised version of the main bill that would give emergency financial managers, appointed by the state treasurer, more sweeping authority than under current law.

(Page 2 of 2)

If approved, the measure, along with companion bills, would go to the House for concurrence. The House has already passed a version of the legislation, with no Democratic support, and it would have to reconcile differences with the Senate version.

Either version would give emergency financial managers authority to dissolve local governments and school boards, assume management control and even order millage elections.

Senate Minority Leader Gretchen Whitmer, D-East Lansing, said giving emergency managers such power invites undue authority over cities and school districts, especially as many would face financial insolvency under Gov. Rick Snyder’s budget plan to cut their state aid.

Whitmer was angered by Senate Republicans’ defeat of a Democratic attempt to limit emergency financial managers’ pay to no more than the governor’s proscribed salary of $159,300. (Gov. Rick Snyder, who is independently wealthy, is accepting a $1 salary.)

Democrats pointed to Detroit Public Schools emergency manager Robert Bobb’s original compensation of $425,000 — $280,000 from the district, $145,000 from private foundations – and complained that the state could end up paying for high-priced managers who drastically cut pay for police, firefighters and teachers.

Bobb, who has clashed repeatedly with the Detroit school board over reforms, has called on the Legislature to give emergency managers like him more power to enact financial and management changes.

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