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Fri December 2, 2011
In this morning's news...
"Detroit needs to be run by Detroiters"
That's what Mayor Bing tweeted last night prior to his press conference with members of city council and other Detroit leaders. It was a show of unity against the threat of an impending state review of city finances.
The tweet continued, "We know what needs to be done and we are ready to do it."
Mayor Bing and leaders were reacting to what Mayor Bing said was Governor Snyder's intent to launch a 30-day review of the city's finances this week (Snyder said those claims are inaccurate).
Bing is proposing layoffs and steep cuts to the city's budget. He and members of the city council have been battling over the cuts.
Michigan Radio's Sarah Cwiek reported on the press conference last night:
Bing says it would be helpful if the state offered feedback on some of the city’s proposals, and was more clear about its expectations.
“I would appreciate if the state would come back and say what they don’t like about our plan, or what they do like, or can they enhance it,” Bing says. “I think they’ve got to be a party to this.”
Bing also repeated calls for the state to pay Detroit $220 million it owes from a 1998 revenue sharing agreement. Governor Snyder and Republicans in the state legislature have been cool to the idea.
Conyers asks U.S. Attorney General for review of Michigan's EM law
The threat of an emergency manager in Detroit led to a call for a review of Michigan's emergency manager law from U.S. Congressman John Conyers (D-Detroit). Conyers is asking U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to review the law.
The emergency manager law allows a state-appointed official to strip local officials of their power and to dissolve union contracts.
Jonathan Oosting of MLive.com reported on the request from Conyers:
Conyers asked Holder to consider two separate constitutional issues: Whether the law violates the Contract Clause by allowing EM's to terminate collective bargaining rights and whether is violates Article 4, Section 4 that provides for a republican form of government.
"The Supreme Court has previously held that this clause guarantees the people the right to a democratically elected form of government," he wrote. "It goes without saying that appointing an unelected manager in place of an elected mayor, city council and other public officials would be totally anithetical to the concept of democracy."
Faculty at CMU close to a new contract
After a long battle over a new contract that included a strike on the first day of classes, Central Michigan University says it has has a tentative agreement on a new three-year contract with the CMU Faculty Association. The Associated Press reports "the deal with the CMU Faculty Association was reached after a 14-hour negotiating session facilitated by a county judge. Details of the tentative agreement weren't released pending ratification."