The week in review: right-to-work, transportation funding, and the Wayne County jail

Aug 17, 2013

  This week in review, Rina Miller and Jack Lessenberry discuss how right-to-work affects state employees, legislation for road improvements, and the half-finished Wayne County jail project.

State appeals court and unions clash on Right-to-work

A Michigan appeals court says the right-to-work law also applies to state employees.  The unions are saying that it does not. 

Jack Lessenberry says the disagreement “could mean an appeal to the state Supreme Court but that’s not likely to be favorable to the unions.”

Funding delayed for Michigan roads

A proposal to improve Michigan’s roads is unlikely to be on the November ballot.  Lawmakers disagree on the best way to raise money for transportation and will likely delay the bill until May. 

Lessenberry says “originally the Governor wanted to raise money to fix the roads by a combination of gasoline taxes and registration fees on cars.  Republicans in the legislature didn’t want to do that.  Instead, what they want to do is a sales tax increase.”

Future of Wayne County jail debated

Construction has stopped on the Wayne County jail project after managers already spent $120 million.  Governor Snyder is suggesting an alternative to finishing the building.

Lessenberry says “they’re not going to build it and what the Governor would like to do and what Wayne County executive Robert Ficano is now talking about is taking over the state’s old Scott Prison, renovating that, and putting county prisoners in there.”