Today, the Republican controlled Michigan Senate will vote on a bill giving newly elected Governor Rick Snyder, unprecedented power to:declare any town, city, or school district in fiscal emergency, and to appoint a fiscal manager to such a town or school district.
The fiscal manager, which can be a corporation, then gains the following powers:
- Authority to dismiss all or any of your elected officials
- Authority to privatize all or any city services, including schools
- Authority to break any and all contracts entered in to by your city via your elected officials, including collective bargaining contracts
- Authority to disincorporate your town or city
- Authority to merge your school district with another school district
Critics argue that the deep cuts in school funding and revenue sharing proposed by Snyder and Republican legislators could push many cities over the brink into bankruptcy, dramatically increasing the number of cities under the control of state-appointed emergency managers that will, after the passage of this bill, have unprecedented and — many argue — unconstitutional powers.
Rachel Maddow discusses this situation, and Republican plans for disaster capitalism with Naomi Klein. Watch:
For reference purposes, it may be helpful to note that Rick Snyder is a former CEO of Gateway, the same guy who sold it to the Chinese.
We are Wisconsin on the installment plan, Collective bargaining in Michigan is dying a death by a thousand cuts.