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Michigan: Financial Manager Bill passes Michigan Senate

March 10, 2011

The legislation also grants school district emergency financial managers total authority over academics and curriculum.

March 10, 2011 Detroit News reports:

Financial manager bill passes Michigan Senate
Lawmakers crafting final version; Snyder’s approval expected
Karen Bouffard / Detroit News Lansing Bureau

Lansing— Legislation that would allow emergency financial managers to throw out union contracts and overrule elected officials in financially distressed municipalities and school districts was approved Wednesday by the state Senate. Similar legislation passed in the House in February, and the two chambers are working on a final version to send to Gov. Rick Snyder. Snyder has called for more authority for emergency financial managers and is expected to sign the legislation into law.

The legislation outlines a detailed process to help communities and school districts right their finances.

But labor unions and local officials object to provisions that would allow emergency financial managers to ignore union contracts, undo local ordinances and dissolve city councils and school boards.

Minority Leader Gretchen Whitmer, D-East Lansing, called the legislation an “unfair and unjustified power grab.”

“This bill represents bigger government, more bureaucrats (and) less accountability and less transparency,” Whitmer said, sending up a cheer from opponents outside the chamber that could be heard on the Senate floor. “Where the heck is the tea party now?”

The chambers are in agreement on the key components of the legislation, which would grant emergency financial managers nearly absolute power to control purse strings.

The legislation also grants school district emergency financial managers total authority over academics and curriculum.

From The Detroit News: http://detnews.com/article/20110310/POLITICS02/103100375/Financial-manager-bill-passes-Michigan-Senate#ixzz1GErnEquf

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