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Democracy Returns To Flint Michigan

Democracy Returns To Flint Michigan

In the showdown between democracy and plutocracy in Flint, Michigan democracy may just be winning.

An order signed this week from Ingrham County Circuit Court Judge Rosemanrie Aquilina restores the authority of Flint’s elected mayor and city council. It also invalidates all decisions regarding Flint made by Michael Brown, the emergency manager Gov. Rick Snyder (R) appointed in lieu of the democratically elected mayor and city council, Snyder and the financial review team.

The emergency manager had been installed on October 5, which means that nearly four months of actions by Brown are now void. It also means that the state’s determination that Flint is in a state of “financial emergency” is no longer valid.

A spokesperson from the state treasury department indicated the state planned to appeal the decision.

In the meantime, the ruling shows the power of an independent judiciary. The dangerous expansion of emergency manager rule in Michigan poses a significant threat to our democracy but, at least in Flint, accountability has been returned to the people.

Related Stories:

Fascism Comes To Michigan

Emergency Manager Law Gives One Person Total Financial Control

Read more: , , , , , , , ,

Photo from Flint Broadside via flickr.

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98 comments

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7:59AM PDT on Apr 11, 2012

Susan M: I believe the cost per year for the E.M. is $187,000.00 on top of the cost of other elected no longer valid representatives like ward counsels and mayor. this from a city that is broke $$ wise. Seems that that wage is very over inflated to me.

7:50AM PDT on Apr 11, 2012

well it was short lived as it was re-re-overturned and brown is back in. I live in Flint and am not impressed.

12:12PM PDT on Apr 6, 2012

going by the links below, it was a good idea that the governor took over

Original Message:
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Democracy Returns To Flint Michigan
The latest news from Flint Union contracts targeted by Flint emergency manager as deadline looms http://www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2012/04/flint_emergency_manager_says_h_1.html Flint ordered to repay $1 million in federal housing funds http://www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2012/04/flint_ordered_to_repay_1_milli.html

9:24AM PDT on Apr 6, 2012

The latest news from Flint

Union contracts targeted by Flint emergency manager as deadline looms

http://www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2012/04/flint_emergency_manager_says_h_1.html

Flint ordered to repay $1 million in federal housing funds

http://www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2012/04/flint_ordered_to_repay_1_milli.html


9:50AM PDT on Mar 26, 2012

There used to be help in the form of kits available to most municipalities to deal with politicians like these and it only contained three items; a bucket of warm tar, a bag of chicken feathers and a long pole....

9:39AM PDT on Mar 26, 2012

Thank God for an independent judiciary, we can only pray that would be once again something we can be proud of about our SCOTUS. There should be no way for one person and his cronies to be able to override the voters will especially since these moves seem to be for the profit of the donors to the elected officials who get to declare these "emergencies". Thanks to the ongoing effects of the Republican caused 2008 financial collapse there are municipalities and school districts across our land going through tough times. These areas need jobs to regain fiscal stability, not some Orwellian power grab by those who ignore our laws and the peoples' will just so they can give away the people's assets in no bid sales to their corporate donors. Their goal is to do as much privatization of public assets as possible during the financial crisis they created. It is called catastrophic economics, something Republicans excel at, but only benefits them or their conies. If they were worried about fiscal stability they would not cut revenues by giving tax cuts to those who need them the least, giving away public assets at bargain basement prices in no bid auctions instead of selling those assets at fair market prices where the buyer actually bids. These people who got elected on the premise that they and they alone could create jobs with those tax cuts to their idols "the job creators", have done nothing to create jobs in any state or at the federal level.

8:46AM PDT on Mar 26, 2012

Yeah baby!

1:29AM PDT on Mar 26, 2012

For anyone who doubts these people are fascists, removing duly elected representatives at the local level is showing their true faces.

10:15PM PDT on Mar 25, 2012

Assuming the budget-estimates are correct and that no substantial off-budget spending tips the scales, the ruling that there is no emergency looks appropriate. http://www.cityofflint.com/finance/pdf/2010-2011_adoptedBGT.pdf

I can, however, see the original cause for concern: Compare the expenses here to the revenues above:
http://www.cityofflint.com/finance/2009_10BGT/adopted_bgt09_10.pdf
The economy must have taken quite a hit to reduce projected revenues by ~ 10%. I'm glad that the city council was responsible enough to reduce expenditures to match. If the economy kept dropping, though, it would have run into a deficit and that would have met the requirements for an emergency.

7:24PM PDT on Mar 25, 2012

Good job by the judge to restore the democratically elected people to their official duties, but isn't the job only half finished. As I recall, the overthrow of our democracy from within is known as "sedition" and the perpetrators of the crime of sedition face trial in a court of law. After conviction of the crime of sedition by a jury of their peers, the perpetrators face penalty.

I seem to recall that the penalties included a meal, a blindfold and a cigarette.

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