>>MICHIGAN’S TREASURY
DEPARTMENT IS WORKING OVERTIME, AS MORE CITIES
FALL INTO FINANCIAL CRISIS.>>>PLUS, A CLOSER LOOK AT
THE U.S. SENATE RATE.>>>FIGHTS IN LANSING THIS
WEEK OVER TAX CUTS.>>>AND WE SPENT WHAT ON
KWAME KILPATRICK’S DEFENSE? ANALYSIS OF STORIES MAKING
NEWS ACROSS THE STATE. MiWEEK STARTS RIGHT NOW.
>>MICHIGAN’S TURNAROUND IS BEING POWERED BY THINGS WE
DO BETTER THAN ANYWHERE ELSE IN THE WORLD.
TODAY’S GLOBAL LEADERS TURN TO MICHIGAN TO WORK ON THEIR
MOST DIFFICULT PROBLEMS. THAT’S BECAUSE THE
ENGINEERING TALENT THIS THIS PART OF THE WORLD IS SIMPLY
THE BEST. THESE OPPORTUNITIES ARE ARE
HERE AND STARTING TO HAPPEN. THE VISION FOR THE
NEW MICHIGAN. SHARE IT.
TALK IT UP. DRIVE IT HOME.
>>FUNDING IS ALSO PROVIDED BY DELTA. § § § § §>>GOOD EVENING.
HAPPY TO HAVE YOU WITH US FOR MiWEEK.
I’M CHRISTY McDONALD. EVERYWHERE YOU LOOK THIS
WEEK, IT’S ALL ABOUT THE MONEY.
THE STATE TREASURY DEPARTMENT IS WORKING
OVERTIME WITH MORE CITIES IN FINANCIAL TROUBLE, AND WAYNE
COUNTY IS SLIDING TOWARD THE EDGE.
WE’LL LOOK AT WHAT THEY NEED TO DO AND IF IT’S EVEN
POSSIBLE TO AVOID AN EMERGENCY MANAGER.
>>>PLUS, THE HOLDUPS IN DETROIT’S BANKRUPTCY CASE
THAT COULD TACK ON YEARS.>>>ALSO TONIGHT, A LOOK AT
THE 2014 ELECTION. THE FIGHT FOR THE OPEN U.S.
SENATE SEAT BETWEEN GARY PETERS AND TERRI LYNN LAND.
>>>SQUABBLES IN LANSING OVER A TAX CUT, AND
REPUBLICANS ARE AT ODDS WITH THE GOVERNOR.
BUT WILL IT MEAN SAVINGS FOR YOU?
>>>AND GUESS HOW MUCH WE SPENT ON KWAME
KILPATRICK’S LAWYERS?>>>BUT FIRST, THE NUMBER OF
CITIES IN FINANCIAL CRISIS ACROSS MICHIGAN IS GROWING.
JUST THIS WEEK HIGHLAND PARK AND ROYAL OAK TOWNSHIP TRIED
TO PERSUADE THE STATE THEY DIDN’T NEED AN
EMERGENCY MANAGER. AND WAYNE COUNTY IS
STRUGGLING THIS WEEK TO FIND A WAY TO CUT THEIR DEFICIT,
INCLUDING SPINNING OFF WASTEWATER FACILITIES AND
CUTTING INTO THE PROSECUTOR AND SHERIFF’S BUDGETS AGAIN.
NOLAN FINLEY OF THE DETROIT NEWS AND STEPHEN HENDERSON
OF THE DETROIT FREE PRESS ARE HERE.
LET’S LOOK AT WAYNE COUNTY AND THE PROBLEMS THEY HAVE
RIGHT NOW. THEY HAVE A DEFICIT BETWEEN
$175 AND $220 MILLION.>>OPERATING DEFICIT.
PLUS THEY’VE GOT A HUGE PROBLEM WITH THE
PENSION SYSTEM. THEY MAY BE AS MUCH AS 60%
UNDERFUNDED IN THAT PENSION SYSTEM, DON’T HAVE THE MONEY
THEY NEED TO MEET THEIR PROMISES.
THEY’RE PROBABLY IN WORSE SHAPE THAT DETROIT IS.
>>THEY’RE LOOKING AT WHAT THEY CAN CUT.
IS IT POSSIBLE TO CUT THEIR WAY OUT OF THIS?
>>I THOUGHT ROBERT FICANO PUT TOGETHER A PRETTY DECENT
PLAN THIS WEEK THAT HE’S UNVEILING FOR THE COMMISSION
TO REALLY TRY TO ATTACK THE IMBALANCES THAT THEY HAVE.
IS IT POSSIBLE, I MEAN, YOU’VE GOT TO GET THE
COMMISSION TO GO ALONG. THEY ARE DEEP CUTS.
IT WOULD ENTAIL SPINNING OFF THIS WATER TREATMENT SYSTEM
THAT THEY HAVE. IT’S A DRAMATIC MOVE.
WHAT IT REMINDED ME OF WAS THE KIND OF THING WE DIDN’T
DO IN DETROIT WHEN WE WERE IN DEEP TROUBLE, THAT WE
DIDN’T COME UP WITH A PLAN THAT WAS A FRONTAL ATTACK ON
THE STRUCTURAL PROBLEM, BUT IT MAY BE TOO LATE.
I MEAN, THE PROBLEMS THEY HAD WITH THE PENSION THAT
NOLAN MENTIONED ARE HUGE, AND AS FICANO SAID, THE BIG
PROBLEM IN THE COUNTY IS THE DIP IN THE TAX BASE.
COUNTIES ARE FUNDED ALMOST EXCLUSIVELY OFF PROPERTY
TAXES, AND WAYNE COUNTY HAS LOST MORE OF THAT THAN
ANOTHER COUNTIES DID AND HAS NOT RECOVERED AS MUCH.
>>TO THE TUNE OF LIKE $300 MILLION SINCE 2008.
>>I DON’T THINK IT’S QUITE THAT MUCH BUT THAT NUMBER
GROWS EVERY TIME FICANO TALKS ABOUT IT, AND IT IS
COMING BACK SLOWLY. THE BASIC PROBLEM IS, IN
WAYNE COUNTY, NO DIFFERENCE IN THE PROBLEM, IN DETROIT,
IT’S MISMANAGEMENT. YOU HAD FOLKS LIKE FICANO
AND McNAMARA BEFORE HIM WHO PUT POLITICS FIRST AND THEIR
POLITICAL AM BIGS BEFORE THE GOOD OF THE COUNTY, MADE A
LOT OF PROMISES, SPENT A LOT OF MONEY.
INSTEAD OF DELIVERING SERVICES, THEY EXPANDED IN A
LOT OF DIFFERENT AREAS. IT’S BEEN A MISMANAGED
COUNTY, AND I’M NOT SURE IT’S THAT MUCH BETTER
MANAGED TODAY EVEN IN THE FACE OF THIS CRISIS.
HE PUT SOME CUTS ON THE TABLE YESTERDAY.
>>DEEP CUTS.>>GOOD CUTS ON THE TABLE,
AND THAT’S ESSENTIAL, BUT HE DIDN’T ADDRESS THESE
LEGACY COSTS. THAT’S STILL A POLITICAL HOT
POTATO HE WON’T TOUCH.>>AND THE QUESTION WITH THE
LEGACY COSTS, AGAIN, IF THE STATE IS HELPING DETROIT
WITH ITS LEGACY COSTS, THE NUMBERS ARE NOT
SIGNIFICANTLY DIFFERENT BETWEEN DETROIT AND WAYNE
COUNTY WITH REGARD TO THAT PROBLEM.
I’M NOT SURE — AND I ASKED THE GOVERNOR ABOUT THIS LAST
WEEK: AT WHAT POINT DO OTHER PEOPLE IN THE STATE RAISE
THEIR HANDS AND SAY “YOU’RE HELPING DETROIT.
WE NEED THE SAME HELP. WHERE’S OURS?”
>>CAN YOU IMAGINE THE OUTCRY IF THE STATE STEPS IN
TO BAIL OUT THE DETROIT PENSION SYSTEM IN THE WAY
IT’S TRYING TO DO FOR DETROIT, FICANO HAS THOSE
OUT THERE 42 YEARS OLD DRAWING $100,000 A YEAR, AND
THE STATE’S GOING TO SAY “WE’LL COVER”?
>>YOU SAID THERE WERE PRETTY GOOD CUTS.
DO THEY HAVE THE TIME TO IMPLEMENT?
SPINNING OFF THE WASTEWATER FACILITY, THAT’S GOING TO
TAKE TIME TO GET REGIONAL AUTHORITY.
WHEN YOU CUT THE SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT, THEY’RE
LITIGATING TO STOP CUTS. KYM WORTHY SAID THIS IS A
C.E.O. WHO DOESN’T GIVE A DAMN ABOUT PUBLIC SAFETY.
>>YOU HAVE A STRUCTURAL PROBLEM IN WAYNE COUNTY.
FICANO’S THE C.E.O., BUT HE ALSO HAS THE COURTS WHICH
ARE MANAGED INDEPENDENTLY AND THE PROSECUTOR’S OFFICE
AND SHERIFF’S OFFICE THAT ARE ALL MANAGED INDEPENDENTLY
BY ELECTED OFFICIALS WHO DON’T ANSWER TO HIM.
THERE ISN’T ENOUGH MONEY TO DO ALL THE THINGS THAT
NEED TO BE DONE.>>THERE IS NEVER GOING TO
BE ENOUGH MONEY AS LONG AS YOU HAVE THREE OR FOUR
AUTONOMOUS ELECTED OFFICIALS WHO CAN SPEND WHAT THEY WANT
WITHOUT CONS. THEY — CONSEQUENCE.
I DON’T THINK AN EMERGENCY MANAGER HELPS BECAUSE AN
EMERGENCY MANAGER WOULD TAKE OVER THE BOARD AND THE
EXECUTIVES FUNCTION. IT’S UNCLEAR WHAT IT WOULD
TAKE FOR THE EMERGENCY MANAGER TO ALSO TAKE OVER
THE SHERIFF, PROSECUTOR, AND THE CLERK.
>>THEY’RE ALL RIGHT, RIGHT? KYM WORTHY IS RIGHT ABOUT
THE MONEY SHE NEEDS TO RUN THE PROSECUTOR’S OFFICE.
THERE’S A LOT OF CRIME IN WAYNE COUNTY, AND SHE IS
PROBABLY ONE OF THE MOST EFFECTIVE ELECTED PUBLIC
OFFICIALS WE HAVE AT HER JOB.
IT’S NOT CHEAP. THE SHERIFF’S OFFICE NOW, I
THINK, YOU GET A LOT OF APPOINTEES RUNNING AROUND
THERE, COSTING A LOT OF MONEY, MAYBE YOU COULD
REDUCE THOSE, BUT THE JAIL, BECAUSE IT’S NOT A NEW JAIL,
BECAUSE WE WASTED ALL THAT MONEY ON THE NEW JAIL.
>>AND IT’S NOT HAPPENING.>>MANAGING THAT JAIL IS
MORE EXPENSIVE THAN IT SHOULD BE BECAUSE OF THE WAY
IT’S SET UP. THERE IS NO VILLAIN HERE YOU
CAN POINT TO AND SAY YOU’RE THE PERSON WASTING A LOT OF
MONEY AND IF YOU WOULD JUST STOP WE WOULD BE OKAY.
THERE’S JUST NOT ENOUGH MONEY BECAUSE OF THE WAY THE
REVENUE IS AND BECAUSE OF THE LEGACY COSTS.
THERE’S NOT ENOUGH MONEY TO PROVIDE THE SERVICES.
>>HANG ON. WE DON’T WANT TO FIND WHO
THE VILLAIN IS, BUT WHERE’S THE SOLUTION?
IF YOU SAY AN EMERGENCY MANAGER IS NOT EVEN THE
SOLUTION, YOU TALKING ABOUT BANKRUPTCY?
>>YOU PROBABLY ARE TALKING ABOUT A BANKRUPTCY.
YOU SAY THERE’S NOT ENOUGH ENOUGH MONEY, BUT WAYNE
COUNTY SPENDS MORE THAN MACOMB OR OAKLAND, ALMOST AS
MUCH PUT TOGETHER AS THOSE TWO, AND THEY DO A FAR
BETTER JOB OF MANAGING.>>IT ALSO PROVIDES MORE
SERVICES THAT MACOMB OR OAKLAND, AND THAT’S WHAT
THOSE COSTS ARE ABOUT. NOW, YOU CAN SAY MAYBE WE
DON’T NEED TO PROVIDE THOSE SERVICES, MAYBE THE COUNTY
STEPS BACK AND DOESN’T DO THAT, BUT —
>>YOU’RE LOOKING, ACROSS THE BOARD, EVERYTHING COSTS
MORE IN WAYNE COUNTY. IT’S NOT JUST —
>>THE LEGACY COSTS, SURE.>>IT COSTS THEM MORE TO DO
THE SAME THING THAN IT DOES IN OAKLAND COUNTY.
>>THERE IS NO QUESTION ABOUT THAT.
>>BROOKS PATTERSON STOOD UP IN THE STATE OF THE COUNTY
ADDRESS AND SAID WE HAVE $280 MILLION CASH ON
HAND HERE. I WOULD DOUBT THAT THE
PEOPLE OF OAKLAND COUNTY FEEL LIKE THEY’RE GETTING
LESS GOVERNMENT FROM THEIR COUNTY THAN PEOPLE IN —
>>I MEAN, BUT THEY ARE. THEY ARE GETTING FEWER
SERVICES THAN THEY OFFER IN WAYNE COUNTY.
THE QUESTION IS WHETHER COUNTY GOVERNMENT SHOULD BE
PROVIDING THOSE SERVICES OR COULD AFFORD IT —
AFFORD TO. IT’S NOT LIKE THEY’RE JUST
COLLECTING MONEY AND POCKETING IT.
>>A LOT OF THAT HAS HAPPENED.
>>BUT I WANT TO BACK UP, BEFORE WE LEAVE THIS TOPIC,
A BIG-PICTURE LOOK AT A LOT OF THE OTHER CITIES WHO ARE
NOW TUMBLING DOWN THE ROAD TO CRISIS.
IF AN EMERGENCY MANAGER IS NOT THE SOLUTION FOR WAYNE
COUNTY, IS IT STILL A GOOD SOLUTION FOR SMALLER CITIES
LIKE PERHAPS A LINCOLN PARK WHO IS NOW —
>>IT’S A SHORT-TERM FIX. ALL OF THESE CITIES ARE
FALLING INTO THIS SITUATION FOR SIMILAR PROBLEMS THAT
ARE MUCH MORE STRUCTURAL. THE LEGACY COSTS WHICH
YOU’VE GOT TO FIGURE OUT A WAY TO REORGANIZE THAT DEBT.
>>ARE WE GOING TO SEE MORE BANKRUPTCIES, DO YOU THINK,
IN THE STATE OF MICHIGAN.>>YOU’RE EITHER GOING TO
HAVE TO DO BANKRUPTCIES OR TALK ABOUT STATEWIDE
SOLUTIONS TO THESE PROBLEMS, AND BIG CHANGES TO THE WAY
WE DO LOCAL GOVERNMENT.>>EMERGENCY MANAGER IS
STILL THE BEST VEHICLE FOR A LOCAL COMMUNITY.
IT DOESN’T WORK IN A COUNTY LIKE WAYNE BECAUSE OF THE
DIFFUSE STRUCTURE OF AUTHORITY, BUT IN A PLACE
LIKE LINCOLN PARK, IT’S STILL THE BEST ANSWER FOR
NOW, BUT LONG TERM, THESE CITIES HAVE GOT TO DECIDE
WHETHER THEY’RE GOING TO BE JOB PROVIDERS AND BENEFIT
PROVIDERS OR SERVICE PROVIDERS, AND THEY’VE GOT
TO DO THEIR JOBS MORE EFFICIENTLY WITH THE
TAXPAYERS FIRST IN MIND.>>ALL THE CITIES WITH
EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT HAVE DONE THAT, AND MOST OF THEM
ARE NOT IN MUCH BETTER SHAPE NOW BECAUSE, AGAIN, THE
STRUCTURAL PROBLEMS. WE THINK OF THE CITIES THAT
HAVE GONE IN, COME OUT, AND GONE BACK IN, CITY PARK AND
HAMTRAMCK WHICH ARE BETTER STRUCTURED NOW BUT STILL
STRUGGLING TO BALANCE THE BOOK AND PROVIDE SERVICES.
IT’S A SYSTEMIC PROBLEM.>>PERHAPS WE NEED TO LOOK
AT MOROUN ITS OF GOVERNMENT. THERE ARE TOO MANY SMALL
COMMUNITIES WITH TOO MUCH OVERHEAD.
>>AND SERVICES. TURNING TO THE STATE OF
DETROIT’S BANKRUPTCY: A FEW THINGS THAT MAY MAKE IT MOVE
QUICKLY OR TACK ON YEARS. THE CITY IS EXPECTED TO FILE
ITS RESTRUCTURING PLAN NEXT WEEK, BUT A BIG HOLDUP IS A
DEAL FOR THE WATER DEPARTMENT.
THE NEWS OUT THIS WEEK, COMMISSIONERS FROM ALL THREE
COUNTIES MET TO TALK ABOUT THIS DEAL, AND IT’S
NOT MOVING. IT’S NOT MOVING RIGHT NOW.
>>I’M NOT SURE IT’S GOING TO MOVE.
THERE ARE A LOT OF –>>BUT HOW CAN IT NOT MOVE?
ISN’T THIS THE BIG LYNCHPIN TO THE ENTIRE
BANKRUPTCY PROCESS?>>BUT IF YOU’RE OAK LABD
AND MACOMB COUNTY, YOU’RE NOT THAT MOTIVATED TO SAY
WE’RE GOING TO STEP UP AND SOLVE THIS PROBLEM.
I TALKED TO BOB DADO, MARK HACKEL IN MACOMB COUNTY, I
DIDN’T GET A SENSE THAT EITHER ONE OF THEM WAS
PREPARED TO MAKE THIS DEAL. THEY’RE WORRIED ABOUT ALL
THE THINGS THEY DON’T KNOW. THEY HAVEN’T GOT THE
INFORMATION NECESSARY. THINK OF THIS AS A HUGE
MERGER AND ACQUISITION DEAL. THE DUE DILIGENCE HASN’T
BEEN DONE THAT WE NEED TO GET DONE TO SIGN THEIR
NAME ON IT. THEY DON’T KNOW WHAT THE
LEGACY COSTS ARE, WHAT THE NEEDS ARE.
THEY HAVE PROJECTIONS FROM 2-1/2 TO FIVE MILLION.
THAT’S A BIC DIFFERENCE. THEY DON’T KNOW WHO IS GOING
TO SPEND THE OUTSTANDING DEBTS, WHAT THE LABOR
CONTRACT SITUATION IS, AND THEY’RE BEING ASKED TO SIGN,
AND FROM THEIR POINT OF VIEW, KEVYN ORR IS TRYING TO
CREATE A REVENUE STREAM FOR THE CITY OF DETROIT OUT OF A
SYSTEM THAT IS BASICALLY BROKEN, UNPROFITABLE, AND
HAS REALLY NO BUSINESS GENERATING MONEY FOR ANYONE
UNTIL THOSE ISSUES ARE FIXED.
>>IS THIS A GAME OF CHICKEN?
CAN KEVYN ORR DO THIS WITHOUT THEM?
>>HE CAN. IT’S NOT THE IDEAL.
I THINK YOU WANT THE COUNTIES IN ON THIS DEAL,
THE SUBURBAN COUNTIES, BECAUSE THEY’RE — THE
WEIGHT OF THEIR GOOD CREDIT RATINGS AND THINGS LIKE THAT
WILL HELP YOU RESTRUCTURING THE DEBT IN THE SYSTEM, IF
IT’S JUST A SYSTEM OWNED BY WAYNE COUNTY AND DETROIT,
YOU HAVE OTHER ISSUES THAT ARE NOT GOING TO GO AWAY.
AT THE SAME TIME, THE COUNTIES HAVE TO REALLY
START LOOKING AT THIS FROM A VERY PRACTICAL STANDPOINT;
EVERYBODY DOES, IN FACT: WE DON’T PAY ENOUGH FOR WATER
IN THIS COMMUNITY, AND THAT’S WHY THE SYSTEM IS IN
THE SHAPE IT’S IN. IT’S GOT SOMETHING LIKE $3
BILLION WORTH OF BACKLOGGED MAINTENANCE AND
INFRASTRUCTURE THAT HAVE TO BE DONE.
THE GIANT MAIN BURSTS THAT WE’RE SEEING ALL OVER THE
METRO AREA RIGHT NOW ARE RELATED TO THAT.
THIS IS A BITTER PILL THAT EVERYONE IS GOING TO HAVE TO
SWALLOW AT SOME POINT. THE COSTS ARE OUT
OF CONTROL. THERE WERE A LOT OF MISTAKES
MADE IN THE MANAGEMENT OF THE WATER SYSTEM THAT ARE
RESPONSIBLE FOR THAT, BUT THE PRINCIPAL PROBLEM HAS
BEEN THAT WE HAVE NOT TAKEN CARE OF THIS.
>>THAT’S TRUE TO A POINT. I THINK YOU’RE RIGHT THAT WE
HAVEN’T PAID ENOUGH FOR WATER AND NEGLECTED THE
CAPITAL NEEDS OF THE SYSTEM, BUT THIS IS A SYSTEM THAT’S
BEEN OPERATING, ACCORDING TO THE INDEPENDENT STUDY, WITH
80% BLOAT IN THEIR PAYROLL. THAT IS OUTRAGEOUS.
AND THERE’S SOME –>>THEY’RE GETTING THAT
UNDER CONTROL.>>THERE IS SOME QUESTION
WHETHER THEY CAN EVEN GO TO THE CAPITAL MARKETS AND GET
DEBT RATED, AND THAT’S ONE OF THE THINGS THESE COUNTIES
WANT TO KNOW.>>BUT IT WILL BE HARDER TO
GO TO THE MARK TOTES GET RATED WITHOUT MACOMB
AND OAKLAND.>>BUT THEY’RE NOT SURE THEY
CAN DO IT EVEN SO, THERE IS THIS LIABILITY DRAGGING DOWN
THEIR BOND RATINGS FOR OTHER BORROWING AND OTHER DEBT.
THERE’S A LOT OF UNANSWERED QUESTIONS HERE.
YOU SAY THEY WON’T HAVE A CHOICE.
BROOKS WAS UP LAST NIGHT SAYING IF WE’RE GOING TO GET
DINGED FOR FIVE, SIX BILLION DOLLARS, I CAN BUILD
THAT FOR THAT.>>BUT IS THAT FEASIBLE?
WHAT HAPPENS TO THE BANKRUPTCY PROCESS?
HOW DELAYED IS IT FOR DETROIT IF THIS DEAL DOESN’T
GET DONE IN THE NEXT –>>WELL, SIX BILLION DOLLARS
OF THE $18 BILLION IN DEBT IS RELATED TO THE
WATER DEPARTMENT. IT’S A BIG PART OF
OUR LIABILITY. AND IF YOU CAN’T, YOU
KNOW — KEVYN ORR’S PLAN IS TO ESSENTIALLY SEVER THAT
FROM THE CITY, AND SAY THAT’S NO LONGER DETROIT,
THIS IS UNDER SOME INDEPENDENT AUTHORITY THAT
CAN DO THINGS THAT THE CITY CAN’T TO MAKE UP FOR THAT.
IT’S A HUGE PART OF HIS PLAN.
I DON’T THINK THAT –>>BUT IT’S NOT THE DEBT,
SPINNING OFF THE DEBT THAT’S A BIG PART OF HIS PLAN,
BECAUSE THAT DEBT’S COVERED BY REVENUE.
>>SORT OF.>>THE ISSUE HERE IS HE
WANTS TO GENERATE SOMETHING ON THE ORDER OF $40 MILLION
FOR THE CITY OFF THE SYSTEM, AND THERE IS A QUESTION OF
THESE SUBURBAN COMMUNITIES HAVE A LEGITIMATE QUESTION
WHETHER IT’S WORTH THAT.>>WELL, I THINK THAT’S A
PERFECTLY REASONABLE QUESTION.
>>THAT’S THE HOLDUP. HIS PLAN DEPENDS ON GETTING
THAT REVENUE OUT OF THAT SYSTEM, AND I’M NOT SURE
THERE’S REVENUE TO BE GOT.>>LET’S LOOK AT THE $350
MILLION THAT THE GOVERNOR SAYS WAS NOT A BAILOUT BUT
WOULD JUST HELP DEFRAY THE COST.
WE HAVEN’T HEARD ANYTHING OUT OF LANSING, AND
LAWMAKERS STOOD UP WITH THERE WITH HIM AND SAID WE
WANT TO LOOK AT THIS. WHAT ARE WE HEARING ABOUT
THEIR SUPPORT ON THAT? WHEN ARE THEY GOING TO
MOVE ON THAT? DOESN’T THAT HAVE TO BE
MOVED ON FOR THE BANKRUPTCY TO MOVE FORWARD AS WELL?
>>WELL, YOU KNOW T WAS IN THE BUDGET, SO NOW IT’S PART
OF THE BUDGET, AND YOU CAN BE SURE THAT THESE OUT-STATE
REPUBLICANS SAYING WE HAVE A FITCH REPORT THAT SAYS IF WE
DO THIS DEAL, IT MAY HURT OUR OWN CREDIT RATINGS, MAKE
IT HARDER FOR ALL OTHER MICHIGAN COMMUNITIES TO
BORROW, TO GO TO THE BOND MARKETS AND RAISE MONEY.
THERE IS A LITTLE WARINESS. I THINK THE GOVERNOR’S GOING
TO GET WHAT HE WANTS. BUT WHAT WE WILL HE HAVE TO
GIVE IN RETURN?>>I’M NOT SURE.
CERTAINLY THE REPUBLICANS IN LANSING RIGHT NOW WANT A
BETTER INCOME TAX RELIEF PACKAGE OUT OF THIS BUDGET.
MAYBE THAT’S SOMETHING HE CAN BE FLEXIBLE ON.
I THINK THAT’S BAD POLICY, BUT WE’RE NOT TALKING ABOUT
POLICY; WE’RE TALKING ABOUT POLITICS.
WHAT CAN HE GET THROUGH THE LEGISLATURE?
AGAIN, THE CONCERN HERE, MY BIG CONCERN, IS YOU’RE DOING
THIS PIECEMEAL AGAIN. YOU’RE GOING TO SOLVE THIS
PROBLEM IN DETROIT. YOU HAVE A 30 TO
50-BILLION-DOLLAR PROBLEM LIKE THIS AROUND THE STATE.
I THINK YOU’VE GOT TO START THINKING ABOUT THAT IN
COMPREHENSIVE TERMS RATHER THAN IS IT DETROIT OR IS IT
WAYNE COUNTY OR OLINCOLN PARK.
EVERYONE IS ALMOST IN THE SAME BOAT, PARTICULARLY WITH
THE HEALTH CARE DHOOFTS RETIREES ARE BRINGING TO THE
TABLE RIGHT NOW. SO I THINK — WHAT I WOULD
LOVE TO SEE THE LEGISLATORS DO IS PUSH BACK TO THE
GOVERNOR IN THAT WAY AND SAY, LISTEN, LET’S NOT JUST TALK
ABOUT DETROIT, LET’S NOT JUST TALK ABOUT WHAT WE’RE
GOING TO BAIL OUT THERE; LET’S TALK ABOUT THIS WHOLE
PROBLEM AND SOLVE IT ONE TIME INSTEAD OF COMING TO —
>>WELL, THAT TAKES — THAT REQUIRES SOME REALLY
HARD CHOICES.>>IT DOES.
>>REALLY HARD DECISIONS, AND WE’RE MORE LIMITED NOW
IN OUR ABILITY TO MAKE THOSE DECISIONS WITH THE HUGE
EXPANSION OF MEDICAID. THE GOVERNOR BILLED $122
MILLION INTO THIS BUDGET THIS YEAR TO DEAL WITH THAT,
AND IT WAS SMART, TO DEAL WITH UNEXPECTED COSTS OF THE
OBAMACARE EXPANSION. YOU CAN’T DO EVERYTHING.
>>BUT LET’S TALK ABOUT WHAT THE LEGISLATORS ARE
WRANGLING WITH RIGHT NOW, AND LOOKING AT THE TAX CUT.
A POLL WAS OUT IN THE FREE PRESS TODAY SAYING THAT IT’S
LOW ON PEOPLE’S LIST. THE FIRST WAS K-12, THEY
WANT MORE INFUSION OF CASH THERE, BUT THE SECOND
WAS ROADS. YOU CAN’T BLAME ANYONE WHO
HAS BEEN DRIVING ON ANY OF THESE ROADS, THAT’S WHERE
THEY WANT A LOT OF THAT SURPLUS TO GO FOR.
DO YOU THINK LAWMAKERS WILL LISTEN TO THEM?
YOU WOULD THINK THEY SHOULD, BUT THEY STILL SEEM TO BE
TRUMPETING THIS TAX CUT.>>THEY WANT TO SAY “THIS IS
WHAT I DID FOR YOU.” I AGREE.
AS LONG AS YOU HAVE ROADS IN THIS CONDITION, UNIVERSITIES
UNDERFUNDED, YOU DON’T HAVE A SURPLUS; YOU JUST HAVE
MONEY YOU HAVEN’T PUT IN THE RIGHT PRIORITY.
THESE ROADS ARE AWFUL, AND THE LAWMAKERS HAVE NO
COURAGE IN TERMS OF SAYING WE’VE GOT TO FIND A REVENUE
STREAM FOR THAT. I AGREE WITH STEVE: WE NEED
MORE MONEY.>>WRITE IT DOWN!
>>WE NEED TO SPEND OUR ROAD MONEY BETTER, BUT I THINK
WE’RE LAST PER CAPITA SPENDING FOR ROADS, AND THE
ROADS REFLECT THAT.>>DO YOU THINK THIS WINTER
WILL REFLECT A MIND SHIFT?>>IF YOU’RE THE GOVERNOR,
THERE IS NO BETTER ALLY YOU HAVE —
>>THAN THIS WINTER.>>THIS IS REMINDING PEOPLE
HOW LITTLE WE HAVE TAKEN CARE OF THESE ROADS.
THE SAD THING, THIS IS THE SAME CONVERSATION WE JUST
HAD ABOUT THE DETROIT WATER SYSTEM.
THIS IS A STATE AND SOUTHEAST MICHIGAN IN
PARTICULAR THAT HAS REALLY SOLD ITSELF SHORT IN TERMS
OF INVESTMENT. AND NOW THE BILLS ARE DUE.
AND YOU’VE GOT CARS UNDER FOUR FEET OF WATER IN
SOUTHWEST DETROIT BECAUSE MAINS ARE BURSTING,
GREENFIELD BETWEEN 8 AND 9 MILE IS ONE BIG POTHOLE,
THE WHOLE THING. AND YOU’RE GOING TO SEE THAT
OPEN UP ALL OVER THIS COMMUNITY BECAUSE WE
DON’T PAY ENOUGH.>>FOR DECADES.
AND I SPOKE RECENTLY, NOT LONG AGO, TO A GROUP IN
MACOMB COUNTY. I SAID HOW MANY OF YOU THINK
WE NEED TO SPEND MORE ON ROADS?
EVERY HAND WENT UP. WHO WOULD SUPPORT A
HIGHER GAS TAX?>>ANY HANDS?
>>REGISTRATION FEES? THE CONCEPT IS THERE THAT WE
NEED TO SPEND MORE BUT –>>IT’S HARD FOR PEOPLE
TO SPEND MORE. TO SHIFT GEARS, LET’S LOOK
AT THE U.S. SENATE RACE. IT’S STARTING TO GET THE
WHEELS ROLLING BETWEEN GARY PETEERS AND TERRI LYNN LAND.
SHE WAS GIVEN AN EDGE THERE, BUT IT’S SHAPING UP TO BE
A CLOSE RACE.>>IN THE LAST FIVE POLLS,
THERE HAVE BEEN PARTISAN POLLS ON BOTH SIDES,
INCLUDING — THEY ALL SAY IT’S EVEN.
IN EVERY POLL, SHE HAS BEEN UP BY TWO OR THREE POINTS.
RIGHT NOW I THINK THE POLLS ARE REFLECTING THE PARTISAN
ALIGNMENT OF THE STATE BUT ALSO HER STRONGER NAME
RECOGNITION FROM HAVING BEEN SECRETARY OF STATE.
SHE’S GOT GOING FROM HER NOW, I THINK, THE TWO KEY
COMMODITIES IN POLITICS: MONEY.
SHE IS RAISING A TON OF MONEY.
AFP, AMERICANS FOR PROSPERITY, SPENT $2 MILLION,
SORT OF OFF THE BOOKS, AND THIS RACE IS DRAWING
ATTENTION, BECAUSE THE NATIONAL PARTY, THE
NATIONAL — AND THE PEOPLE WHO SUPPORT CONSERVATIVES
AND REPUBLICANS BELIEVE SHE’S GOT A SHOT AT WINNING
AND THIS COULD BE THE REPUBLICANS’ 51ST VOTE.
SHE STAYED EVEN WITH FUNDRAISING, EVEN IN
THE POLLS. I THINK THAT MEANS YOU’RE
GOING TO SEE JUST AN OUTRAGEOUS AMOUNT OF MONEY.
>>WHAT DOES GARY PETERS NEED TO DO, AND WHAT
KIND OF TONE?>>HE’S GOT TO START GETTING
HIS NAME OUT. HE DOESN’T HAVE TO WIN OUT
STATE; HE’S GOT TO WIN OAKLAND COUNTY.
AND PARTICULARLY IF YOU’RE A DEMOCRAT, IF YOU CAN WIN
OAKLAND COUNTY, YOU’RE GOING TO WIN A STATEWIDE RACE IN
MICHIGAN, BUT YOU CAN’T GET WIPED OUT IN GRAND
RAPIDS OR UP NORTH. HE’S GOT TO START REALLY
WORKING THAT END OF IT, AND EXP POSING HER WEAKNESSES.
TERRI LYNN LAND IS A VERY GOOD CANDIDATE IN A
LOT OF WAYS. IN SOME WAYS SHE’S GOOD FROM
A DISTANCE, AND WHEN YOU LOOK CLOSER, THERE IS A LOT
OF POLICY WEAKNESS, THE SOCIAL CONSERVATIVEISM, THAT
ARE OUT OF LINE WITH WHAT THE MAJORITY OF VOTERS IN
THE STATE TEND TO WANT. HE HAS TO POKE AT HER A
LITTLE BIT.>>WE SPENT $1.1 MILLION ON
KWAME KILPATRICK’S DEFENSE.>>IT’S THE CONSTITUTION.
>>SO WE PAID ABOUT — I WOULD LOVE TO SEE THE BILL
FOR THE PROSECUTION, HOW MUCH WE ACTUALLY SPENT,
TAXPAYERS, AND THE U.S. ATTORNEY’S OFFICE.
>>WE NEVER CALCULATE THAT AMOUNT, BUT THE AMOUNT OF
MONY KWAME KILPATRICK HAS COST THIS COMMUNITY, STATE,
AND FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, IT’S NOW INTO THE TENS OF
MILLIONS OF DOLLARS. ONE CORRUPT POLITICIAN, THE
DAMAGE THEY CAN DO.>>CAN WE FINALLY DECLARE
THIS SHOW A KWAME-FREE ZONE?>>START WRITING PEOPLE
LETTERS AND STUFF TO MAKE THE PAPERS.
>>ARE APPEALS ARE GOING TO COST.
>>HE’S STILL GOT QUITE A BIT TO GO.
>>ALL RIGHT. WELL, THANKS SO MUCH,
GENTLEMEN. WE’LL SEE YOU NEXT WEEK.
THAT DOES IT FOR MiWEEK. THANK YOU FOR JOINING US.
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