Michigan Gubernatorial candidate Pat Colbeck was interviewed earlier this year on a number of issues.
A couple of choice quotes:
Essentially the state has deemed it upon itself to play venture capitalist with taxpayer money to the tune of about a billion dollars. It’s about halfway split between MEDC and Michigan Strategic Fund. … I propose broad-base tax incentives that honor Article I, Section I of the Michigan Constitution, which means that our policies are meant for the equal benefit of all of our citizens.
Right now, with these venture capitalist approach to economic development, like the ones you mentioned, the only people that get the deals are the ones with the ears of the power brokers up in Lansing, … it’s turned into more of an “old friends and family discount” than something that benefits all the citizens of Michigan. It’s something that I’m vehemently opposed to.
Businesses thrive when you lower the total cost of doing business. One of the major costs for businesses is the cost of government, and we can get into some of the other costs here down the road here, but health care is another one and energy is another one, and if you can lower all three of those costs, you actually create an economic development incentive package that’s not picking winners and losers; that applies to everybody equally.
When folks ask if it is possible for someone to represent ‘everyone.’ I say this last part is how its done.
Only SANCTIONED thievery is allowed in Michigan's cronyism environment.
It wasn’t just Granholm.
Rick Snyder got the ball rolling back not too long after Jennifer Granholm was blushing behind a privacy screen on the dating game, but well before she became our state’s executive Monte Hall.
Rick Snyder was the first CEO of the MEDC, and don’t let this fact escape anyone.
The MEDC has given BILLIONS of dollars to ‘winners’ since its inception in the 90s. Granholm was certainly more embarrassed however, to find out that it was the MEDC under her watch which gave $9 million to a guy running an international corporation out of a trailer in flint. He justgot out of prison.
That guy didn’t really have a business, and he went to jail. He didn’t create the jobs and suffered penalties for fraud.
Lots of stuff to discuss. Hope you all have the patience and time to digest it all.
Interesting perspective on Proposed Senate Bill 97 in your forward. My analysis is it is typical “fear mongering”. See discussion below.
Enclosed for your convenience is a copy of House Fiscal Legislative Analysis pertaining to Senate Bill 97. Permit me to comment on the Bill and ancillary issues pertaining to Public Private Partnerships (PPP’s) and infrastructure investment.
Senate Bill 97
The Bill authorizes the State and its various agencies to participate in Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) as a means to acquire private investment and management participation in state infrastructure projects. The objective of PPP’s is to facilitate private investment in infrastructure upgrades and repairs as a substitute for using taxation and state financed bonds as the sole remedy to pay for infrastructure needs. For example: The legislature raised the state taxes on fuels to pay for highway maintenance, construction and repairs, or alternatively, it could issue bonds secured by the State to be repaid with revenue either from the project (AKA TOLLS or USER FEES,) or increase taxes on the proletariat! Gas taxes or sales taxes.
As the Analysis confirms many states (other than Michigan) have now passed legislation authorizing their respective state agencies to enter into PPP’s as a basis to fund various transportation and other infrastructure needs (water and sewage). In the past I have referenced these projects as an alternative means to fund transportation and infrastructure needs in various letters to the media and others with copies to our relevant representatives.These copies are numbered and itemized below to refresh your memories. Several of the letters contain similar allegations and claims. My apologies for any redundancy. It is apparent the letters were of little interest to the recipients. So be it! It hasn’t been the first time. But, I digress. Mea Culpa!
Orwellian titles alone should give pause to voters given the 'pitch.'
Traverse City has apparently honored the wishes of the voters last night.
Good. They did the ‘right thing’ by allowing a requested exemption of the local library district from their TIF2 district renewal.
Some of you may be aware that the Traverse Area District Library received a solid 75.5% renewal vote for the millage last August. Some of you might also be aware what type of management and board makes up the library. Suffice it to say, the operation operation has in the past 6 years has found efficiency, improved technological services, and better staff competence and ability.
The district as a whole is an outstanding model of how government operations should run. We have addressed the pension gorilla successfully, stopped any growth (for-the-sake-of-growth) plans, and lowered the cost per taxable dollar. Technological services are so advanced, that the library has literally been able to market out some of its advances to neighboring library systems, providing them with value added (and lower cost) services and recovering taxpayer ‘investment’ at the same time.
We have done our part, but still have expenses, and every dollar matters in crafting the best possible response to voter intent.
And some of those who did not vote yes in the last millage made it clear why they did not support the millage. It wasn’t because they had misgivings about tax dollars being used to promote community literacy, but rather as an objection to the way in which that singular philanthropy doubles as a sieve to water ‘economic development’ efforts they have zero interest in supporting.
But with big government comes the sugar for the ants. For all the tax dollars we donate for the elected class to spend, there are a number of said class who believe they are smarter than free markets.
But certainly, the MEDC provides a lot of high paying jobs for otherwise failed business leaders and political partisans. No way in hell will it willingly surrender the family secrets and threaten the taxpayer goldmine. Indeed, no dog and pony show of ‘allowing’ bids for outside agencies to measure it’s (the MEDC’s) effectiveness will ever meet the threshold of honest brokering.
Anyone paying attention to what has been going on in Lansing for the past decade or so may be thinking the same thing: Our State government is out of control…and totally unaccountable to the people they are supposed to represent…
After Jennifer Granholm promised to “blow us away”, she did…laying the foundation for government cronyism by establishing the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, basically a slush fund which the government uses to pay back friends and donors with State contracts…The absolute best example of this would be the new Senate building, sold by a former MEDC Commissioner to the State for three times its appraised value…
Now comes Senate Bill 97, designed to expand this practice right down to the Township level…This bill (http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2017-2018/billintroduced/Senate/pdf/2017-SIB-0097.pdf) authorizes any government authority to designate taxing authority to any private business or group that develops infrastructure for health care, transportation, or ‘other’ development purposes…It also includes the use and enforcement of ‘eminent domain’…Think about that for a minute…
“But how is this legal plunder to be identified? Quite simply. See if the law takes from some persons what belongs to them,and gives it to other persons to whom it does not belong. See if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime.
Then abolish this law without delay, for it is not only an evil itself, but also it is a fertile source for further evils because it invites reprisals. If such a law—which may be an isolated case—is not abolished immediately, it will spread, multiply, and develop into a system.”
Cronyism alive and well in Lansing with renewable energy mandate 'lighting' it up.
The Michigan Chamber of Commerce and the two energy oligopolists in Michigan, through their lobbyists are attempting to railroad through a lame duck Michigan legislature Senate Bill 437. The bill would line the pockets of the energy oligopolists with subsidies and alleged necessary rate increases. The “climate change” advocates are being bribed to support the legislation because the legislation includes the production of more renewable energy in Michigan via windmills, etc. pursuant to Granholm’s 2008 Renewable Energy Mandate.
The following quote is from the linked article that substantiates the claim that in view of the 2016 Presidential Election results the legislature should stand fast and not support this wind fall profit package to the energy oligopolists and climate change advocates.
QUOTE: “The election of Donald Trump as the next president of the United States and the GOP maintaining control of the U.S. House and Senate means the key reason for pushing forward with Senate Bill 437, a bill that will revise utility regulations in Michigan, has effectively gone away.” http://www.michigancapitolconfidential.com/22976
A Few Details Michigan's Legislators Might Want to Consider
Michigan’s nitwit media have been gushing over the announcement last Thursday that Switch, LLC will purchase the erstwhile Steelcase Pyramid southwest of Grand Rapids and convert the site into one of their state-of-the-art SuperNAP cloud computing data centers. The ‘information economy’ has been touted as Michigan’s future by no less than Michael Dell. He was in Detroit to address the Economic Club after his company purchased EMC Corporation, another major data center operator with three facilities in Michigan, in a blow out $ 67 billion buyout. Switch SuperNAP promoters, notably The Right Place, Incorporated, are touting 1,000 new jobs in Gaines Township, but this should be regarded wth the same skepticism as any other MEDC clone employment prediction. No one has said anything about financing, but there is good reason to believe that Michigan will be asked to ‘participate’ here as well.
Steelcase vacated their distinctive Corporate Development Center in 2012 and sold it to to Norman Properties in May. Norman Properties, in turn, has agreed to sell this property to Switch LLC, pending the approval of State tax breaks. Those tax breaks have been introduced in the Michigan House by Representatives VerHeulin, Yonker, and Schor. Identical tax break legislation has been introduced in the Senate by Senators Hildenbrand, Schuitmaker, and MacGregor. These legislators are targeting quick passage in the legislative session which convenes after their Thanksgiving break. They might want to consider a few details before they lunge further forward.
This being RightMI, you might think this post is about those tax breaks. You would be wrong. There is actually a critical flaw in this project which will injure Consumer’s Energy electricity customers all across West Michigan. A couple of other issues exist as well, but they pale in comparison to the electricity consumption of this project. Those tax breaks are a lost cause in American politics today – not even worth protesting.
Cindy Gamrat is not giving up on setting the record straight in a recent messaging effort.
In my opinion she is rightfully standing firm and remains the best choice for voters in tomorrow’s special election. A strange mission by house leadership, and the agenda that is in play to control the 80th district seat and its votes is simply bad for Michigan. Our Lansing politicos have indeed gone to the dark side (timely Star Wars reference) after pretending a change to be made in the way things are done in the capitol.
The problem is that there is a lot of money to be made for SOME folks as the Michigan legislature passes more and higher taxes upon the serfs of the state. As we’ve seen, no majority of GOP in our houses can guarantee responsible management of what we have already surrendered, as long as the special lobbying interests push higher taxes to pad their road building bank accounts.