Tag Archive for Public Pensions

Who Rules Michigan?

The Administrative State or the People?

The titanic political struggle unfolding in Washington is sucking the oxygen out of Michigan politics, but is analogous to the central political struggle which has been playing out here in Michigan for 48 years. Political media breathlessly report on a struggle between liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans. This struggle is not between Democrats and Republicans, liberals and conservatives, nor RINOs and true believers. The Democrats, liberals, and RINOs are completely discredited in Michigan, as they are across most of the United States. All that remains of them is jammed into the Hillary archipelago.

The present political struggle is between the people and the administrative state. Call it bureaucracy, deep state, or administrative state: they are unelected government employees, their agents in the media, and the select beneficiaries of government largess. Their opponents in this struggle are the majority of Americans and Michiganders who pay the price for the administrative state; a now seething mass whose ascendancy was a rude surprise to the administrative state.

The outcome of the struggle in Washington is yet to be determined, but in Michigan the administrative state is clearly winning despite its total responsibility for the Flint water fiasco. The administrative state owns Governor Snyder body and soul. The administrative state will stop at nothing to manipulate the Michigan Legislature when the chips are down. Refractory (but innocent) legislators are expelled before legal process while cooperative (but guilty) legislators sit unfettered until legal process is completed.

How else can you explain the PA 177 of 2015 road tax package, indistinguishable from the soundly trounced Proposal 2015-01? Or the bogus Detroit bankruptcy which somehow neglected a $ 491 million financial hole which will haunt the city with a vengeance in 2024? Half the city’s annual budget. Or the refusal of Michigan government units at all levels to even consider tax reductions due to the simmering public employee pension catastrophe? Those pensions enjoyed by members of the administrative state are but a distant memory to the Michiganders who pay them.  Indeed, all of Michigan’s units of government are jacking up fees to get around Headlee Amendment taxation limits.

You Betcha! (19)Nuh Uh.(1)

Yet Another Government Triumph in Michigan

Rewarding Incompetence and Corruption With Your Tax Dollars

Snyder Duggan Orr Image aMayor Mike Duggan startled Michigan yesterday by disclosing that Detroit found the actuarial accrued liability (AAL) in their pension plans to be $ 491 million higher than that calculated in their U.S. Bankruptcy Court Plan of Adjustment. The very expensive Detroit bankruptcy consultants used an outdated version of the IRS Static Mortality Table when calculating Detroit’s future pension payments. Detroit’s unfunded actuarial accrued liability (UAAL) was not the $ 731 million stated in the Plan of Adjustment, rather it was $ 1.222 billion. Big money in a city whose total governmental revenues were $ 1.415 billion in FY 2014. Mayor Duggan blames erstwhile Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr for this little oversight, but others were also responsible.

GLWA Detroit Seal ImageNo word yet from the Great Lakes Water Authority whether all those Detroit Water & Sewerage Department employees they absorbed from the City of Detroit have the same AAL calculation error in their pension funding schedules. You can bet they did, and the suburban geniuses politicians who spent a year doing due diligence also missed it. The DW&SD pension funding schedules were determined by the same very expensive bunglers who wrote the Detroit Plan of Adjustment.

You Betcha! (16)Nuh Uh.(0)