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    Who are the NERD fund donors Mr Snyder?

    Raise the curtain.

    Putting The Screws To The Taxpayers

    By Kevin Rex Heine, Section News
    Posted on Sat Jun 16, 2012 at 03:46:42 PM EST
    Tags: Michigan's 11th Congressional District, Kerry Bentivolio, Nancy Cassis, disingenuous hypocrisy, memory holes, Michigan Banana Republican Party, public record, 11th District Republican Star Chamber, L. Brooks Patterson, Tom Stroup, Oakland County, Wayne County, write-in campaign, Michigan Tea Party Patriot Network (all tags)

    Just so that we can continue to show Nancy Cassis a little attention here on RightMichigan, let me draw your attention to a little scheme to put taxpayers on the hook for boneheaded decisions made by their local governments, specifically with regard to labor agreements.

    KG referenced 2006-SB-1360 very briefly a few days ago, but I'd like to discuss this a tad more.

    The Headlee Amendment to the Michigan Constitution added several provisions to Article 9 (Finance and Taxation).  We'll specifically reference Sections 25 and 31.

    Section 25:

    Property taxes and other local taxes and state taxation and spending may not be increased above the limitations specified herein without direct voter approval.  The state is prohibited from requiring any new or expanded activities by local governments without full state financing, from reducing the proportion of state spending in the form of aid to local governments, or from shifting the tax burden to local government.  A provision for emergency conditions is established and the repayment of voter approved bonded indebtedness is guaranteed.  Implementation of this section is specified in Sections 26 through 34, inclusive, of this Article.

    Section 31:

    Units of Local Government are hereby prohibited from levying any tax not authorized by law or charter when this section is ratified or from increasing the rate of an existing tax above that rate authorized by law or charter when this section is ratified, without the approval of a majority of the qualified electors of that unit of Local Government voting thereon.  If the definition of the base of an existing tax is broadened, the maximum authorized rate of taxation on the new base in each unit of Local Government shall be reduced to yield the same estimated gross revenue as on the prior base.  If the assessed valuation of property as finally equalized, excluding the value of new construction and improvements, increases by a larger percentage than the increase in the General Price Level from the previous year, the maximum authorized rate applied thereto in each unit of Local Government shall be reduced to yield the same gross revenue from existing property, adjusted for changes in the General Price Level, as could have been collected at the existing authorized rate on the prior assessed value.

    The limitations of this section shall not apply to taxes imposed for the payment of principal and interest on bonds or other evidence of indebtedness or for the payment of assessments on contract obligations in anticipation of which bonds are issued which were authorized prior to the effective date of this amendment.

    It seems pretty straightforward, no increase of local taxes without a vote of the local people.  Evidently, Nancy Clueless didn't get the memo.  I say this because the Revised Municipal Finance Act was, according to Michigan Votes:

    Introduced by Sen. Nancy Cassis (R) on July 26, 2006, to allow a local government to borrow money to establish a fund to pay the unfunded liabilities created by employee contracts that promise government workers lifetime health care benefits after they stop working.  A vote of the people would not be required to authorize the new debt, but it would be subject to a referendum if a certain number of voters signed petitions.  The local government would have to show that the borrowed money plus future "required annual contributions" (presumably employee contributions but this is not specified) would be sufficient to cover the unfunded health care liabilities.  The new debt would be in the form of bonds backed by the full faith and credit of the local government.  The presumption of the local governments that do this is that their fund managers could invest the borrowed money and earn more than the interest payments.  Oakland County just announced a plan borrow $500 million to do this, and other local governments are investigating it.

    According to Mary McMaster (one of the Friends of Kerry Bentivolio who's been doing some digging), the point of this bill was to cover unfunded creme-de-la-creme health care coverage for public employees through the means of bonds.  If the bonds failed to produce, then the burden would have fallen on the backs of private property owners through special assessments and ad-valorem taxes . . . without a vote of the people.  In other words, a crystal-clear attempt to back-door the limitations of the Headlee Tax Limitation Amendment.  Apparently, the outcry of the people who took the time to read the bill thoroughly (and realize what was really going on) was loud enough that the bill was routed to committee, and allowed to quietly die during the lame-duck session.

    Nancy Cassis, welcome to the real world of Inconvenient Truth.  You allowed Patterson, Stroup, et al to advance you as the "less extreme" alternative to the guy who earned his place on the ballot by playing by the rules.  For some goofy reason you and your handlers seem to believe that a whisper campaign will successfully advance your write-in efforts, and that somehow your record is going to stay out of public view long enough to make that happen.

    But things are different these days.

    < And It Has Been Mentioned | We Have Work To Do >

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    good post. (none / 0) (#1)
    by josmatyb on Sat Jun 16, 2012 at 09:30:28 PM EST
    I know that  without the approval of a majority of the qualified electors of that unit of Local Government voting thereon.  If the definition of the base of an existing tax is broadened, the maximum authorized rate of taxation on the new base in each unit of Local Government shall be reduced to yield the same estimated gross revenue as on the prior base.

    Excellent Post (none / 0) (#2)
    by grannynanny on Sun Jun 17, 2012 at 04:52:40 PM EST
    I am so disgusted with the establishment GOP.  I hope we can rid ourselves of most of them this time around - or at least enough of them so that they straighten up and fly right.

    "Hi Brooks, yes this is Ruth..." (none / 0) (#3)
    by Corinthian Scales on Mon Jun 18, 2012 at 11:57:03 AM EST
    Just curious how long before we all read about former Oakland County Clerk, Ruth Johnson, who just coincidentally lifts the Secretary of State issued ballot sticker ban for Brooksies pal Nancy.

    Cassis said she and her campaign will be checking with the Secretary of State's office whether voters can use stickers on the ballot.

    Yup.  The establishment already working that angle against the only Republican that got his 1,000 legal petition signatures to be on the ballot.

    If Ruth changes the ban position in place, her ass needs to face a primary challenger too.

    Do you know if... (none / 0) (#8)
    by KG One on Mon Jun 18, 2012 at 08:56:30 PM EST
    ...Mary McMaster saw my last post on her record?

    It's a good source to use against her pathetically sorry voting record (and yes, I'm doing more digging on my end).

    Just curious...

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