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Gov. Snyder speaks out on ballot initiatives with new videos and blog

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

LANSING, Mich. ? Gov. Rick Snyder today released a series of YouTube videos and a blog post discussing the six pending ballot proposals that citizens will decide on during the Nov. 6 general election.

"I respect the initiative process as a fundamental democratic right, but the proposed constitutional amendments in November's election have potentially dangerous long-term consequences for Michigan," Snyder said. "Enshrining these seriously flawed proposals within our constitution would roll back positive reforms that are helping reinvent our state, and I encourage citizens to view them with skepticism."

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder

Snyder also praised the state's emergency manager law, which faces repeal under Proposal 1, citing the great progress it has already made in turning around financially struggling cities and school districts.

"Public Act 4 helps financially struggling cities and school districts to get back on track," Snyder said. "If the emergency manager law were to go away, debt in those local units of government would continue to pile up, bills would go unpaid, paychecks may not be sent, lights could be turned off, police and fire protection might not be provided, and students would be at risk of not having a school to attend. Michigan needs this law because it helps those communities to efficiently and effectively overcome financial problems and avoid painful long-term solutions, and that is good for all Michiganders."

There are six proposals on the November 6 ballot.

  • Proposal 1 will decide whether or not to keep Public Act 4 - the emergency manger law, which was passed by the Legislature and signed by Gov. Snyder to help financially struggling cities and schools efficiently and effectively get back on a solid financial footing.
  • Proposal 2 would put in the constitution the right to organize and bargain collectively through labor unions, eliminating hundreds of existing labor laws in the process. While benefitting only three percent of Michiganders if approved, it would roll back important reforms that help get control of deficits and out-of-control spending and that make sure schools can keep functioning, and that fire and police departments can keep protecting us.
  • Proposal 3 would force Michigan to have 25 percent of its electricity come from renewable energy sources by 2025, despite the state already having an unmet goal of generating 10 percent of electricity from renewable sources by 2015. It would cost billions to implement, raise electric bills and make Michigan businesses less competitive.
  • Proposal 4 would undo a law signed by Gov. Snyder and force Michigan's 60,000 home health care aides to join a labor union. Those workers would be forced to have union dues withheld on top of the $30 million that was already taken previously. Improving health care in Michigan is important but this is not the right way to improve health care and will be bad medicine for the people of Michigan.
  • Proposal 5 would require that any future increases of the tax rate or tax base be approved by either a two-thirds majority of the legislature or a statewide vote. The two-thirds amendment would be detrimental and could stand in the way of reforms that would help us reinvent Michigan. It would give special interests more power and influence and make it more difficult to fund schools, fix our roads, or make sure that our law enforcement officers have the tools they need to protect us. It would also negatively impact bond ratings agencies, which could raise Michigan's interest costs and make the state look less attractive to job creators.
  • Proposal 6 would force a statewide vote for any bridge or tunnel project already under construction, not just the New International Trade Crossing, or any built thereafter. This proposal is really about protecting one billionaire and his special interest monopoly to the detriment of the rest of us, and the costs would be immense. We need the new bridge to Canada -- and a modern infrastructure -- if we want to reinvent Michigan and bring more and better jobs to our state.