Duggan wants Detroit held harmless in the expanded Wayne Co. transportation

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Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan generally favors Wayne County Executive Warren Evans’ plans to expand public transportation nationwide, but he wants to make sure Detroiters don’t see a tax increase as a result of the change.

“As long as there’s an arrangement where Detroit’s money comes back to run bus service in Detroit, I’m fine with that,” Duggan told The Detroit News.

Duggan was actually instrumental in creating the state law that currently allows local municipalities to opt out of the regional public transportation system, Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation, or SMART, when he managed the bus system in the 1990s, said he.

“It should never have happened. If I could go back in time, I would have just told Detroit, ‘We’ll give you back the money you raised in taxes for DDOT,’ and left it intact,” Duggan said.

“But this opt-out is crazy. You can’t have a regional transportation plan with a chessboard of who’s in and who’s out.”

More: Wayne County wants to ban SMART opt-out for cities through legislation; enemies plan a battle

Evans is pushing for possible legislation that would eliminate the opt-out choice for local communities, which voters have already approved separately in Macomb and Oakland counties’ SMART millages.

Seventeen communities in Wayne County have opted out of SMART, meaning buses generally don’t serve these communities because residents don’t pay property taxes to fund public transportation there. The only exception is Detroit, where property owners do not pay the $0.994 million fee for SMART bus service, but the city is served by buses that run along major corridors in Detroit and the suburbs.

The Evans administration hopes to have the legislation approved by the Democratic-controlled state legislature by the end of the year. Wayne County commissioners would then decide whether to put the idea up for a vote in 2026, when the current four-year SMART millage expires.

Duggan essentially wants to end all opt-outs in Wayne County, except Detroit, because the city already has its own Department of Transportation funded by existing property taxes.

When asked if he could foresee a scenario in which Detroit gets out of the transit sector and hands over bus operations to a regional authority, Duggan dismissed the idea.

“You’re talking about the roach swallowing the whale,” Duggan said. “Detroit is three times the size of SMART.”

The AG opinion expands the explanations

A Wednesday advice from Attorney General Dana Nessel will mean Michigan officeholders will have to report more details to the public about their annual personal financial disclosures.

Nessel found that under new state policy and a constitutional amendment approved by voters in 2022, the secretary of state’s office could require lawmakers to provide identifying information about their sources of unearned income and more details about the benefits they receive from lobbyists receive, such as the date of their unearned income. the expenses and the name of the lobbyist who financed them.

In addition, Nessel said the policy would require lawmakers to report gifts and travel payments they receive from lobbyists “regardless of whether the lobbyist or lobbyist agent actually reported the expenditures.” That means that to comply, lawmakers will likely have to track the benefits they receive and cannot simply copy lobbyists’ disclosures.

“If a lobbyist or lobbyist fails to report gifts or payments that are required to be reported, whether inadvertently or otherwise, an official should not be excused from making his or her own disclosure,” Nessel found.

Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson asked Nessel for advice on the amount of information lawmakers should provide after voters approved a constitutional amendment to mandate the annual disclosures and the Legislature passed bills to enact the proposal.

Lawmakers completed their first round of disclosures in April. A Detroit News investigation found that the requirements forced some of the 146 lawmakers serving at the start of the year to turn over little information to the public, and revealed many apparent discrepancies in the submissions.

Some lawmakers expressed frustration with Nessel’s opinion Thursday and Friday, claiming she had gone further in requiring the release of information than they intended in their legislation.

“It bothers me,” he said Senator Ed McBroomR-Vulcan.

McBroom said that while he did not disagree with the idea of ​​releasing more information, he did not believe the laws themselves required lawmakers to specify the addresses of their investment sources or to track all food purchases from which they benefit.

NRSC will come knocking for Rogers

The National Republican Senatorial Committee said Friday it is spending a seven-figure sum on a field program in Michigan to boost the campaign of former U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers from Brighton.

The NRSC said the investment will ensure Rogers’ campaign has the infrastructure on the ground to turn out voters later this year. The move is relatively unusual ahead of the Republican Party’s Aug. 6 primary, in which Rogers faces a businessman Sandy Pensler of Grosse Pointe Park, former U.S. Representative Justin Amash of Cascade Township and physician Sherry O’Donnell.

Because the money is for door-knocking purposes only, the NRSC says it is not considered a communication coordinated with a federal campaign. This type of coordinated messaging places requirements on the committee to obtain approval from the national or state party before becoming involved in a contest before the Republican Party’s primaries.

“The Michigan Senate race is one of our top pick-up opportunities in 2024,” said NRSC spokeswoman Maggie Abboud.. “This investment is a direct reflection of our confidence in Mike Rogers’ ability to flip this seat in November.”

On the Democratic side of the race U.S. Rep. Elissa Slotkin of Holly received the support of the Council of Baptist Pastors of Detroit and Vicinity, which represents more than 100 African American churches in the Detroit area.

“Detroit demands effective representation in Washington, and given Elissa Slotkin’s commitment to the city over the past year, we know she is the right leader we need at this time,” the spokesperson said. Rev. Richard White IIIchairman of the council, in a statement.

The actor Hill Harper of Detroit, who is also running for the Democratic nomination, was endorsed by the Michigan Democratic Party’s Progressive Caucus.

23 devices searched in Chatfield probe

Michigan prosecutors revealed during a court conference Thursday that they had obtained information from “23 different devices” through search warrants as part of their investigation into the former Michigan House Speaker Lee ChatfieldR-Delivery.

Nessel, the Democratic attorney general, announced criminal charges against Lee Chatfield and his wife. Stephanie Chatfieldon April 16, accusing them of misusing political and nonprofit funds they raised for personal expenses.

The Chatfields pleaded no guilty.

On Thursday, they appeared via video feed for a court conference in Ingham County District Court, where prosecutors laid out their plans to get information from the state investigation to attorneys. The 23 different devices, possibly computers and phones, were seized via search warrants William Rollstinan assistant attorney general.

Also on Thursday Judge Molly Hennessey Greenwalt said that another conference would take place on August 1 and that the Chatfields’ preliminary examinations would begin on September 5.

13th Democrats endorse Thanedar

The 13th Congressional District Democratic Party has endorsed re-election US Representative Shri ThanedarD-Detroit, which faces two primary challengers this summer.

In a statement released Thursday, Wayne County Commissioner Jonathan C. Kinloch13th District Party Chairman, cited Thanedar’s work during his first two years in the House of Representatives, including securing $15 million for community projects across the district and responding to 33,000 emails.

“Thanedar’s commitment to serving his constituents, maintaining open lines of communication and making a real difference in the district has earned him the party’s full support for a second term,” Kinloch said.

Thanedar, a former state lawmaker, is being challenged by an attorney in the Democratic primary Shakira Hawkins and member of the Detroit City Council Mary Waters.

More: Detroit Congressman Shri Thanedar spends heavily on TV ads and billboards using taxpayer dollars

Waters was endorsed by Michigan’s black mayors last week.

“As Black mayors, we understand the critical importance of strong, effective representation in Congress. Mary Waters has demonstrated time and again her ability to fight for the needs of our communities,” Benton Harbor said. Mayor Marcus Mohammedpresident of the Black Mayors of Michigan.

“Her vision, experience and dedication make her the right choice for the 13th Congressional District. We need leaders like Mary who will advocate for policies that advance justice, equality and opportunity for all.”

Huizenga in Normandy

U.S. Representative Bill HuizengaR-Holland was in Normandy last week for the commemoration of the 80th anniversary of D-Day in France and said it was “extremely humbling”.

“It’s just an hour to meet the veterans who were here. I think the youngest was about 97 or 98, and these guys are dwindling fast,” Huizenga said in an Instagram post as he stood on the sand where 150,000 American, British and Canadian troops stormed the beaches of Normandy on June 6, 1944.

“But I can tell you there are a few guys walking up the driveway and I’m pretty sure they’ll be there for the 85th anniversary, if not the 90th. They were very, very spry and just great to to see that Greatest Generation is still being celebrated.”

Huizenga, whose father served in Italy during World War II, said Saturday he visited the Suresnes American Cemetery outside Paris, where 1,559 Americans who died in World War I, as well as 24 unknown dead from World War II, are buried.

Tweet of the week

The Insider Report’s “Tweet of the Week,” which recognizes a social media post that was worthy of attention or possibly just a laugh, from the week before, goes to the Michigan State Capitol.

Tour, Education and Information Service’s X account for the Michigan Capitol posted an image of the building’s dome on Wednesday, celebrating the removal of scaffolding after nearly a year of restoration work.

Now visitors can once again lie on the building’s glass flood and look up at the dome.

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