Mar 052014

Curt Guyette, Investigative Reporter, ACLU of Michigan, February 14, 2014

There’s an old adage that alludes to the futility of shutting barn doors once the horses have fled.  With that bit of folk wisdom in mind, it’s worth pointing out that there is a certain runaway horse aspect to the state of Michigan’s emergency manager law and the various legal actions that are trying to shut it down.

Nearly a year ago, when PA 436 – formally titled the Local Financial Stability and Choice Act – was about to take effect, a noteworthy team of attorneys representing people in four of the cities under emergency management, led by lawyers from the nonprofit Sugar Law Centerfiled suit in federal court seeking to have the law declared unconstitutional on a variety of grounds, including the suspension of the powers held by duly elected officials.
(Full disclosure: The ACLU of Michigan has filed a friend of the court brief arguing that the suspension of political rights occurring in cities under emergency management is illegal under international law.)
Soon after the Sugar Law Center case was initiated, a similar lawsuit was filed by the NAACP on behalf of a group of African-American Detroit residents. Both cases were assigned to U.S. District Court Judge George Caram Steeh. Before much headway could be made in those actions, however, the city launched bankruptcy proceedings.
This is where things get particularly twisted.
 March 5, 2014  Posted by at 4:55 am Uncategorized Tagged with: , ,

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