Friday, December 14, 2007


12/14/07 By Terry Bankert
Posted first to Flint Talk

I think Genesee County and all of its communities must seriously debate the reorganizations of its basic services.

But we must differ from simplistic answers. I am not arguing for county executive.

There are many ways to deliver basic service like Fire protection.

Fire protection has many components that may avail them selves to being manipulated separately, unbundling.

For instance; Equipment purchased could be coordinated through a central purchasing department such as Genesee County Purchasing or the City of Flint purchasing.

Fire inspection work can be centralized to allowed the most professional to be available to all jurisdictions.

1.Health benefits could be centralized to get a better price.

2.There could be a central dispatch system.

3.There are many negative and positive spill overs caused by our current system. I support partial regionalization of this system.

I think fire service delivery differs significantly from a city setting to a rural system. In our reconstruction of fire service delivery this should be recognized.

Commissioner Curtis and others are providing a valuable service in the way they are raising this issue.

I attended the Meeting of the Flint Board of Education that rose Linda Thompson to the position of Superintendent. She received all but the support of Mr. Hatter who did pledge to work with her. I questioned whether or not Bashier should have abstained, but that’s his call.

Superintendent of Flint Schools Linda Thompson has the perfect temperment to face the fire storm brewing on the horizon as Flint Schools are closed.

Sherif Robert Pickell’s fundraiser was standing room only with barley enough space to park your car. He is an excellent sheriff and master politician.

Where will the dynamics of urban technological revolution take Flint? See[1]

As out cities evolve we sustain paradigm shifts in how we analyze city dynamics. V.Gordon Child In his article The Urban Revolution talks of the overlapping evolution of different eras. His basic proposition is that cities provide a social surplus to allow specialized activity and citizens are there for economic and physical safety. This sounds familiar.

We hear this in our political drum beat from our political leaders to provide increased police protection and jobs.

This drum beat is not new it is the basis of modern urban civilization. We no longer have walled fortified cities protecting us from foreign invaders. Required now is adequate police protection to protect us from ourselves. That is to protect city dweller from other city dwellers. Police protection and enforcement of the rules of law are of the highest importance.

Second is economic security. Easy access to “out of city” jobs and enticement and retention of small, medium and large business in Flint is the second highest importance. The job creation paradigm must include quality education for our citizens.

This is necessary for Flint to complete for jobs and enticement for business to locate here where a specialized work force will demand quality education for their children. Flint should prepare itself for change. We have a unique opportunity to change our mix of business activities in Flint combined with changes in our physical landscape.

The Flint Board of Education is tasked with providing a quality education for our residents.

The Future of Flint is the combined influence of the Flint municipal corporation and school system. Both bodies, Flint Board of Education and City of Flint Municipal Corporation, have the same general mission ,to improve the quality of life in Flint.

Terry Bankert. 12/14/2007

1.See Generally” The City Reader 3rd edition by LeGates and Stout 2003 Published by Routledge.


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