Friday, February 27, 2009

Faction trys to cancel national Union election. UNITE HERE

Posted here by
Terry Bankert 2/28/09

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE- I received this email press release at 5:30 PM from "Julie Kelly" <>. I sent her a response on how to verify the release and was instructed to contact Sherry Kane. I do not know Kane. I went to a Unite Here web site and the press release was not listed. I ask for verification from my original contact , from, who replied . She said John Gillis is a Vice President who comes from the Unite Side of the Union. He runs the NY/NJ Regional Joint Board. In general in this union people from the Joint Board are former Unite. People in the locals are former Here. Gillis is also the named plaintiff in the lawsuit Gillis v. Wilhelm (Wilhelm being the former President on the HERE side).
I am a hobby vlogger I don’t mind serious business as this is but just how do you confirm internet sources. I will just be transparent as above and will run with this as legitimate.
–begin press releaseFebruary 27, 2009Contact: Sherry Kane, 347-245-2123Statement from John Gillis, UNITE HERE International Vice Presidentand New York/New Jersey Regional Joint Board General ManagerNew York –
John Wilhelm and a faction of Unite Here comprised solely of former HERE leaders filed a request for a court order midnight Thursday February 26, 2009 seeking to stop the votes of 150,000 members of the Unite Here union. The voting process will be the largest and broadest in the union's history, involving workers across the nation. The process is both constitutional and highly democratic, allowing members to utilize their rights to determine the future of their union.Fearing this action, its open process, transparent reporting, and ensuing publicity the Wilhelm faction seeks to block it in federal court. The legal mechanism chosen in an attempt to silence the faction's critics and stifle debate about the union's future, employs utilization of the consent decree Wilhelm signed in 1995 when the union was threatened with a government takeover because of organized crime's influence in HERE. It revives memories of HERE's own stained history, and its attempted cynical application would have made the union's former mob bosses proud.
–end press release
The Unite Here web site identifies,.
John Gillis International Vice President/Manager18 Washington PlaceNewark, New Jersey 07102Tel. 201-422-0900Fax 201-863-0030Email:info@uniteherenynj.orgWeb: http://www.uniteherenynj.orgNew York New Jersey Regional Joint Board, Retail Division

The principal combatants of the civil war in Unite here are
Bruce S Raynor General President aligned with the Unite faction. And
John W Wilhelm President of the Hospitality Industry.
See their
picture and background .

Sphere: Related Content

Doughtery, one dysfunctional union guy.

BY Terry Bankert
Posted first on Boggling for Michigan

Some people just want to be paid for the work done.

How about you?

A worker living paycheck to pay check does not want a power struggle in a union that represents them.

They just want to be paid a fair wage rate, and to be paid timely for services rendered.

Factions can war over labors future but our working neighbors are concerned about affording dinner.

All big business organizations have shake outs.

Big Labor is big busines or a big organization, they have shake outs too.

In Detroit we saw a snapshot of the conflict going on in the union representing Hotel workers "UNITE HERE!"

Some of their members at the Detroit Riverside Hotel did not get paid.

We saw the MDP labor caucus march over from convention to confront the Hotel owners.

They met instead deposed union leader Dougherty acting as an apologist for management even though the workers had not been paid.

Hey, when they , big unions,have decision makers moving around 500 million dollars and 400,000 members like "UNITE HERE" its logical to wonder, what is the real agenda.

Are the "dysfunctions" we have seen and suffered under perpetrated by Big Business and Wall Street,( you remember, the collapse of the financial institution of the world) damaging the fabric of our US economy active in Big Labor?

Some argue what we are seeing is a functional union removing a dyfunctional local leader.

FYI ( this was posted as a comment on a previous article in BFM)--

this is not a war between UNITE and HERE The internal struggle at UNITE HERE is not between the two old merged unions.

It just seems that way because the presidents are on opposite sides.

There are many many old HERE locals lining up with the "Raynor side" and a few old UNITE entities moved to the "Wilhelm side".

It's not about industries or old loyalties, it's about sound organizing versus a bizarre cultish approach to what a union should be.

On the Wilhelm side you have folks addicted to bizarre loyalty tests and "pink sheeting" where they'll spend millions to organize 500 workers tying up a couple dozen overpaid organizers on it for 5 years as they keep workers in the dark and totally beholding to the organizer.

Stewards and reps act like overseers in the shops and keep those shops "organized" by cutting out the "disloyal" workers and befriending the bosses.

On the Raynor side you have folks who are sick and saddened to watch the hard earned investments of garment workers back to the 1800s pissed away on the failure after failure of ridiculously expensive cultish "organizing" drives and the salting of already organized shops to spy on the union's own members.

This is the side that also can't fricking imagine why Wilhelm openly opposes EFCA and yet fully understands his fixation on the Amalgamated Bank.

As this moves forward, keep a sharp eye on which side the BOSSES support.

That will tell you everything. by: GRO @ Posted to BFM Tue Feb 24, 2009 at 19:20:22 PM EST

What can we learn from the " civil" war in "UNITE HEREIU"?

"By one measure, one day earlier this month was that rarity of rarities for American labor: a good day.

The measure was that of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, which announced that union membership actually increased by 428,000 in 2008. "1

Imagine that during the Bush years union membership has gone up. Imagine what will happen under Obama, that is if big labor gets its act together.

"By another measure, though, it wasn't a good day at all for American unions..(for example).

In Oakland, Calif., the Service Employees International Union - with nearly 2 million members, the nation's most vibrant union and California's largest - took direct control of one of its stellar locals, the 150,000-member United Healthcare Workers West, ousting the elected local officers, who in turn announced that they would seek to form a rival union to the SEIU."1

Even in Detroit as we watch the civil war within UNITE HEREIU play out I have to ask is this turmoil good for our country.

In previous article I posted my pictures and video ( go to the slide show) of the Michigan Democratic Party Labor Caucus on 2/21/09 at the Detroit riverside Hotel. I have found out the Union Guy confronting the Union protesters as he stood behind the counter seemingly defending management is Joe Daughtery.

I saw this in a worker You Tube Post. SHAME ON RIVERSIDE

In the above were some of the same people in my video of the 2/21/09 Protest at the Detroit Riverside Hotel.

See my pictures and video: Thumb Nail -pictures

Slide show - active video

In the era where big business and big unions have issues causing division.

We have to keep our eye on the ball to protect the little person.

It does not appear that all are focused on protecting their workers or shareholders, here in Detroit and elsewhere.

Did the workers at Detroit Riverside Hotel ever get their paychecks?

Next I hope to talk to some of the workers and find out.

Posted Here By Terry Bankert 2/27/09

Consider continuing this discussion sharing hot tips on Face Book



Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

SALTING the wounds of a bad merger.

BY Terry Bankert 2/24/09
Posted first on Blogging for Michigan
I wonder if Miss Tucker was paid what she earned?
I wonder why the "Hotel Union Person" , The Detroit Riverside Hotel, was so angry when the Michigan Democratic Party Labor Caucus "Labor Person" leader sent 200 convention delegates , Michigan Democratic Party Convention in Cobo Hall Detroit last week end, into the " Hotel Labor Person" work place to raise a little hades on behalf of Miss Tucker and others.
See the video:
Thumb Nail Slide show
I have been going to convention for over 25 yrs. That was great stuff.
Pictures of the Michigan Democratic Party Labor Caucus 02/21/09 Thumb Nail Slide Show
This is my interpretation of events.
The smart, big, loud bombastic voice, no tie, arms flaying, and respected " Labor Caucus Person" implores his assembled members to march across the street to help a sister who the " Corporation " will not give up her pay check.
Not in our town not across the street from our convention.
Wow, my vision was a trembling timid Hotel House keeper with children to feed fired and not paid for services rendered trembling out side The Detroit Riverside Hotel ,tears of desperation in her eyes she sees the Cobo Hall marquee, The Michigan Democratic Party is in town for convention. Across the street. Numbed but drawn passed the brown bomber and the majestic picture of Coleman she sees the sign "The Labor Caucus" is meeting. Entering her eyes meet those of a saint who listens and leads her to leadership who embraces her cause.
Or is there more to this story.
Sometime we are allowed to see a snapshot of an exciting movie. This was one snapshot, a window.
Later I learned much has been in the Detroit press about the picketing at The Detroit Riverside Hotel. No Detroit regular commercial media covered the Michigan Democratic Party Labor Caucus protest.
Blogging for Michigan , your alternative truthful new source, got the scoop.
I asked several at convention ,what is the real story here?
A white haired "labor Person" whispered google will answer your questions.
So a googling I went finding a couple of articles and TV spots and another snapshot.
The Union of the Hotel workers is in a "civil war" and it is an important but unreported story. Pulitzer here I come.
It seems a bunch of "Labor People" and their Unions broke from a "Big Labor Group" the AFL-CIO a couple of years back. One group representing the garment workers UNITE , led by Mr. Raynor, merges with another group called HEREIU , led by Mr. Wilhelm, which represented Hospital and Hotel workers.

The Union of Needle trades, Industrial and Textile Employees ( UNITE led by Raynor, they have the money) merged with the Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees International Union (HEREIU led by John Wilhelm, they have the people) in 2004.
UNITE has tons of money and HEREIU has boatloads of people. Issue: Did the group with the people promise to not touch the money when they have the majority vote?
This merger of money and people is now called" UNITE HERE!"What a name.
Now corporate merger 101 would tell you that when two corporations merge the executives and shareholders better read the contract and one group of executive must go.
But not this group.
The plan was each of the leaders Raynor and Wilhelm would stay and equally share power. Just where in history has this occurred?
Raynor says that Wilhelm told him UNITES money was safe, said the fox to the chicken.
The people with the money , UNITE, must not have read the contract here called constitution of the new group UNITE HERE. What is described as a civil war broke out when the HERE faction which controls the majority vote starts flexing their muscle and spending what used to be UNITES money any way they feel like it.
Possibly their constitution calls for majority rule. Just a guess.
Meanwhile possibly, just possibly the AFL-CIO which I hear is a big player in the Michigan Democratic Party Labor Caucus threw a little muscle at the breakaway groups UNITE and HERE and that was what got the " Hotel Labor Person " so upset. But what do I know.
Waiting on the edge watching the implosion of " UNITE HERE" is a really big labor group the SEIU waiting for the opportunity to gobble up the membership and then the money , 500 million dollars and 400,000 members when the two factions split. One faction has already announced they will go with SEIU. I wonder how the AFL-CIO feels about this? Now this is just a trailer.
I hope Miss Tucker got paid, I will ask her later if I can find her.
In New York Federal Court the moneyed UNITE faction , with the money,is trying break away from the merger. Following is a lay version of the complaint which is the argument of the moneyed guys UNITE. The answer, if I can find one, or argument of HERE the group with the people will follow later, maybe.

In the United States District Court Southern District of New York the civil war of UNITE HERE is being played out. The UNITE faction is the Plaintiff and the HERE faction is the Defendant.
The UNITE faction made a number of allegations and requests in their complaint.
They say the HERE faction has " engaged in conduct that destroys the basis for the merger of these Unions the old UNITE and HERE. The UNITE wants the court to tell them they are free to go their own way and keep all of the assets they brought to the merger of 2004.
The UNITE faction wants to be released from their contract/constitution with HEREIU because the merger has failed in its essential purpose. I guess that means they are not protecting their members.
They say the HERE faction will not treat the UNITE faction fair.
They continue to claim the HEREIU faction will dominate the convention to be held June 2009 in Chicago. SO! Isn’t that what a democracy does. The majority rules. What’s new?
The UNITE argument III states "The merger agreement between UNITE and HEREIU demonstrates that the UNITE HERE Constitution does not expressly ban disaffiliation and cannot be used to deprive UNITE Chartered Bodies their assets. They want to take their money , at least 500 million dollars, and run.
The UNITE argument IV states HERIU entered into the merger to gain access to the assets of UNITE and its affiliates. From other sources it appears UNITE is flush with cash. They put in their complaint that HEREIU was in perilous financial condition. Although it had approximately 200,000 members, as a result of poor financial stewardship the union had little cash and very few investments. Their pension and health benefit funds were badly underfunded and in danger of being terminated.
In contrast UNITES financial condition was strong with cash from membership dues and substantial income from Amalgamated Bank which was wholly owned by UNITE and its affiliates.
UNITE also owned two buildings in New York City and one in New Jersey and received rental income from unaffiliated tenants.
In total UNITE has about 500 Million Dollars while HEREIU has less than 20 million.
John W Wilhelm of HEREIU represented they would create one union where power would be shared by two Presidents and the HEREIU faction would not use its superior numbers to dominate UNITE. Sounds like a fantasy to me.
UNITE President Raynor agreed to have fewer number of UNITE representative on the various boards says Wilhelm.
The two president were to make most decisions and HERE would not exercise its membership muscle. This language would not work in the real world I know of.
Basically they are using their recollection of oral pledges made before the contract/constitution was formed. Its 101 contract law that all thing must be merged in the written document or they do not exist. UNITE said they relied on what HERE told them not what was in the contract/constitution.
These guys negotiate work agreements?
This one is great. The HERE faction with the majority vote got their ducks in order before a December 17-18 2008 meeting and successfully got their resolutions passed. The complaint talks about destitute HEREIU affiliates and HEREIU’s instance on deficit spending.
This is really about old money , new need and who has the votes.
HEREIU ( the one without the money)stated on several occasions that the international Union UNITE HEREIU should simply sell off its assets and " spend everything" demonstrating and " extremely cavalier attitude towards the UNITE assets built up by generations of low paid garment and textile workers. Possibly the UNITE people should have protected themselves before the merger. Who ever their Harvard and Yale guys were, great job. Go Cooley!
They said: "The huge budget deficit demanded by the HEREIU faction to fund its goal and program demonstrates that the merger was viewed as an opportunity to exploit UNITE and plunder its assets."
In the UNITE point VII they state " The merger of UNITE and HEREIU has failed of its essential purposes"
The purpose of the merger was to increase the organizing ability of both factions. " The test of the success or failure of this merger should be wether the merged union organize substantially more workers that the two units on their own would have. Its is argued this test has not been met because the goal of organizing hundreds of thousands of new workers in the hospital industry has not been met.
There is some argument about the Western State Boards I will skip.
On 8/9/05 Local 24 joined the Midwest Joint Board. Labor Guy Daughtery was the International trustee for this local. This ended 12/31/05 and it followed with Daughtry becoming Midwest State Director of the Midwest Joint Board a full time paid position.
He sought election to President of the Food Services Division one of the division of Local 24. He instructed other full time Joint Board staff to seek election for positions on Local 24 and discouraged rank and file members from running for elected position in Local 24 so that he could continue power.
It was a by- law violation for Daughtery and others to serve in these dual positions. Wilhelm the HEREIU President knew this when he swore them in.
On 1/5/2009 Daughtery was removed as Michigan State Director being replaced by Clayola Brown.
Local 24 has begun litigation against their Midwest board and is attempting to keep them out of contact with the membership.
As party to this obstruction John Wilhelm is accused of taking retaliatory acts against the Midwest Board to include;
1. Telling Daughtry and others to strip the Detroit office of the Midwest Joint Board removing their assets.
2.Telling the Detroit employers to only deal with Daughtry as the defator officer in charge of Local 24.
3.Running a disaffiliation campaign to remove Local 24 from the Midwest Board.
4. Advising employers to give employee union dues payments to local 24 instead of the Midwest Joint Board.
5. Telling his allies to be confrontational inside and outside the Michigan State Council office head quarters with the intent of creating such a disturbance to force the landlord to keep the joint board representative out.
6. Instructing Daughtry to refuse to agree to the removal of the joint board property, including files important to representation of members.
7.Telling Daughtry to not allow the Amalgamated Life Insurance Company to remove its files impeding the servicing of medical claims for non- local n24 affiliate members.
8.Telling Daughtery and his agents to intimidate staff of the joint board who follow the directions of Brown instead of Daughtery.
9.Diverting International Union personnel and financial resources to accomplish all of these things.
UNITE argument XI says " The Defendant wrongful conduct has resulted in paralysis in UNITE HERE that cannot be allowed to continue.
I guess this means they were all to busy to help Miss Tucker?
One interesting argument concerned the "salting" used in a manner I was unfamiliar with.
" Salting" refers to the practice of recruiting union loyalist and assisting them to secure employment with employers who are target of union organizing campaigns. International Union assets are typically expended to find, recruit, train, and sometimes compensate " salts" even while they are employed on their employers payroll. UNITE claims HEREIU have salted their loyalist into shops represented by UNITE HERE for political purposes instead or organizing.
Now they are claiming they have been out politicked.
They assert this is a misuse of union assets.
What they are really looking for is the court to declare that the UNITE HERE Constitution does not prohibit the joint boards to leave UNITE HEREIU.
The Second thing they are demanding is for the court top declare that the UNITE Affiliate ( who have most of the money) to enjoin HEREIU ( who have most of the votes) from interfacing with those assets.
The third thing UNITE is asking for is the court to declare that the UNITE HEREIU contact/constitution and merger agreements are void due to the Defendants HEREIU breach of the covenants of good faith and fair dealing.
That they are void due to Defendant frustration of purposes for the merger of unite and hereiu.
And finally they want UNITE HEREIU dissolved.
After dissolution the want UNITE HEREIU assets put into a constructive trust and an accounting due to unjust enrichment. Then they will sue the beegeebers out of them.
The UNITE faction allege fraud and deceit, unclean hands of the HEREIU faction. The want any form of control estoped.
The Unite faction wants the continued jurisdiction of the PUBLIC REVIEW BOARD. That usually means UNITE must control it.
And they want damages and a jury trial.
It appears the guys with money were attempting to use the guys with larger membership number for political and organizing advantage. The card were turned on them when the guys with greater numbers exercised control and started to spend the money.
Just who advised UNITE?
Later after I get a copy I will summarize the answer of John W. Wilhelm and HEREIU
A Face Book Friend, I have 1200 and you are invited, who I know to be a SEIU member shared the following.
"Terry, you are very well on to something that has unfortunately been taking place for about five years now. And with the lay offs, downsizing etc many are scrambling and trying to hold on for dear life, organizing anyone they can find. It is in my opinion that when you mix unions or classification someone will come up short because eventually certain groups interest, will cause a conflict of interest. This internal struggle that unite is having is nothing compared to problems that is yet to come with all of these mergers. SEIU is 2 million strong internationally and growing. And steadily sending out the troops to colonize and organize."

I have a lot of questions. Your help would be appreciated. Send tips or threats to . You can join and post on my face book page for the world to read.

Where is Uncle Larry when you need him?
Posted Here By
Terry Bankert 2/24/09
Consider continuing this discussion or sharing hot tips on Face Book

To read the most recent Federal Litigation concerning Unite Here see for pdf Gillis v. Wilhelm.

Sphere: Related Content

Monday, February 23, 2009

Labor hurricaine in Detroit

2/23/09 Posted First on Blogging for Michigan

A Detroit worker at The Riverside Hotel in Detroit across from Cobo Hall did not know that she was in the eye of the intra union hurricane.

This dispute between the sub organizations in "Unite Here!" She possibly thinks her Union would be focused on protecting her rights.

The Union of Needle trades, Industrial and Textile Employees ( UNITE led by Bruce Rayner, they have the money) merged with the Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees International Union ( HERE led by John Wilhem, they have the people) in 2004.

She does not care about this. Miss Tucker just wanted her paycheck. Can you afford to miss yours. She does not care about the rift. She does knot know issues are complicated by power, money , ego and disorganizing strategies.

She just wants to be paid. She even got an NSF check which after being deposited caused her check to bounce. Now she has bank fees. Miss Tucker just wants to be paid.

A Mr Lemond out of Local 24 asked " Why are our Union Dues paying for both sides (to fight) which are pitting member against member." The Unite faction is fighting the Here faction with SEIU waiting in the wings to take them over.

Miss Tucker does not know about this ,she just wants to be paid.

Unite has the money $5 Billion in assets while Here has the membership 250, 000 members.
This group in 2005 withdrew from the AFL-CIO.

Mabey they should return. The faction with the members is trying to take the money and run the union. Mabey merger was a bad idea.

Miss Tucker does not care she just wants to be paid.

Several hotel workers in Detroit have been fired, Miss Tucker was fired. Now she really needs the money she earned.

Last Saturday the Labor Caucus of the Michigan Democratic Party rose to help their Sister by filling the lobby of The Detroit Riverside Hotel. This was exclusively covered by Blogging For Michigan.

Pictures of Democrats that staged a Protest at the Detroit Riverside Hotel

Thumb Nail

Slide show

Andy Stern with the approval of his board in a letter declared an intent to merge the unions in to SEIU.

SEIU is poised to enter Hotel Organizing.

The UNITE HERE! Convention scheduled for June in Chicago is predicted to dissolve into an out and out civil war.

But ,Miss Tucker just wants to be paid the money she earned.

Posted here by Terry Bankert
Consider continuing this discussion on Face Book.

Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, February 22, 2009

A Democratic morning and labor protest.

BY Terry Bankert

Pictures of the Michigan Democratic Party Labor Caucus

Thumb Nail
Slide Show
Pictures of Democrats that staged a Protest at the Detroit Riverside Hotel

Thumb Nail
Slide show

I think those of us who care about Flint should come together to discuss “GOOD GOVERNMENT”

Posted Here
by Terry Bankert

Consider continuing a discussion on GOOD Government on Face Book

Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Michigan Governor in Flint

BY Terry Bankert

Governor Grandholm pledges to spend every dollar Washington sends in the stimulus package. Then she will spend the money the other states cannot spend. Local units are directed to get their plans to her office by March 1st. Genesee pledges to be ready.

The Flint meeting took place at the MTA in Flint 3 pm 2/19/09. Ever wonder who these movers and shakers are that go to these meetings. A couple of pictures follow.

Thumb Nail
Slide Show

“The state is receiving $7 billion of the $787 billion plan. With a lot of money on the table, questions are being raised as to where the cash would be spent”“The governor is taking a two-day tour across the state to discuss just that.”

In Flint we are discussing the role of professionalism of public sector management. Governor Jennifer Grandholm sets a high standard. There is hope.

Posted here by Terry Bankert Consider continuing this discussion on my Face Book

Sphere: Related Content

Changing of the Guard in Flint

GOOD MORNING FLINT! By Terry Bankert 2/19/09 Last night was the real deal. The post victory bombastic strutting of the most recent victors of Flint Political Cage Fighting. The Alex Harris team “Truth” was out in full force. Alex Harris Citizen Patriot could be seen bobbing an weaving around the room. The citizens , police and firemen that sweated blood to get the 14,000 signatures to get the recall of Ex mayor Donald Williamson were there in full force. Seen in the room, gasping their last political breaths, were the protege of Donald Williamson Tracheal Young and Darryl Buchanan. Both numbed to the fact they were soon to be political corpses. The hammer fell about 5:48 pm 2/18/09. The survival shows have nothing on the great theater of politics in Flint. But this was just the warm up, for the kids. The adults were focused on City Administrator acting as Temporary Mayor Michael Brown, herein after referred to as MAYOR OF FLINT!. He brought to the council a tried and tested group of trained an seasoned professionals to get Flints House in order. Bravo, Bravo good job MayorBrown. The kids will get real bored and restless during your term Mayor Brown. But the adults are with you. A few pictures. Thumbnail Slide show Media Morph Wednesday night, Flint's interim mayor shook up City Hall by appointing and cutting several city leaders. [1] As quickly as temporary Mayor Michael Brown axed former administration officials this week, on Wednesday he ushered in the "team" that will shape the new administration.[2] Brown introduced eight new administration officials to the City Council and the public on Wednesday evening.[1] The City Council gave the green light to the changes at a special meeting. 1 Interim Mayor Mike Brown says he has a lot of work to and he has about six months to do it, and he wants to do it with the help of his own team.[1] It's probably one of biggest shake-ups the city of Flint has seen in years.[1] I've been in government in place for a long time, and one thing I know is that you need a team in place that's your team," Brown said.[1] At a packed standing-room-only council meeting attended by the who's who in the Flint community, Brown introduced a brand-new temporary administration team.[1] The group is made up of a handful of people and he's appointed a new finance director.[1] But capturing most of the attention was Alvern Locke, a retired police officer who will now lead the city's police force.[1] "Just bringing the officers back together," he said. "There's a lot of good officers who want to work, who can work, and (I want to bring) them together."[1] During the same meeting, he booted out several officials that were key players under former Mayor Don Williamson, who resigned effective Sunday.[2] Council voted to remove Bob Cook as the Parks and Recreation director and Peggy Cook as the governmental operations director.[1] The council approved all of Brown's appointments, including: • Duane Miller, governmental operations director. The retired General Motors executive from Flint said he hopes to do what he can. Although he won't have the city administrator title, Miller will handle much of the day-to-day operations of the city. [2] "I grew up here and I want to do all I can to give back and help out," said Miller, who was dismayed at the recent in-fighting at City Hall. "There was no way we could move this community forward with all of the bickering that was taking place."[2] Miller will earn an $80,000 per year salary.[2] • Leonard Smorch, finance director. Smorch was the former controller for Genesee County before retiring a few years ago. [2] Smorch, who will earn an $80,000 per year salary, said he doesn't know any of the budget details yet, but he's going to help "turn around" the budget situation. The city finished the 2007-08 fiscal year with an $8.3 million deficit, and is likely staring at another multi-million dollar deficit this year.[2] "Flint was a beautiful town," said Smorch, of Fenton, but who grew up in Flint. "We need to bring it back."[2] • Former city administrator and deputy mayor Darryl Buchanan was stripped of his current titles and given a new title of targeted special projects director. Brown said Buchanan will work on coordinating grants and audits of the city's finances and law department.[2] Buchanan, who is running for mayor, wouldn't discuss whether he was happy with his new job versus his old role.[2] "I want to help this community in any capacity that I can, whatever job that it is," said Buchanan, whose salary was cut from $95,000 to $65,000.[2] • Other new officials include Police Chief Alvern Lock; Angela Watkins as a temporary replacement for City Attorney Trachelle Young; aides Margaret Fredericks and Maxine Murray; and part-time employees Bob Campbell as communications director and Tracy Atkinson as constituent services director. [2] "We've got competent people in place," Brown said. "We've got a tremendous amount of work to do in the next six months."[2] He said the city saved about $500,000 by not filling a number of positions that were eliminated.[2] Brown got rid of three Williamson officials through a vote by City Council, including City Attorney Trachelle Young, Parks director Bob Cook and Peggy Cook, government operations director. Others who were shown the door but did not need to go before the council for a vote included utilities director Lyle Hippensteel, Super Chief Richard Dicks, economic development leader Suzanne Kayser, mayoral aide Sally Haywood and parks and recreation official Tina Conley.[2] Darryl Buchanan, who is running for mayor, has been moved to the position of special projects coordinator at a salary of $65,000 for six months.[1] Also out is City Attorney Trachelle Young, who says the move is purely political.[1] "I don't think this is going to be an ending. This may be just the beginning," she said.[1] Working with a smaller staff, Brown expects the changes will save the city about $500,000.[1] Keeping an eye on city money is top priority since it's looking at an $8-million deficit.[1] We also talked with Flint City Councilman Delrico Lloyd about the shake up. Here's what he has to say. "Change has to come to the city and fast and in of order for that, there are tough changes that need to be made a lot of changes will not be favorable for the community but drastic changes have to be made."[3] "We've got some very serious financial issues," Brown said. "We've got morale issues. We've got a respectful tone type of issue. We're trying to work on all that together."[1] The new administration team will start on the job Thursday morning.[1] Brown says he plans on being on the job for six months, and has no intentions of throwing his hat in the ring for mayor.[1] Brown said in many cases, Williamson didn't follow the proper procedures when making the appointments. Anyone who was hired under those circumstances was let go, Brown said. "This wasn't personal with these people," Brown said. "We're sending a message to all of City Hall that we're going to do things the right way, and do them by the book."[2] DO YOU WANT TO BE FLINT MAYOR? HERE IS HOW. Choosing a new mayor Nominating petitions to run for mayor will be available at the City Clerk's office on Thursday for the upcoming May 5 primary election. Candidates must have 900 registered voters sign the petition. The filing deadline will be 4 p.m. on March 10, when petitions must be turned into the clerk's office on S. Saginaw Street. The top two vote-getters on May 5 will compete in the November general election. The new mayor will serve through 2011.[2] Posted here by Terry Bankert 2/19/09 Join me in continuing this discussion on my face book. -1 -2 -3

Sphere: Related Content

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Respect is what Flint Needs.

Good Morning Flint!
By Terry Bankert 2/18/09 [2nd draft]


My City Of Flint wants to regain its respect.

Respect for Flint was lost starting with "Roger and Me" peaking with the turmoil between the legislative and executive branches of our city government. What fools fodder we have become.
Respect is what we need.

Respect is esteem (the regard in which one is held) or a sense of the worth or excellence of, a person, a personal quality, ability, or a manifestation of a personal quality or ability. In certain ways, respect manifests itself as a kind of ethic or principle, such as in the commonly taught concept of "[having] respect for others" or the ethic of reciprocity.

Many of us want the City of Flint and its people to be respected and highly regarded because of their commitment to excellence and sense of worth ( ability) as a community.

How do we achieve this "excellence" as a community.

First we have to take care of our own home. That home is the City of Flint Municipal Corporation. Our Municipal accounts are in disarray.

(1.) Our elected, selected and vested interest leaders must get Flint’s money accounts in order first.

The elected leadership is the Flint City council. The selected leadership is the City Administrator acting a temporary Mayor and department heads.

The vested interest leaders are, the downtown business people that have managed to rebuild downtown Flint and others who have improved this town amid all of its turmoil. I include the University and Colleges that have stayed in Flint and are privately re- building. I include those responsible for the new housing in Flint, any business that has stayed in Flint. I include the Flint School system. Without good school young parents will not desire to live in Flint. And lastly I include unions, churches, agencies, neighborhood groups and the individual resident that have dug in deep and are committed to living here.

A. Let the public know what are the state of Flint Finances . The Flint City Council should tell us their financial plans for the city.

My read of the Flint City Charter is that we have a strong council on financial issues and policy.

By a slight of hand, many think it is the Mayors job to set ,monitor and amend the budget but that responsibility falls clearly to the Flint City Council under the Flint City Charter.

Clear the air and let the Citizens of Flint know our real state of financial affairs.

When the City Administrator acting as temporary mayor presents a budget in April what an opportunity to reinvigorate the city? The community must be advised fully.

B. Balance our budget and avoid another State take over at all costs. Do this harsh duty fairly but quickly, before the August election.

C.Use the Council powers of investigation and audit to clear the air of any past actions and impact on current and future budgets. Give who ever the new mayor is breathing space to rebuild Flints service capabilities along the lines of professional management.

D. Regularly advise the public in understandable terms of our current financial plight and how we are getting our economic house in order.

2.Our next mayor and the current city administrator acting as temporary mayor must commit Flint to excellence in municipal administration.

A.Appointments must all be professionally competent

B.Demand a culture of professionalism and dedication to serving the public

C. Report regularly to the public the status of Flint Public service delivery, police, fire, water, roads, etc...

D. Report to the Flint community on how we are building for our future. Put in place mechanisms to cause this. Bring community leaders into this process and regularly advise the public.

The Flint Citizens through individual actions and organizations must be brought into the process of citizen participation.

The three prongs of business, neighborhood, institutions must be brought together. I include the Flint Shools System as a critical institution. We must all work together for Flint.

The real work of Flint occurs within these prongs.

Respect the tremendous value of developers have when they are involved in advocating city policy decisions. There is not city in America that can grow without the involvement of private developers or organizations like Uptown investment.

Respect them, give them their dues, but do not let them run the show.

Institutions like the Mott Foundation, are a natural resource ,a water fall of public benefit.

We did not bring them here, we cannot redirect their activities . We must can respect the foundations. Allow this institution to become fully engaged in the public benefit of Flint. They have a right to their private agenda of "Good". They will pursue their agenda some where why not here.

The neighborhood groups should be supported, not told what to do but helped as they ask for help and open the door to these groups to participate with business and institutions in the future of Flint.

By a commitment to excellence that begins with who ever sits in the Mayors seat, the department heads, policies developed , the monitoring of service delivery and the actions of individual employees we can commit to a search for excellence and respect.

The work environment in the City of Flint has been horrible. A new tone is being set today. The next Mayor must commit to continuing a search for excellence in delivery of municipal service and bring this culture of excellence to the individual employees.

We have a special responsibility to those that work for us. Municipal employees are our employees. They should be treated with the dignity and respect you would want from your own employer.

Our business the Municipal Corporation of the City of Flint must downsize. That can only mean fewer people. This must be done with compassion but firmly. A logical process to preserve basic service must be in place. The executive and legislative branches as equal partners, which they are under the charter, must commit to this painful process.

Flint can begin to regain respect by how it deals with our " accounts" and how we get them in order.

Flint will be measured by our choice for our next Mayor. What kind of Mayor will give us that respect.

1. A Mayor that can recruit, from within or from the outside, and retain professional leadership to delivery Flint services. These professionals must follow the priorities set by the Mayor in organization and the Flint City Council by funding. These professionals must respect the role of the council to set and monitor the budget.

2. A Mayor with the ability to bring together the three prongs of our community business, institutions and the neighborhoods is critical to regaining our respect.

3. A Mayor who will be respected by new business that may with to look at Flint for location. Our Mayor must be respected by other local and State of government agencies . Intergovernmental cooperation is a basic requirement of new business development, efficient and effective delivery of services.

4. Inter governmental co-operation is essential. Flint must come back to the table with other units of government in Genesee County , Regional and State Wide. These relationships are essential.

If we can accomplish these things within the year we will be well on the way to regaining respect as a Municipal Corporation and a people who have chosen to live in Flint Michigan.

Posted Here by
Terry Bankert
Consider Continuing this discussion on Face Book

Sphere: Related Content

Saturday, February 14, 2009

WHo should sit in your ambulance?

Happy Valentines Day
by Terry Bankert

SATURDAY 2/14/09

On Saturday I host a Radio Program “Know the Law” where I discuss family law and how to protect your rights in a family breakup.

Periodically we discuss Flint Public policy issues. Today we will have a conversation about emergency ambulance service in Flint MI USA with the President of the Flint Fire Fighters Union. For your family law questions call me at 235-1970 any time today and I will return your call today.

You are invited to join in with your concerns about EMS services by calling 239-5733.

The show is aired live WFLT 1420 AM Saturday’s 9:00- 9:30 am.

All copy rights are released, local media may use comments on this program and even cover the broadcast with questions.[ You don’t know unless you ask. WFLT is on Averil next to Good Will.]


A poem to my wife!

LYNN :You are my heart, my hope, my help, The passion that is me, The whole of which I am a part, My peace, my ecstasy.

:You are my future, present, past, My ship, my sail, my ocean, The wind that brings me home again, The home for every motion.

LYNN:You live within me, yet I am Without you all alone. With you I am full of light; Without you I am stone. Is this foolish? Yes, perhaps, But also it is true. I think of life as something I Can spend with only you. Ah, my love! Love longs for such Sweet celebrants as this!Love is a burden and a joy, Slavery and bliss. This day of love come love with me,

LYNN:Come sing with me my song. Come be my Valentine, and I Will love you my life long, my love, Will love you my life long.

I LOVE YOU LYNN The above has been modified. Author unknown

NEXT - I will give my propers to WFLT, The CPS Courier and all of my friends the “Good People of Flint “that listen to this Broadcast Today we will talk about a community issue “Emergency Life Support ambulance service in the City of Flint. For your family law questions call my office 235-1970 this is forwarded to my cell phone and I will be in my office from 10:30 to 1:30 today.

To those that have encouraged me in my quest to be appointed to the Genesee County Bench Probate Court seat assigned to the Family Court thank you. I have formally applied. The interviews are in March. If you wish to help talk to your leadership Church, union, elected and where appropriate make a contact on my behalf to the office of Governor Jennifer Grandholm.


President of the Flint Firefighters.

Welcome Mr. Barton.

Sheriff Robert Pickell at a recent meeting of the Genesee County Board of Commissioners said “ Its time for Genesee County to take over the paramedic emergency runs into the City of Flint.” MR. BARTON DO YOU AGREE, AND WHY?

Sheriff Pickell inferred the community has not received adequate service for the $700,000 per year that the Flint Fire Department receives from the Emergency Service Millage. This millage has been in effect for 20 years. MR BARTON IS THIS TRUE AND WHY?

Please describe what the Millage is?

MR BARTON You stated that “ No one can give the service that we provide. “Please explain what you mean.

A Flint County Commission Omar Sims said response time is slow in Flint. Is this true?

A firefighter Rico Phillips at the last County Commission meeting on this issue asked “ Is the system broken? What is the real reason Sheriff Pickell wants to take this service over.”

MR BARTON Why do you think Sheriff Pickell wants to take this service over?

If Sheriff Pickell is successful how will this impact emergency advance life support call in the City of Flint?

How will the Sheriffs proposal affect Response time?

Type of personnel that will respond under the Sheriffs Plan?

A fire Fighter Trent Farnsworth sent an email that I distributed in it he said Sheriff Pickell has poorly managed the EMS services he currently controls. Is this true? He said the system is fractured.

What does that mean?

He said “ The terms of the millage are being violated by Pickell insistence of a money grab? What does that mean?

How could the millage distribution be contrary to the intent of the millage.

The last I heard there is a Genesee County Commission meeting scheduled for 2/18/09. Is this meeting still on , what will happen, can the community speak at this meeting?



Posted Here By Terry Bankert 2/14/09

You are invited to continue this discussion here or on Face Book

Please circulate. 117797

Sphere: Related Content

Friday, February 13, 2009

Budget of State of Michgian

2/13/09 By Terry Bankert
When you think about the State or National budgets just when do your eyes glaze over as that deer in the headlights expression emerges?

In language we can understand how do we educate ourselves on this issue? For me “ Blogging for Michigan “ is a good place to start.

Here wizardkitten ( don’t you love these names) posted a state release. If its good enough for her(?) Its good enough for me.

“The fiscal year 2010 budget recommendation reaffirms the governor's commitment to creating jobs, providing the education and training citizens need to fill them, and protecting families in this time of economic challenge.

The No Worker Left Behind program, the 21st Century Jobs Fund, funding for community colleges - key partners in expanded job training - and revenue sharing are all maintained. Additional investments in the state's unemployment insurance system, child welfare system, and State Police crime labs are recommended. Health care for vulnerable citizens is also protected.

No Medicaid program cuts are recommended and health care coverage is expanded to 4,000 disabled children at no additional state cost. The overall budget totals $44.2 billion and includes $8.9 billion in general fund spending, $11.4 billion from the School Aid Fund, and recognizes $13.3 billion in federal revenues.

To address the state's on-going structural deficit, Granholm's proposal recommends $670 million in spending reductions and government reforms, including elimination of the Department of History, Arts, and Libraries.

In addition, the budget recommends $230 million in revenue adjustments through tax loophole closures, increased liquor license fees and permit revenues, lottery investments, and tax enforcement actions. As many as 1,500 employee layoffs are expected by the end of fiscal year 2010.
• Closing several additional correctional facilities;
• Closing the Department of Community Health's Mount Pleasant Center for Persons with Developmental Disabilities, transferring the patients to community- care settings, as appropriate;
• Closing the Department of Human Services' Maxey Woodland Training Center, transferring youth offenders to a smaller, more cost-effective facility on the Maxey campus, to allow the Department of Corrections to use that facility to house male inmates;
• Closing the Michigan State Police crime lab in Marquette;
• Ending financial support for the state fairs in Detroit and Upper Peninsula;
• Eliminating supplemental financial support for the horse-racing industry;
• Returning responsibility for wetlands protection to the federal Environmental Protection Agency;
• Overhauling the state's higher education scholarship programs to create a single merit-based scholarship - Michigan Promise Grants - and a single needs-based scholarship - Michigan College Access Grants - open to all students attending public or private institutions,
• Combining the Cooperative Extension Service and Agricultural Experiment Station;
• Consolidating energy programs in the Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth;
• Eliminating the Department of History, Arts, and Libraries and funding for state arts grants;
• Opening a one-stop-shop for business - a simple Web portal where hundreds of business transactions come together seamlessly on-line;
• Seeking employee concessions;
• Expanding investment in community-based monitoring for parolees;
• Accelerating transition of seniors and the disabled from nursing homes to community-care settings.”
• Eliminating more than $50 million in earmarks, including pilot programs and programs which serve single school districts, communities or regions;
• $120 million in cuts in the Department of Corrections, including the closure of additional facilities;
• $106 million in cuts in the Department of Community Health, including reductions in the Office of Services to the Aging, elimination of the Office of Drug Control Policy and changes in prescription drug purchasing;
• $100 million in cuts in the Department of Human Services, including eliminating funding for before and after school programs and the state supplemental payment for Supplemental Security Income recipients;
• $164 million in cuts to K-12 spending, which includes a reduction in per-pupil foundation allowance of $59 per student; and
• $100 million in cuts to higher education funding, including a three-percent reduction to university operations.”[1]

Eric b on the site Michigan Liberal links to budget document, Governor Granholm’s 2010 Executive Budget Addresses Structural Deficit, Protects Families.

“The fiscal year 2010 budget recommendation reaffirms the governor’s commitment to creating jobs, providing the education and training citizens need to fill them, and protecting families in this time of economic challenge.

The No Worker Left Behind program, the 21st Century Jobs Fund, funding for community colleges – key partners in expanded job training – and revenue sharing are all maintained. Additional investments in the state’s unemployment insurance system, child welfare system, and State Police crime labs are recommended. Health care for vulnerable citizens is also protected.

No Medicaid program cuts are recommended and health care coverage is expanded to 4,000 disabled children at no additional state cost.”[2]

The State Budget Directors web site links to the entire budget proposal.[3]

“This is a time of unprecedented challenge for the entire nation and Michigan is feeling the impact. To ensure that we emerge from this period a stronger, more nimble,more financially stable state will require focus, discipline and a willingness to make tough decisions.” “Governor Granholm’s fiscal year 2010 Executive Budget Recommendation is a critical component in achieving that goal.

It offers the fiscal discipline that is required to address the state’s on-going structural deficit, while continuing to provide the essential services that are needed to help citizens weather the current economic storm.”[3]

So are there any questions?

Here is my analysis.

We have the best Governor in the United States.
She has built a “tested” team.
They will do the right thing and protect those that cannot protect themselves.

On the big issues you just have to support the people you trust.

We , as responsible citizes” should back this budget.

How do we do that email, call ,write your organizational leaders and your elected leaders.

If you need to call out for help in understanding.

I suggest “ Here kitty, kitty , kitty!”

Posted here by Terry Bankert 2/13/09

You are invited to continue this discussion here or on my face book


Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, February 12, 2009

What are the Characteristics of a Good Mayor?

By Terry Bankert

Its not about race or political party its about the ability to lead.

Who should be our next Mayor?


Lets unbundle this. What characteristics should a mayor have?

My suggestions; expierence in government expierence c.approachable ,believable ability to build coalitions .

What are your suggestions?

Then who can we recruit that has these characteristics.

What are you willing to do to get the type of person you most desire elected Mayor of Flint MI USA.

I am willing to give 10hrs a week, $1,000 and to zealously promote this person on all venues.

Posted Here by
Terry Bankert
You are invited to continue this discussion here or on Face Book

Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Who are the deal makers in Flint?

BY Terry Bankert

A couple of photos and video from the last meeting of the flint City Council 2/9/09.
Public Speakers raised these points;

1.The City needs a forensic audit.

2.We need a shift in our culture, We need to be more creative, if we can think it we can do it.

3.Our city was captured, now we are free.

4.We need a vibrant downtown.

Thumb nail
Slide show


1." I plan to tap into some real good thinkers in the community and have them work with me."
2.One or two could end up joining the temporary administration."
3."Brown said he will move quickly and bring his consensus -building leadership style to the mayors office."

1." I don’t think the whole story is being told."
2. " The bigger question is this: Who is calling the shots for the people of the City of Flint?"
3. " A deal has been brokered here and I’m sure the dealers around the table don’t bear any resemblance to the average citizen in this community."

1.State Senator John Gleason (D) Flushing described Brown as a sensitive soul who ‘has always made those in need his most desired goal"
2." You’ve got someone there ...[Darryl Buchanan ex-city administrator]..who is very qualified to take care of the city in its entirety, and then you put someone in there that only has a color that’s different," said Francis Gilcrest president of the local NAACP"
3.Gilcrest continued" That never smelled right to me. It did not look to me to be something that could be anything other than racist. It looks like a deal was brokered to make sure a black person was isn’t running the city. I’m really disappointed."
4.Gilcreast continued" We need someone with racial understanding."
5.NAACP Bishop Bernadel Jefferson of Faith Deliverance Center said Buchanan is qualified to be Mayor"

"Flint businessman Phil Shaltz of Uptown Reinvestment Corp. , which plans to convert the former Character Inn into College student housing, said the Mayor has helped the local business community. " Mike Brown is very accomplished and we feel that if the mayor has confidence in him, then we’ very excited."

From the Flint Journal Editorial 2/10/09
1.[ A recall]..."could have saddled the city with an unwelcome winner take all election to replace him
2.’ Now the transition in power will take the more traditional and appropriate route with a primary in May and a General election in August."
The Journal Editorial stated" We also hope this schedule will allow for a serious discussion about whether to jettison the citys charter. ..[.the Williamson chaos results in]...making a city manager form of government enticing."

1.Stabilize Flint Government reestablishing the concepts of good government, ethics, efficiency and effectiveness. THAT’S GOOD
2. Return Flint to a failed City Manager organization to avoid having to deal with a strong mayor. THAT’S BAD
3. To reorganize Genesee County to bring in a county executive. MY MIND IS OPEN TO THAT.

Posted here by Terry Bankert
Consider continuing this discussion on Face book


Sphere: Related Content

Monday, February 9, 2009

Flint Fire Fighter Paramedic speaks out.

By Terry Bankert


FYI from a face Book Friend, with permission This article was written reacting to my article on the Proposed ambulance service consolidation to a county controlled public service.

Mr. Bankert... I am contacting you regarding the subject above for some obvious but very important reasons.

First of all, I am a Flint firefighter paramedic who has proudly served the citizens for 17 years and was a member of the second class ever graduated through the Genesys Health educational paramedic program.

Let me reiterate and stress the importance of the term "citizens" that I have served.
That includes multitudes of outlying county residents during my tenure while on duty as a dual trained firefighter/paramedic.

Bob Pickell seems to have selective memory as it pertains to who has benefitted from a working partnership within the realm of the EMS Millage.

I can remember many times in the past where Pickell has found it necessary to trim his paramedic roster on a daily basis due to vacations, unseen work stoppages , or simply the inability to be prudent with his operating budget.

I for one know first hand of the dire consequences for working for a municipality that squanders taxpayer money.

I challenge the current Genesee County Board of Commissioners to formulate a plan which will dedicate a portion of the advanced life support personnel from the sheriff's dept. within the City of Flint's boundaries and guarantee their availability.

The system is fractured....this we all must admit. But having career beaurocrats , including Bob Pickell, decide it's future is foolish and furthermore illegal in my eyes.

The voters of this county made a decision to pass the millage as it was constructed....with a consortium in place governing the advanced life support as it pertains to the city of Flint AND Genesee County and the monies it requires to operate it.

Suppose you voted for the millage and it's passage provided ALS coverage you anticipated for a family member within Flint.

I believe the terms of the millage are being violated by Pickell's insistence of a money grab being conveniently orchastrated during tough economic times.

Coincidence?.......I don't think so for a minute, and neither should any one else.

Thank you so much for your time and your continued involvement within the community. Regards.......

Trent A. Farnsworth 6007 N. McKinley Rd. Flushing, MI 48433

Posted here by Terry Bankert
Consider continuing this discussion on Face Book opposing views welcomed.

Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Retooling Michigan ,start with IT

BY Terry Bankert


Lt. Governor John Cherry said he will begin soon seeking input from business leaders, the faith community, citizens and others as he takes on the charge of revamping state government.

MY THOUGHTS AS AN OTHER: We are in an era of data driven dispersered informations system that all state departments rely on. Start first with your data deliver systems.

“To enhance productivity, (Michigan) agencies require networking infrastructures that rapidly deliver applications, data, and messaging to every office. These solutions must be standards-based to ensure interoperability with current and future systems.

They need to support e-government strategies to expedite administrative tasks and serve constituents, contractors, and vendors with online transactions and information. To satisfy security mandates, they must reliably share data with other agencies at federal, state, and local levels. To meet future needs, these communication platforms also must scale cost-effectively, providing additional bandwidth without large expenditures.

Moreover, they should be simple to manage and maintain, reducing pressure on under-resourced IT staffs. “ Voice As (Michigan) agencies migrate to e-governance, telephony remains essential to their operations. Whether for routine tasks or emergencies, employees need phones to communicate with agencies, constituents, the private sector, and each other. Traditional PBX systems, however, are costly to own and operate.

They are difficult to manage, requiring service technicians for even minor modifications such as moving, adding, or changing phones. Their recurring long-distance tolls further add to their high cost of ownership. Based on proprietary technologies, they lack the flexibility to integrate distributed sites or support emerging applications.

These systems are also difficult to expand, reducing their life cycles. (Michgian) agencies require the same IP voice solutions that provide advanced features for the private sector. Avoiding the complexity and expense of conventional platforms, IP telephony systems dramatically reduce costs and enhancing productivity for organizations worldwide.

Moreover, standards-based IP telephony platforms offer the lowest cost of ownership and the strongest investment of public funds. WirelessTo economize, (Michgian) agencies require networking solutions that are flexible and easy to deploy. They must be able to inexpensively add users, extend LANs, and provision all sites with connectivity-even hard-to-wire historical and legacy buildings.

They need to link buildings without installing costly cables under streets or sidewalks. Agencies also must support mobile employees using laptop computers and handheld devices by delivering untethered yet secure access to applications and information systems.

These solutions should be standards-based to ensure cost-saving interoperability with existing and future technologies. Concept: The streamlining could become virtual immediately and physical later. SEE: Lt. Gov.

John Cherry , generally,says state government”

1. “Needs to be more transparent” “Transparency Recommendations: "Post online rules, regulations and requirements for government services (such as requirements for obtaining a license) to minimize subjective actions by officials. Highly-placed public officials can expedite transparency and accountability efforts by making their offices positive examples of openness. When putting services online, give citizens the ability to track the status of their applications. Train civil servants and provide incentives to reform. Integrate transparency and process reform to simplify regulations and procedures. “ See:

2.”Needs to be reduced reduced and retooled for the 21st century.” Retool to ;adjust; optimize; to rebuild.

I argue that to retool you start where you end. What information do decision makers , department and agency personnel and the public need about their Michigan government. How can we best organize these information system needs and then what physical arrangements do we house them in? Put like things together. What do you think about the above or the following? MICHIGAN :

3. Needs to reduce the number of state departments from 18 to eight,
3A• The economy, including job creation and economic development.
3B• State sustainability, which takes in the departments of natural resources, environmental quality and agriculture.
3C• Better government, including departments such as management and budget, treasury and information technology.
3D• Human services, likely combining the departments of human services and community health.
3E• Education, which would include K-12 public schools, community colleges and higher education.
3F• Public safety, an area that includes the departments of corrections and military and veterans affairs and the Michigan State Police.
3G• Attorney general and secretary of state. These are two constitutionally designated departments that can't be rolled up without approval of a statewide ballot proposal.

4.Needs to reform the civil service system

5.Needs to develop more public-private partnerships.

6. Needs to move quickly and embrace change

7.Needs to "rethink state government.

8.Needs to ask leaders throughout Michigan to help determine which challenges that the state is likely to face and how best to fight those challenges.

9.Needs to engage the public to offer their opinions online or during a series of informational hearings, Cherry said.

10. Needs to build a broad consensus on how to modernize the state of Michigan,"

11.Needs to let citizens know what goes on when public officials conduct public business.

12. Needs to give Citizens greater access to represent their point of view to state government.

13. Needs to give citizens greater access to the records of state government so they can benefit from the information that we as policy makers utilize.

14. Needs to let citizens have information available to them about how we are conducting our business. How can each of these needs be met?

Posted here by Terry Bankert

Consider continuing this discussion on my facebook page.

- see -1

Sphere: Related Content

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Who will call the meeting? You?

By Terry Bankert


My effort to seek the Gubernatorial appointment to fill the vacancy on the 7th District Probate Court seat recently vacated is going well. Donna Proffer has said she supports me. Thank You.

All applicants must formally apply. Some of us were continued last time because we have gone through the process the previous year.

My ultimate objective is to be a sitting judge so I will go through this vetting process again.

Unless there is a grass roots ground swell the cards are stacked against me. I do not know the governor. She may know me if she reads my blogs, one would hope she is too busy. The people I know who have access to the governor probably will be swayed by advocates of one candidate and the candidate herself. This candidate is well equipped for the job and political histories are important in a political appointment.

Good Luck Barb.

At some point I will run against an incumbent. I’ll just draw straws.

GENESEE COUNTY PROBATE SEMINAR. As luck would have it I attended this local seminar sponsored by The Genesee County Bar association and its most competent Director Ramona Sain. I took only a couple photos, Shala threatened me with bodily injury if I videoed her again. Thumb nail Slide show Yes I am taking a camera class, the blurry will end. Remedial English is contemplated. Its humbling to be humble.

WOULD SOMEBODY CALL THE MEETING. The time is right for a non office holder or institutional group to call a meeting of a cross section, open invitation, of people institutions and business committed to building a future for Flint. If a status group will come together to fund it and call the meeting , I’ll run it. I am up to it are you?

WFLT 1420 AM RADIO 9:00 TO 9:30 AM Terry Bankert radio show “ Know the Law.” Todays issues are spousal support and community issues. This is a call in show. 239-5733 [810]. Believe or not I lecture recent court of appeals decisions focusing on one topic. This one is spousal support. The purpose is to break down barriers through information. If you know your rights you then are better equipped to protect your rights and to navigate through the emotional waters of a domestic proceeding. See: article 2/6/09

My article in the CPSA Courier is on mediation. I am a court certified domestic mediator. Try mediation for privacy and dignity in a domestic proceeding. Call 235-1970. see:

MICHIGAN PUBLIC RADIO. I was interviewed Friday. Following is a video of a radio interview? Thumbnails SlideShow

FRIDAYS WILD RUMOR. Buchanan was fired?

FLINT TALK RADIO. I am not going to produce another segment for 2 weeks. I will switch to a 30 min format with a guest and we will explore a Flint issue. The value to guests is the hot link that can be used. If you want to be a guest on this segment or one of my 60 second pod casts call me at 235-1970. Rules, we will talk about one researched issue you must declare your position ahead of time I will argue the opposite. I dare you. 235-1970. Would net work media hire me please, or do I really just have delusions of grander?

TODAYS AGENDA-BANKERT 9 Am WFLT call in Radio 239-5733 Call in. Saturday, February 7, Genesee County Democratic Party Winter Convention. Registration begins at 9:15 AM, convention begins at 10:00 AM, at UAW Local 651, 3518 Longway Blvd (between Center and Averill), Flint. Purpose is to elect delegates to the State Party Convention and consider resolutions. By Party rules, delegates to the County Convention are precinct delegates and elected Democratic officials and Party nominees at the last general election. I will be there at 9:45 check in talk to a few people then move on.

Saturday, February 7, A CONFERENCE TO PROMOTE RACIAL HEALING THROUGH URBAN SUBURBAN MINISTRY, Reverend Smith Facilitator. Theme Biblical reconciliation: The Real Problem is sin not skin. 10: 00 am lectures and workshop. LOCATION, Peace Presbyterian Church, 1521 N. Elms Road, Flint, 810-230-9544 FREE

Thursday, February 12, Genesee County Democratic Party Meetings, Executive Committee 6:00 PM, General Membership 7:15 PM. At UAW Region 1C, 1940 W. Atherton Road.

Friday, February 20, Democratic Club 225 Lunch, Kathryn Hunter-Williams will speak about Flint's role in the Underground Railroad as we celebrate Black History Month. Noon at Walli's, 1341 S. Center Road, Burton. FREE to members of Club 225 in good standing, guests $15. Please RSVP by Wednesday, February 18 to Donna Proffer at 694-2653.

Saturday, February 21, Michigan Democratic Party Winter Convention. At Cobo Hall, Detroit. Details to be announced.

MUST READING FOR PUBLIC POLICY JUNKIES. BLOGGING FOR MICHIGAN for the best economic alalysis and other stuff.


My opinion tomorrow.

If you see Jennifer or John today a plug for me would be appreciated. I AM ASKING FOR YOUR SUPPORT AND HELP.

Posted here by Terry Bankert

Please consider continuing this discussion on Face Book.


Sphere: Related Content

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Mike Brown the rest of the story!

By Terry Bankert

In Flint MI USA the lions are circling, what they think to be soon a political carcass, politics as usual or is there another agenda?

Ready, Early now Brown so long is the journey so short is the stay.

Why bring a professionally competent person with excellent ties to the very top decision makers in state government? Possible answer, to keep Flint out of another full state receivership. This move is not about the recall its about state receivership.

The lynch pin of the Flint City Charter is the City Administrator position.

In the contest between the pressure of unfetter political leadership and demands for professional decision making and management of our city the City Administrator position operating within a paradigm of “competence”is critical to a well run city.

In all of the strong mayor administrations ,since the 1974 vote brining in our current charter, we have had only three city administrator prepared to fill the professionally demanding and critically important position of Flint City Administrator.

35 years and we get only 3.

Why because we the people have not demanded that our City Council comply with the spirit and intent of our city charter.

The council has encourage the placement of politicians in this professional position. That is except now.

All downtown want to avoid the loss of power of a state receivership, they have found a way. That way is Mike Brown.

Here is a lay test. A Flint City Administrator should be qualified to hold the position of city manager or township manager anywhere in the mid west.

A professional city administrator with solid Lansing ties can cause Flint to avoid receivership!

Mr. Brown meets this simple subjective test.

And he can cause Flint to avoid receivership. Good pick. Once again without our public involvement the council slams another appointment through.

The realities of Flint and the events to follow may show this to have been the only course. We have an excellent City Charter. But a charter has no power if we, voters, do not demand excellence and accountability of our Council and Mayor.

We have been woefully quiet and not demanded excellence. Mike Brown brings excellence to the table. I hope he has enough time to make a difference. and keep Flint out of State Recievership.

Here is a random thought, just a wild guess.

Lets hypothetically assume the powers to be in Lansing , and as troubled as the state economy is, they may soon be required because of Flint budget problems to place the city back into receivership. Who would they pick to be the state receiver? Mike Brown would be an excellent pick.

SO to continue hypothetically if you place Mike Brown in as City Administrator and he works closely with Governor Jennifer Grandholm, and his personal friends Lt. Gov. John Cherry and State budget director Robert Emerson the state does not fully place Flint in a receivership because they now have a local decision maker they trust. Just a wild Guess.

In this analysis Don Williamson is not going anywhere, this is not a last ditch effort to avoid recall.

This is a logical, reasonable, and successful way to avoid state receivership.

Now I am not spinning , positioning or shifting alliances, when I was Ombudsman ,a million years ago, I regularly argued for charter compliance. I regret I was not more effective in mobilizing you to this cause.

From my comfortably seat on the sideline I will chant,” follow the charter”, “avoid state receivership at all cost”.

The roar from the community is to keep us out of state receivership, stabilize the management of the City of Flint, improve our image so we are not longer a laughing stock, tell us what going on, transparency and full public disclosure and debate on policy.

Those of us who have stayed in Flint, kept our business in Flint deserve no less.

Posted Here by Terry Bankert 1/5/09
Consider continuing this discussion on Face Book

- Flint City Charter$fn=default.htm$3.0$vid=amlegal:flint_mi

Whenever a vacancy occurs in the office of the Mayor, the remainder of the unexpired term shall be filled as follows:
A. if one year or less remains in the unexpired term, the Council shall within thirty (30) days appoint a person having the qualification for such office to serve as Acting Mayor during the remainder of the unexpired term.
1. The Acting Mayor shall possess all the powers of the Mayor as provided by this Charter, except the power to remove Mayoral appointees. The power to remove appointees of the Mayor may not be exercised without the concurrence of the City Council.
2. The Acting Mayor shall receive the same compensation as provided for the office of Mayor.
B. if more than one year remains in the unexpired term, the City Council shall either:
1. Within ten (10) days call a special primary election to be held within ninety (90) days thereafter to fill such a vacancy. A general election shall be called not less than forty-nine (49) nor more than sixty (60) days after the date of the primary election, or
2. Call primary and general elections to be concurrent with the next State primary and general November election if such vacancy occurs within one year prior to said State general November election.
C. Until such time as the Acting Mayor is appointed pursuant to paragraph A above, or until a Mayor is elected pursuant to paragraph B above, the City Administrator shall serve as Temporary Mayor. The City Administrator shall possess all the powers of the Mayor as provided in this Charter, except the power to remove Mayor appointees and the power of veto. Appointees of the Mayor may not be removed by the City Administrator serving in the capacity of Temporary Mayor without the concurrence of the City Council.
(Adopted by the electorate, 11-5-74)

Sphere: Related Content

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Will the ambulance come when you call.

BY Terry Bankert

About 50 Flint firefighters and a 100 other citizens today at the Genesee County Board of Commissioners meeting spoke to block a proposal for the county to take over paramedic runs inside the city. Are you concerned an ambulance will come to your home in Flint if the county controls the ambulance dispatch?

Get involved in the debate under way over the future of Flint's paramedic service. “The sheriff ( Robert Pickell)says it's time for Genesee County to take over. The county gives the Flint Fire Department roughly $700,000 a year for paramedic service within the city.That millage agreement has been in place for almost 20 years. "

"But Sheriff Robert Pickell wants to end it.”

I attended part of this meeting and took a couple of pictures and videos.


Slide Show

"We feel like no one can give the service we give," said Raymond Barton, president of the Flint firefighters union. "We do this service with pride."

“County Sheriff Robert J. Pickell today proposed changing the arrangement that had sent paramedic millage money to the city of Flint in return for the fire department making medical runs in the city. That arrangement has been in place since at least 1990.Pickell said he would hire at least seven additional paramedics with the property tax money.”

Several paramedics and firefighters were addressing commissioners in advance of the board considering the proposal. A similar plan died less than two ago after initially being approved by the commissioners. Members then became increasingly worried that the expansion might bankrupt the county's paramedic program. The Flint ambulance community argues Pickell is trying to grab all the money in this county for his program .“

One of Flint County Commissioners seems to be siding with Pickell. "All I know is that when a call goes out in a district that I represent, there's a time lapse," said County Commissioner Omar Sims. Sims wants the city to explain how it's spending the $700,000 in millage money it gets every year for EMS. "In tough times, people have to be accountable," Sims said.”

One citizen posted on the mlive article and stated”Furthermore, don't ever think that the Flint firemen should be set aside. They do the City of Flint a great service. They are sometimes the first on scene. Whether it’s a medical or a fire. ( to a critic of Flint) You obviously don't live in the City or have ever required fire/ems service. Two thumbs up for Flint Fire.( Not )Centralized EMS - please lets cost this county more money that we don't have to bring in one ambulance service that will end up charging the county to run its service here.... No one works for free.

The balancing act of efficiency ( cost)and effectiveness ( saving lives) will determine the analyst viability of Centralized ambulance services. Lives , turf and political power are at stake. This is an issue worth of your attention. "Was the system broken somehow? Was there some reason the sheriff decided to take it over now?" said Flint firefighter Rico Phillips.”

“Tuesday, commissioners voted to postpone debate until a committee meeting on Feb. 18.”

As a Flint taxpayer residential and business I am very interested in this issue. I am looking for a full debate. Lives are at stake here I believe voters need to be convinced that if a Sheriff or County Commission controls dispatch of all ambulance services will it improve response times to Flint poor and elderly.

Convince us Sheriff. Lets have active discussion , involve the community.

The last thing this issue need is power politics.

Just where were our city leaders at this meeting and will the commissioners from Flint seek our comment?

Is this the first step of county consolidation and centralization of services? Will this centralization led to a county executive.

If yes is this good for the citizens of Flint?

Posted Here by Terry Bankert

You are invited to continue this discussion on Face Book



Sphere: Related Content

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Governors appointment

01 /02/09
By Terry Bankert


I have been active in the community for 27 years. On occasion I have managed political campaigns work on 100's and was Executive Director of the Genesee County Democratic Party.

I have an extensive record of community service and held important public positions, Flint City Clerk and Flint Ombudsman. But after a failed city council race and two missed applications for gubernatorial appointment I need help in my own political initiatives.

I am asking you for that help.

Today I wish to announce to you that I will ask Governor Jennifer Grandholm to appoint me to the Genesee County Probate seat recently vacated . The Governor does not know me well but will possibly listen to her friends and the people of the Genesee County Community and state.

Here I have posted a short video announcing my interest. This is followed by my vita.

Thumbnail with text.

Video 1.2 min


Currently there are a half dozen names of qualified attorneys’s interested in this position circulating . They represent a broad spectrum of backgrounds for the governor to choose from.

I have practiced family law for 14 years. It is my exclusive practice area. I am a certified mediator in Family Law. I can claim a wide variety of community service.

But this is a political appointment by the Governor.

I am not a fund-raiser for the governor and have not delivered any votes to her except my own.

I meet the Governors high Standards of legal professional excellence. But that is for her to decide.

To be successful will require an out pouring of support from members of the Genesee County Community and the State. I ask people such as your self to support my candidacy. Consider making the appropriate expression of support through your Union, Church or elected officials and ask that your feeling be conveyed to the Governor. A direct contact if appropriate would help.

Several of my friend have said I have in the past been too low key about my interest in a position. I hope to correct that here. Letters and personal contacts will follow to those who may have impact in this type of decision. I shall formally apply this week and seek appropriate audience.
I have chosen the path of internet and grass roots populism to secure a gubernatorial appointment. It’s a new day in politics.
Your independent actions communicating support for my candidacy to opinion leaders and the

Governor will be greatly appreciated.

The application deadline is 2/17/09. I plan to pursue this application in the usual manner also.
Please share your thoughts, email me at or call 810-235-1970.

Posted here by
Terry Bankert

You are invited to join me at Face Book to continue this conversation.

Sphere: Related Content