LANSING, Mich. (WXYZ) - Governor Rick Snyder has signed a bill giving broad new powers to emergency financial managers.
The managers are appointed by the state of Michigan to run struggling cities and schools, and are granted the ability to terminate union contracts.
The bill was signed as thousands of union protesters rallied inside and outside the Capitol in protest. Vulnerable cities like Ecorse, Highland Park and Pontiac could get Emergency Financial Managers. Hamtramck is once again in danger as well.
In Hamtramck, City Manager Bill Cooper’s position was created out of the financial crisis. The city fell in to receivership but emerged five years ago. He says the city fell into debt when the emergency manager was present and says they are still digging out from under it.
“The Emergency Manager does the short-term fixes and leaves. A lot of them don't look five or ten years down the road.”
65 people have been trained as Emergency Managers and Cooper says the state is preparing to train 150 more.