While the State Board of Canvassers today certified that there are enough valid petition signatures to ask for a vote on a statutory education spending mandate, the coalition opposed to the proposal announced it has tripled in size. The Coalition to Stop the K-16 Spending Mandate, first formed in February with 15 organizations, has now grown to include 45 statewide organizations including taxpayer, local government, law enforcement, healthcare, and human service organizations. At the same time, the K-16 Coalition for Michigan's Future is shrinking due to lack of support.
"It is clear to Michigan State Police Troopers that this proposal is bad public policy and is wrong for Michigan," said Matt Wesaw, Government Affairs Director of the Michigan State Troopers Association of Michigan. "The Troopers joined the Coalition to Stop the K-16 Spending Mandate because if this proposal passes citizens could see drastic cuts in state funding of law enforcement and other critical services," added Wesaw.
The Michigan Education Association is leading an effort to provide a guaranteed spending mandate for K-12 public schools, community colleges, and state public universities. The non-partisan House Fiscal Agency has estimated that this proposal would cost state government approximately $1.1 billion above current spending on education -- in the first year alone.
If the Legislature approves the proposal, it becomes law. If the Legislature rejects the proposal over the next 40 days, the proposal will go before voters on the November 2006 ballot. The Coalition to Stop the K-16 Spending Mandate is urging the Legislature and voters to reject the spending mandate, and for educators to drop their support for the spending mandate.
"Our polling shows that once people understand the extraordinary cost of this spending mandate, the threats to critical services and their wallets, support plummets," said Bill Martin, CEO for the Michigan Association of Realtors. "It would be irresponsible to put this spending on auto-pilot with no accountability to taxpayers. This plan would have a negative impact on Michigan's economy and should be rejected."
"The number and range of groups who are opposed to this plan says a lot about how devastating this proposal would be," added Wesaw. "This coalition is committed to defeating this ill-conceived plan," concluded Wesaw.
The Coalition to Stop the K-16 Spending Mandate today announced it has hired Marketing Resource Group, a Lansing-based firm with a 100 percent track record of defeating this type of proposal, to provide campaign and coalition services.
For more information on the K-16 spending proposal, visit the Web site of the Coalition to Stop the K-16 Spending Mandate at http://www.stopthespendingmandate.com/ .
Members Of the Coalition to Stop the K-16 Spending Mandate (AS OF 6/05/06) Ann Arbor Area Chamber of Commerce Brandt Coultas, (734) 214-0101 Conference of Western Wayne Helen Foster, (734) 953-8834 Concerned Taxpayers Group of Livingston County Bill Johnston, (517) 546-4642 Detroit Regional Chamber Sarah Hubbard, (517) 372-2278 Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce Jared Rodriguez, (616) 771-0359 Health Care Association of Michigan Kim Ringlever, (517) 627-1561 Kalamazoo County Taxpayers Association Isaac Morehouse, (269) 778-9177 Kalamazoo Regional Chamber of Commerce Marty Dodge, (269) 381-4000 Life Insurance Association of Michigan Larry Kish, (517) 482-7058 Michigan Association of Chiefs of Police Chief Ervin Portis (517) 788-4127 MI Assoc of Community Mental Health Boards Scott Dzurka, (517) 374-6848 Michigan Association of Counties Tom Hickson, (517) 372-5374 Michigan Association of Fire Chiefs Dan Hagen, (989) 213-6641 Michigan Association of Health Plans Christine Shearer, (517) 371-3181 Michigan Association of Home Builders Dawn Crandall, (517) 322-0224 Michigan Association for Local Public Health Mark Bertler, 485-0660 Michigan Association of Police Organizations Richard Weiler, (248) 524-3200 Michigan Association of REALTORS® Bill Martin, (517) 372-8890 Michigan Business & Professional Association Bonnie Bochniak, (517) 374-9128 Michigan Chamber of Commerce Tricia Kinley, (517) 371-7669 Michigan County Social Services Association Mel Hagan, (517) 371-5303 The Michigan Food & Beverage Association Bonnie Bochniak, (517) 374-9128 Michigan Grocers Association Linda Gobler, (517) 372-6800 Michigan Health & Hospital Association David Finkbeiner, (517) 703-8601 Michigan Licensed Beverage Association Lance Binoniemi, (517) 374-9611 Michigan Catholic Conference Paul Long, (517) 372-9310 Michigan Distributors And Vendors Association Polly Reber, (517) 372-2323 Michigan Municipal League Arnold Weinfeld, (517) 485-1314 Michigan Oil And Gas Association Frank Mortl, (517) 487-1092 Michigan Osteopathic Association Doug Borruso, (517) 347-1555 Michigan Railroads Association Robert Chaprnka, 482-9413 Michigan Restaurant Association Andy Deloney, (517) 377-3931 Michigan Retailers Association Eric Rule, (517) 372-5656 Michigan Soft Drink Association Bill Lobenherz, (517) 371-4499 Michigan State Police Command Officers Association Diane Garrison, (517) 974-2266 Michigan State Police Troopers Association Matt Wesaw, (517) 336-7782 Michigan State Police Troopers Association Retirees Matt Wesaw, (517) 336-7782 Michigan Townships Association David Bertram, (517) 321-6467 Midland Area Chamber of Commerce Sid Allen, (989) 839-9522 Mt. Pleasant Area Chamber of Commerce Jim Kostrava, (989) 772-2396 Plymouth Community Chamber of Commerce Fran Toney, (734) 453-1540 Police Officers Association of Michigan Ken Grabowksi, (313) 937-9000 Prosecuting Attorney's Association of Michigan KC Steckelberg, 334-6060 Small Business Association of Michigan Paul Bukowski, (517) 482-8788 Wayne County Taxpayers Association Rose Bogaert, (313) 278-8383
Paid for by the Coalition to Stop the K-16 Spending Mandate with regulated funds, 600 S. Walnut St., Lansing, MI 48933. Contributions not eligible for charitable deductions on federal tax returns.
SOURCE: Coalition to Stop the K-16 Spending Mandate
CONTACT: Dave Doyle of Marketing Resource Group, +1-517-372-4400, for
Coalition to Stop the K-16 Spending Mandate
Web site: http://www.stopthespendingmandate.com/