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E-M:/ Proposal for a Part Time Legislature

Dear Shirley, Dana, and the rest,

The proposal to mandate a part time legislature is one of those Alice-in-Wonderland ideas where up is down.
First, clearly Michigan faces a crisis that goes beyond dollars and sense to include leadership and vision.
If anyone thinks cutting taxes will solve Michigan's problems, you need to go hang out with Betsy DeVos who sits in a multi-million dollar mansion criticizing Michigan workers for making too much money.

What Michigan needs, in my opinion, is an informed, representative legislature that has the experience and resources to tackle ecological, economic and human challenges before us.

We pay our legislators well to enable ordinary people to represent us, not just the rich and powerful.
If the only people who can run for public office are the rich, then the vast majority of Michiganders are truly buggered, to use the English term for it. 

Moreover, in this time of ecological crisis, no one regardless of their income or wealth, is going to survive unless the community pulls together, to work together with nature and each other.

I propose that we eliminate term limits so that we can have elected representatives with the experience necessary to actual debate and resolve the problems before us. Right now, term limits empowers mainly lobbyists who represent the collective memory in Lansing.

I propose that we continue to pay our representatives enough money to enable ordinary people to serve.
And I propose we realize that a return to the 13th Century with the rich hiding in their gated community castles, hoping the serfs in the surrounding land don't organize to take them down is the surest way to destroy our state and our society.

My thoughts on Christmas morning before everyone awakes.

Chris Bedford

Chris Bedford
Center for Economic Security
#6543 Hancock Road
Montague, MI 49437
231-670-4817 (cell)

The Center for Economic Security produces programs, media, and campaigns to build ecological understanding among consumers and to promote ecological intelligence in private and public decisionmaking. 

On Dec 25, 2007, at 9:04 AM, dana wrote:

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Saturday, December 22, 2007 10:10 PM
Subject: Fw: Michigan legislature

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Saturday, December 22, 2007 8:20 PM
Subject: Fw: Michigan legislature

Subject: Michigan legislature


Sounds like a very good idea to me!  Me too...

According  to an article in the 'Detroit Free Press'  (Nov. 14, 2007),
 editorial section, page 10 A, attorney and business owner, Henry 
Woloson,  from Clarkston, MI, is heading a movement to place a proposal on 
the 2008  ballot for a part-time legislature in Michigan.

Some facts he  provided:
1 - 46 states have part-time legislatures.
2 - Michigan has 148  full-time legislators.
3 - Michigan has  23% more legislators than California. We have a population 
of 10  million. California's is 36 million.
4 -  California is the only state in the  US that pays its lawmakers  more than 
5 - $115 million-plus is  allocated each year for the operation of the 
This does not  include lifetime health benefits for former legislators.

Under the new  proposal:
1 - Legislative sessions would be limited to 90 days between Jan.  1 and 
April 30 each year. 
2 - Special sessions could be ca lled - no  additional compensation.
3 - Elimination of lifetime benefits for  legislators.
4 - Freezing salaries pending later review.
5 - Downsizing  from 148 members to 100 members. (75 representative and 25 
6  - Estimated annual savings - more than $30 million.

Other current  considerations:
1 - Extending term limits to 12 years for voters who value  legislative 
2 - Having terms of both representative and  senators be 4 years with 1/2 of 
each group standing for election every 2  years.

'Michigan needs our state government to  become more productive and less 
expensive with greater accountability. We  hope concerned Michigan citizens 
will support our  efforts to let the voters decide if they wish to join the 
vast majority of  states effectively operating with a part-time legislature.'

Please  forward to  all that you t hink might be  interested.




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