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  1. #1
    Forum Member Box2565's Avatar
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    Default Michigan Governor Vetoes Firefighter Funding

    The message below is an email that I received yesterday. Rather surprising that this would happen.


    Michigan Governor Vetoes Firefighter Funding

    Move Jeopardizes Public Safety

    EAST LANSING, Mich., Oct. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- While the rest of the nation
    is dipping into their own pocket books to support firefighters across
    the country, Governor John Engler stunned municipal leaders and
    firefighters across the state by vetoing two appropriations that pay for
    fire protection for state facilities.

    The Governor's move jeopardizes public university students, state
    employees, and anyone attending a public event or activity on state
    property, including this weekend's "Cold War," the Michigan State
    University/University of Michigan hockey game being played at Spartan
    Stadium in East Lansing this Saturday.

    "The Governor's veto is a slap in the face of every firefighter in the
    state," said Mark Meadows, Mayor of East Lansing. "It's an
    unconscionable act that makes absolutely no sense."

    In light of the heightened awareness and concern for public safety,
    Meadows pointed out that the only terrorist attack in the State of
    Michigan occurred at Michigan State University on New Year's Eve, 1999,
    when Agriculture Hall was firebombed.

    The state is required by law (PA 289) to provide funding in lieu of
    taxes to local communities that provide fire protection to state
    facilities within their jurisdictions. The Governor's veto means that
    communities across Michigan will lose all of their state funding to
    provide fire protection for state facilities, dramatically compromising
    emergency readiness in the event of a fire or other disaster and
    endangering those who live in one of the more than 70 public university
    dormitories without sprinkler systems.

    "More than 40 communities across the state provide fire protection to
    state facilities," said Don Stypula, spokesman for the Michigan
    Municipal League. "It is irresponsible for the Governor to shove these
    municipalities against a financial brick wall."

    Cutting funding could affect emergency readiness in a number of ways:


    * laying off firefighters at a time when they are desperately needed;


    * delaying much-needed equipment purchases and/or maintenance;

    * eliminating critical special training to help protect the community;
    and

    * jeopardizing the Urban Search and Rescue teams in Michigan.

    In MSU's case, the City of East Lansing could be forced to lay off up to
    20 firefighters and close MSU's fire station.

    "Firefighters are the backbone of any successful search and rescue
    operation," said Meadows. "We urge lawmakers to take whatever action
    necessary to fund these critical services."

    MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT - Click Here
    http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X42735351

    10/01/2001 17:02 EDT http://www.prnewswire.com



  2. #2
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    Why did he cut the funding?
    Bryan Beall
    Silver City, Oklahoma USA

  3. #3
    Forum Member Box2565's Avatar
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    I don't really know. My guess is that he is "saving" the taxpayers money.

  4. #4
    Forum Member DeputyChiefGonzo's Avatar
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    Pennywise and dollar foolish. Governor Engler must be suffering from recto-cranial inversion if he hasn't taken note of the events of 9/11/2001.

    In the event of any incident at state owned property, the first to be called and the last ones to leave will be firefighters. Maybe the firefighters of Michigan should rethink their responses to state owned facilities...take care of life hazards first..than alter their firefighting tactics to what's safest for them. It's obvious that Governor Engler is willing to play "Russian roulette" and write off any and all state buildings. Of course, to pay to rebuild a state facility would far exceed the cost of the fire protection in the first place! Pennywise, dollar foolish...damn, I'm repeating myself!
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
    Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

  5. #5
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    What do you expect. Our governor's a panzy anyway.

    (substitute panzy with anyword of your choice. I thought it was unwise to say what i really think of him. )

  6. #6
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    I fully agree that the Governor sounds like he is a prime canidate for a *cranialrectumdectomy* *slipping on gloves* anybody care to assist????????
    Just Me

  7. #7
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    Let me tell you our story.
    My department is responsibile for coverage of Saginaw Valley State University. They have a enrollment of 8000 plus students. 1500 students live on campus. We have approx. 3800 residents. There are 18 firefighters. As of 10/1/01 we repsonded to 120 incidents. 22 incidents were at the university. Our check for the year, from the state is $3000.00 and some change. I am surprized to get any thing at all. Do we deserve more? YES Our neighbor has a state prision to coverage. Do they deserve more? YES. My biggest problem is with the university is they have no problem building a multi-million dollar building evey other year. Do you think they could back to the community that they drain.

    This is my opinion.
    Chief-3

  8. #8
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    I am ashamed to admit I'm from Michigan at this moment. I wonder how he'd feel if he was at an event at a "state-owned" facility and there was a problem. What would he do if no FD showed up? "Sorry Guv, truck broke down on the way..."
    Pepper

  9. #9
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    NOT SUPRISING AS A FORMER RESIDENT OF MICHIGAN IT IS AMAZING HOW LOW THEY ARE WILLING TO SINK TO DESTROY FIRE DEPARTMENTS AND FIREFIGHTERS. THIS IS NOT THE FIRST TIME AND IT WILL NOT BE THE LAST. PATHETIC SUITS
    YES I AM A PROFESSIONAL FIRE FIGHTER AND YES I AM IN THE UNION

  10. #10
    Senior Member hctrouble25's Avatar
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    It took the attack on 9-11-01 to make most of the country sit up and take notice of those that provide emergency services...obviously not everyone was paying attention. Don't worry when the Governor's mansion burns down one night with his cat fluffy inside he will change his tune...so sad that it takes a death in their life to make some people see that we place ourselves in front of death every time we respond to a call...he will learn. Unfortunately the rest of that state will suffer because he is too blind to see what is really going on out there. Good luck to all you MI residents. Stay safe out there.
    Never forget those who went before and sacrified to make us better and stronger as a fire service and a nation. 09-11-01 forever etched in time and our memories. God Speed Boys!

  11. #11
    Senior Member Dalmatian90's Avatar
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    I first felt I'd have to do a "Me to" reply to this...after all, one of my rallying cries against the FIRE Act is that State's bear a responsibility, especially for their own facilities.

    But something also didn't sound right, since I haven't seen "PR Newswire" before. Unlike wires like Reuters or AP where reporters and/or news organizations put up their articles, PR Newswire is a self-posting site. In this case, the above article was posted by the City of East Lansing itself. Knowing East Lansing is near (home of?) Michigan State, little red flags went up saying they're probably a big beneficiary.

    A quick net search for Lansing Newspapers brought up the Lansing State Journal and this article http://www.lsj.com/news/local/011003fire1b_2b.html

    Engler vetoed $9.4 million in fire protection grants for the fiscal year that began on Monday. The grants would have included about $1.2 million for Michigan State University and $750,000 for Lansing.

    Engler said the 25 percent increase from a year earlier was unjustified given the tight state budget. Budget spokeswoman Kelly Chesney said Engler would support funding at last year's level of $7.4 million.


    The grant program pays for fire protection for such buildings as state offices, universities and prisons.


    "For a community like East Lansing, that represents about one-fifth of our budget," said East Lansing Fire Chief Randall Talifarro. "With recent events in Washington, D.C., and New York City, you can understand the awesome responsibility that comes with providing fire protection for federal and state buildings.''


    Bottom line in most things financial: You'd better have some good, sound reasoning and line up support in advance for 25% budget increases. 3%, even 4 or 5% would probably go "under the radar" or at least receive minimal opposition. 25% sticks out like a sore thumb, and now the municipalities are stuck waiting for a new appropriation bill that leaves them level funded. It may very well be deserved and needed, but it takes patience and persistence to get such funding through.

    Matt
    IACOJ Canine Officer
    20/50

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