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Governor Snyder rolls out plan to reform local government

Governor Rick Snyder has outlined a plan to withhold some state aid to local governments unless they make plans to consolidate services and make their finances more open. The governor says he wants to create new incentives for communities to save money and become more efficient.

He would revamp how the state shares tax revenues with cities and townships to reward those that come up with cost-savings. 

“Almost every community can find something useful about being more efficient by working together with others. And that’s really the motivation here – to be creative, entrepreneurial and pro-active and to share those thoughts and have all of us succeed together.”

Governor Snyder has also called for labor negotiation and pension reforms that could prove to be controversial. Every community would also be required to post an online “dashboard” that outlines a town’s finances and economic performance.  

Snyder says his plan would save Michigan taxpayers $100 million dollars up front, with more savings as efficiency and local consolidation plans are enacted. 

He unveiled his proposal in Grand Rapids, where local officials are debating a plan to create a regional government with shared police, fire and other services.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987.
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