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Monday, January 17, 2011

Troy Citizens United lied, cheated and misrepresented facts on their way to a victory over saving our library last November. And now?

... They are poor itty, bitty victims who just wuv our library.
Yeah, right.
They're upset because the city sent the Kempen Initiative off to a judge before acting further on it. As I've written, if you read the Kempen initiative, it said nothing. A one-sentence bit of nonsense that says the city must keep open a library. What was the poorly researched, written and planned sentence?
"In order to assure access to quality local library service, the City of Troy shall operate and maintain a public library open to the public for not less than 55 hours each week."
I asked a gentleman who was holding this petition why the petition was impossibly vague, nonbinding and didn't mention funding and didn't even mention the library by name -- it says "a library" not the library at this address or the Troy Public Library. He said, "Well, you can't make it idiot proof." Nope, not when an idiot apparently wrote it.
I think the city IS acting in good faith. They could easily open a broom closet at the community center and put 10 books at it and say Voila - a library!
A full-service library is another question. With what money? Shall we cut employee salaries or benefits and be sued by the State of Michigan? I know, they want to dump our cops and outsource to the Oakland County Sheriff, right? Remember the joke that this petition promised to Keep Our Library with No New Taxes, then the Monday after the election Howrylak told the Free Press he wouldn't be "adverse" [sic] to considering a half-mill increase.
Where's the money, Howrylak and Kempen? Don't be so sly. You must know. You keep saying it's there. Then where?
In the piece Deb DeBacker says "we would like to save the library." Yet her organization put those 3 fake proposals on the ballot to kill Proposal 1. They don't want to save the library, they want toy with it.
Howylak, the TCU darling lied and said we would have to buy all new books and computers and a building. If they cared about saving the library, they would have supported the only proposal that WOULD have saved the library.
What also amazes me is that whenever TCU so much as sneezes, The Oakland Press runs out to cover it! And look, TCU always gets the last word.

Get your tissues ready for this Oakland Press piece. Those poor victims at the TCU - boo hoo hoo
Troy Citizens United: City violated charter with library petition

Saturday, January 15, 2011
The grassroots group Troy Citizens United (TCU) says the Troy city attorney and City Council have violated the city charter by not acting on a petition signed by 2,560 residents calling for the city to fund and operate a city library.
The library is scheduled to close July 1 because of a financial gap in the city’s general fund.

The petition, submitted by Troy resident Edward Kempen on behalf of Friends of the Library with no New Taxes, says, “In order to assure access to quality local library service, the City of Troy shall operate and maintain a public library open to the public for not less than 55 hours each week.”

The petition was submitted to the Troy city clerk on Nov. 9 after voters rejected four requests to operate an independent library to be funded by a separate millage and run by an elected board of trustees. It was verified by the city clerk on Dec. 3 and presented to the City Council on Dec. 6.

According to the City Charter, the council had 30 days — until Jan. 4 — to approve the petition or bring the issue to voters within 180 days.

However, the City Council voted 6-1 on Nov. 22 to have City Attorney Lori Grigg Bluhm seek clarification on how to proceed with the petition in Oakland County Circuit Court.

“Deliberation and decision on defendant’s initiative petition has the potential for far-reaching financial and legal ramifications and therefore requires, at a minimum, a comprehensive analysis ... Due to the complexity of this issue, and the lack of precedent, Troy requests an extension of time to allow full exploration of the issues,” the complaint reads.

“However, Troy council members, in spite of constitutional and legal requirements at the federal, state and local level, and their oath of office to uphold these laws, are denying 2,560 petitioners this right. Instead, council has launched a heavy-handed lawsuit using the city’s taxpayer-funded Law Department to intimidate and financially burden the individual who brought the petition, Ed Kempen.

“Presumably this is a threat that we are all supposed to learn from — to never try to exercise this right.”
read more here


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. From the person too afraid to use their real name.

  3. Stay out of the kitchen if you cant take the heat... Anonymous posting is allowed on this blog. Turn it off if you don't like it.

    Definitely NOT afraid (are you suggesting I should be?) ..

    Cheers... Anonymous.

  4. The Oakland Press is totally biased in its reporting. You will never get anything but a very, very right wing slant. Also, the crocodile tears of the TCU would be amusing if what they had done wasn't so tragic. Also, why are so many using this to launch political careers if their intent is to destroy Government and Government employees.

  5. This petition was a like a germ in the community that took hold and there is no antibiotic strong enough to fight it. I fail to understand how this was ok on any level to bring this forward with such irresponsible and vague language. And, seriously, I have tried to understand. I'm not close-minded in all this. But ... I'm left scratching my head. Thank God the City Attorney sought clarification; she would not have been doing her job if she had not. *sigh.

  6. Did you read about the boy from Utah that created a new app? He did all his research at his local public library. Our kids are going to be at such a disadvantage. Thanks TCU! Maybe your own lives would be in better shape if you took the time to read, learn and better yourself.

  7. Pro-TCU Anonymous...
    Just be thankful to me that I let you voice your opinion here. Those at TCU don't allow my voice on their site, and they also don't say who they are. What a bunch of 'fraidy cats. :-D
    You're welcome...

  8. Per "DARBS" comment in the Oakland Press:
    " When are the voices & voters of Troy going to realize that Kempen et. al. are using the petition process to try to manipulate control of the council & city management? First they slipped in the ballot language in 2008. They then come up with copy cat ballot language on the library. When it appeared that Proposal 1 had a good chance of winning, they then came up with a petition to confuse voters just prior to the election with a mandate for the impossible - operating the library with no additional funds. That in combination with Mr. Howrylak's letter brought Proposal 1 down by only 677 votes.

    In my view, it would be irresponsible of the City of Troy to just accept Kempen's petition without legal interpretation. To me, it risks creating a legal mandate that would put the city operations in financial jeapordy due to insufficient funds. There exist a wide variety of legal mandates for services and contracts. Are they trying to force this situation to gain better position for the 2011 city council election? Force bankruptcy to evade contract obligations? I certainly want this petition to be studied under a legal magnifying glass so that sound decisions can be made for the future of Troy.
    In spite of the fact that Troy has the lowest tax rate of any full service city in Michigan in combination with a full spectrum of awards for effective operation, we are repeatedly getting the national Citizens United & Tea Party doctrine shoved down our throats. These actions are damaging the stability and property values in our city. It is time for those who believe in Troy's city government to stand up for The City of Troy in the name of TRUTH! "

  9. if your solution is to ask for more taxes?? Confusion causes negative reactions..Till someone put this problem daily into people minds and explain to the people in Troy where the money went and a clear way of showing people who gets money,the negative feelings towards vote-ing their selves tax increases seems very dim.

  10. Nice work, Sharon. Not sure how you deal with it. Are you an elementary school teacher by any chance?