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League Capital Conference Photos, Presentations Now Available

clock April 16, 2013 08:29 by author Matt Bach


Greenville Councilmember Jeanne Cunliffe attends the 2013 League Capital Conference. View more photos here. Get all Capital Conference resources, including press releases and presentation powerpoints, here.

The 2013 Michigan Municipal League Capital Conference is over, but the education received, information learned and networking opportunities gained live on. Check out presentations from the Conference here and view all the images from the two-day conference here in this collection on the League's flickr page. Event highlights included general sessions and breakout sessions with Governor Rick Snyder; Polly Trottenberg, U.S. Under Secretary for the Department of Transportation Policy; Michigan Budget Director John Nixon; Michigan Sen. Roger Kahn; Michigan Sen. Gretchen Whitmer; Michigan Rep. Wayne Schmidt; and League staff members Samantha Harkins, Nikki Brown, John LaMacchia and Summer Minnick.

There were sessions on numerous topics including the Economic Vitality Incentive Program (EVIP); the personal property tax; term limits; the state budget; liquor control rules; the environment; town-gown partnerships; and many other issues. In addition, League President David Lossing told his personal story of donating his bone marrow to a stranger with luekemia and multiple League members signed up for the Michigan Blood Be The Match bone marrow donor program.

Also numerous awards were given including four outstanding service awards to Brian Donovan, East Grand Rapids city manager; Jaymes Vettraino, Rochester city manager; Patrick Sullivan, Northville city manager; and Kara Wood, Grand Rapids economic development director. The regional winners of the 2013 Community Excellent Awards were selected at regional roundtable meetings during the conference. The seven regional winners are Linden/Fenton/Holly from Region 1; St. Joseph in Region 2; Belding in Region 3; DeWitt in Region 4; Imlay City in Region 5; Rogers City in Region 6; and Ironwood in Region 7.

Did you get your photo taken at the 2013 MML Capital Conference? Find out in this collection on the League's flickr page. Get all Capital Conference resources, including press releases and presentation powerpoints, here.

Matt Bach is director of media relations for the Michigan Municipal League. He can be reached at (734) 669-6317 and mbach@mml.org.

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Governor Snyder kicks off 2013 MML Capital Conference

clock April 9, 2013 22:08 by author aweinfeld


Governor Rick Snyder speaks at the 2013 Michigan Municipal League Capital Conference.

LANSING, Michigan - Michigan Governor Rick Snyder opened the 2013 MML Capital Conference discussing the differences he has discovered in running state government as compared to private business.

Noting that unlike a business, whose bottom line is about profit, government is about service and carries with it a much broader array of issues to be addressed than any private sector entity.  In a usual refrain however, the governor also noted that while government is not a business, neither is it a funding mechansim.

From there the governor settled into familiar themes about how government needs to be closer to its customers. As he has previously stated, the governor told the crowd that they need to be continue to be more efficient, that he wants to do more together to provide more value to our mutual customers and that points of difference shouldn't get in the way.

As is his custom, the governor took questions. Regarding a question about language in appropriations bills penalizing local governments for settling contracts prior to the effective date of the new right to work law, the governor said that while he didn't advocate for the language, he said he needs to be cognizant of the fact that such language was a priority of House Republicans, with whom he must negoitate a final bill.

The governor was also asked about the lack of an increase in revenue sharing given the state has a $500 million surplus. To that, the governor said the constitutional portion has increased. Regarding legality of the essential services assessment of the new personal property tax legislation, he would be willing to look at it but has take into consideration other opinions he might seek from the Supreme Court. In regards to the EVIP program, he said that the goal is not to make locals lives more difficult.

The governor also said that he isn't interested in taking credit or blame and just wants to address problems together. He reiterated his mantra of "relentless positive action" but one has to wonder if the governor really understands that no amount of "rpa" can diminish the fact that the ability of local offiicials to serve their customers continues to be negatively impacted by a broken municipal finance system.

Without such recognition and a renewed state/local partnership to address this important issue, the governor just might find a growing number of well-run communities with urgent budget issues sooner rather than later.

Arnold Weinfeld is Director of Strategic Initiatives for the Michigan Municipal League. He can be reached at 517-908-0304 or by e-mail.

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Governor Rick Snyder to Speak at League's Capital Conference

clock March 25, 2013 14:57 by author Matt Bach


Governor Rick Snyder is to speak at the 2013 Michigan Municipal League Capital Conference.

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder will speak at the Welcoming Session during the Michigan Municipal League’s 2013 Capital Conference in Lansing, April 9-10. The governor will provide his administration's viewpoint on key policy issues confronting the state and local municipalities. We expect Governor Snyder to take questions from the audience so feel free to come and share what's on your mind.

The Governor is one of numerous top state and national officials coming to the 2013 Conference. Other speakers include U.S. Deputy Secretary of Transportation John D. Porcari; Mitch Bean, Great Lakes Economic Consulting, formerly served as the Director of the Michigan House Fiscal Agency; John E. Nixon, director of the Michigan Department of Technology and the State Budget Office; Senator Gretchen Whitmer, D-Lansing, is Senior Democratic Leader; Hiram Fitzgerald, associate provost for University Outreach and Engagement and a University Distinguished Professor in the Department of Psychology at Michigan State University; Debra Horner, a project manager with the University of Michigan Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy (CLOSUP) in the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy; Senator Roger Kahn, a Republican for the 32nd district, comprised of Saginaw and Gratiot counties; and Eric Lupher, Director of Local Affairs at the Citizens Research Council of Michigan.

The Conference is in just two weeks, but there's still time to register. Register today here.

Matt Bach is director of media relations for the Michigan Municipal League. He can be reached at mbach@mml.org and (734) 669-6317.

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MI-Place Partnership Initiative Focus at League Convention Session

clock September 7, 2012 11:18 by author Matt Bach



Governor Rick Snyder is challenging all Michigan stakeholders--state agencies, local governments, community planners, businesses, neighborhood associations and others--to focus on Placemaking as a key strategy for both economic and community development.

To that end, the state has started a new initiative and website:: the MI-Place Partnership Initiative (www.miplace.org). In this session at the Michigan Municipal League's 2012 Convention taking place October 3-5 on Mackinac Island attendees will learn how to plug-in to MI-Place resources that can help your community grow new jobs.

Check out the full Convention agenda and more detailed list of topics to be discussed, including a discussion on some of the controversial ballot issues that may appear on the November ballot, new laws regarding cell towers, how to secure grant funding for your community, how governments can address illegal drugs in their communities, collaborative innovation by Jeff DeGraff, walkable urbanism from Chris Leinberger, how to build resilient communities by Chuck Marohn, thinking global for local issues by Clarence Anthony, using art and creativity to drive our state forward by Jennifer Goulet, local finance issues and strategies, and community design and sustainability. Be sure to register by the end of the business day TODAY, Friday, Sept. 7, 2012, to get the early bird discount.

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How Green is our Government? Find Out at Michigan Municipal League Capital Conference

clock February 28, 2012 13:39 by author Matt Bach


Chris Kolb, President of the Michigan Environmental Council, will speak at the Michigan Municipal League Capital Conference March 21, 2012 in Lansing.

LANSING, Michigan - Since taking office in January of 2011, Gov. Rick Snyder has made sweeping changes designed to revitalize and re-energize Michigan’s economy. But how is Lansing doing on that vast landscape of legislation involving energy and the environment? Join the conversation with some of the state’s top experts, including Michigan Environmental Council President Chris Kolb and Valerie Brader, Senior Policy Advisor for the Executive Office of Rick Snyder.

The session, called "Eye on the Environment: How Green is Our Government?" will take place Wednesday morning (March 21, 2012) during the Michigan Municipal League's 2012 Capital Conference at the Lansing Center in Lansing. Also on the panel will be Jamie Clover Adams, director of policy and legislative affairs for the Department of Environmental Quality and session moderator will be Midland utilities director Noel Bush. Go here for details on other speakers planned for Capital Conference, go here to view the full agenda and go here to register.

Read additional posts about the 2012 Capital Conference here:
- Peter Anastor to Talk Brownfield Tax Credits at Michigan Municipal League Conference
Lt. Gov. Brian Calley to Discuss Personal Property Tax at Capital Conference
- Michigan Municipal League Launches Mobile App for Capital Conference
- Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett to Discuss Placemaking at Capital Conference
- Energy, Environment, Transportation Policy: What's Ahead? Find out at Capital Conference
- Capital Conference General Session To Have Transportation Focus

Matt Bach is director of communications for the Michigan Municipal League. He can be reached at mbach@mml.org and (734) 669-6317.

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