MARINE CITY, Michigan - Michigan Municipal League CEO Dan Gilmartin explained that nothing is impossible with the current Michigan Legislature as shown in the recent agreement to tax pensions. “No one saw that one coming,” Gilmartin told about 30 League members during the Region 5 Education Seminar in Michigan’s eastcoast port city, Marine City, Wednesday, May 18 2011.

Gilmartin explained that things are chaotic in Lansing right now, but he sees this time as an opportunity for change in ways that can benefit Michigan’s cities, villages and urban townships.

“The state is chaotic, local government is good and the future is bright. Despite all the chaos in Lansing I do feel we are moving ourselves forward.”

Gilmartin was the first of several speakers planned for the day-long regional meeting that is part of the League’s 2011 “MML Tour”.

Other planned speakers were Keith Creagh, director of agriculture for Michigan; League Board President and Alpena Mayor Carol Shafto; Marine City Manager John Gabor; Tony Minghine, associate executive director for the League; and Summer Minnick, director of state affairs for the League. The event is among seven regional meeting the League is doing throughout the state as part of our 2011 MML Tour: tour.mml.org. Also later today the meeting attendees will select the Region 5 Community Excellence Award winner, so stay tuned.

The MML Tour culminates in October with the 2011 League Convention. Follow the tour on Twitter at #mmltour. The Regional Meetings give Michigan Municipal League members a chance to hear from League staff and state officials about the latest municipal-related legislation in Lansing and ways communities are becoming the types of areas where people want to live, work and play. Other tour stops have been in Kalkaska, Hamtramck and Ludington. View blog posts from every regional meeting here. The League is still accepting registrations from members for upcoming regional meetings: East Lansing (May 20), Houghton (May 26-27) and Saginaw (June 1). View the full regional schedule here.

Thanks again to all those who have attended so far and for those of you planning to attend! We hope to see you—as well as those who weren’t able to attend the Region Seminar—at Convention Oct. 4-7 in Grand Rapids. Find out more about the MML Tour here: http://www.mml.org/events/regional/index.html.

Matt Bach is director of communications for the Michigan Municipal League. He can be reached at (734) 6696317 or mbach@mml.org.

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