Former Flint EM orders police and fire millage for Nov. ballot - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Former Flint EM orders police and fire millage for Nov. ballot

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(08/09/12) - Mike Brown signed a number of 11th hour executive orders and resolutions Wednesday.

Included is one putting a police and fire millage on the November ballot.

City leaders need support from those on the front lines fighting crime and fire in Flint.

They have it from at least one public safety union leader.

"I know we need it," says Trent Farnsworth, president of the Flint Firefighters Union.

But Farnsworth would like the ballot language to designate Flint firefighters and officers would offer the services the money would fund.

The resolution, signed by Mike Brown as emergency manager, states only all revenues would go solely for the purpose of police and fire protection.

"If they were to consolidate us and lay off people, now they're going to fund another endeavor like the city lockup? If they designate money to the city lockup, it's the county receiving the funds," Farnsworth says.

Police and firefighter jobs are typically some of the first to go in tough budget times.

That's been the case in Flint even as the city is considered one of the most violent in the country.

Brown's proposal calls for six mills, that's $6 per $1,000 of taxable property, for five years.

Brown estimates the first year could bring in more than $5.3 million.

The head of the Flint Police Officers Association declined comment at this time.

"I'm behind it," says Flint Mayor Dayne Walling. "Now it's up to the community to make a decision, can we afford it?"

Walling has previously pushed for a jail millage.

It failed in May of 2011.

Voters then did renew one to fund police jobs.

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