August 22, 2013


MI: Governor to Free Pontiac, Mich., from Emergency Financial Management. Gov. Rick Snyder announced Monday that the financial emergency in Pontiac was over and that the city no longer needed to be run by an emergency manager….. Under Schimmel’s leadership, city expenses were slashed, the city’s police and fire services have been contracted out and golf courses have been sold. Effective Monday, the city’s mayor and council were to assume their former roles.  Governing

TX: State report finds Houston charter school misspent $5.3 million in federal funds. A Houston charter school misspent $5.3 million in federal funds on items ranging from first-class airline tickets to spa services, according to a state report released Tuesday. Dallas Morning News

IL: Alderman: If Midway privatization plan flies, neighbors could be hurt. An influential alderman raised red flags Wednesday about the privatization of Midway Airport, spelling political trouble for Mayor Rahm Emanuel if the project is cleared for takeoff. Aviation Committee Chairman Michael Zalewski (23rd), whose ward includes Midway, said he’s concerned that a private contractor would attempt to shoehorn more late-night flights into the airport. hat could make life miserable for noise-weary Southwest Side residents, particularly those whose homes don’t qualify for soundproofing at city expense.  Chicago Sun-Times

FL: Lawmakers discuss spike in child deaths. DCF has struggled to oversee its contractors since Florida became the first state to fully privatize its child welfare programs in 2005, inking multimillion-dollar contracts with 20 child welfare contractors that care for the more than 17,000 foster children in the system. Wilkins attempted to add more penalties for poor performance to the contracts, but the contractors pushed back, saying he was overstepping his role. “The (contractors) have taken over without anybody managing them and so the department is doing its job in the dark,” Talenfeld said. “The only way this privatized system can work is if somebody is in charge.” Most advocates agreed the privatized system has produced better outcomes, but some suggested an ombudsmen or independent monitor.