At our monthly meeting on Tuesday (Oct 6), HVCLC delegates endorsed three candidates in the Jackson City elections this November:
• Martin Griffin for Mayor
• Melissa Morse in Ward 4
• Derek Dobies in Ward 6
Here is the process by which we came to these endorsements. We first emailed invitations to all eight candidates in this year’s Jackson City Council elections to fill out an on-line questionnaire if they wanted to seek our endorsement. The questionnaire had about 20 questions designed to assess how well aligned the candidates are with policies that help working people and our labor movement.
Three candidates responded to this invitation by filling out our questionnaire. The HVCLC’s Committee on Political Education (COPE) read these candidates’ answers and interviewed them in Jackson on the evening of Thursday, October 1st. Our COPE then made recommendations that were discussed and voted on at the HVCLC’s October 6th Delegates’ meeting. After considerable discussion, the COPE’s recommendations were approved.
We will be mailing Jackson City union members to inform them of our endorsements and the process by which we came to them. We’ll then follow up with phone-banking.
The HVCLC endorses the proposed millage increase in Scio Township to support the expansion of public transit there.
This millage is going to cost the average home-owning family about $4 per month, while helping those who are too young to drive, too old to drive, or disabled in ways that prevent them from driving. It will also help people who cannot afford a car, because they are elderly and living on a fixed income, or because they are among the growing share of working people trapped in jobs that pay poverty wages.
Even in a relatively rich county like Washtenaw, University of Michigan researchers have shown that 9 out of the 10 most common jobs – and 9 out of 10 projected to create the most new jobs over the next ten years – pay full-time workers less than $32,000. That’s not enough to meet a modest “basic needs” budget, as the United Ways of Michigan explain in their recent report.
Bottom line: more and more people need access to high quality public transit. As for those of us who don’t need bus service right now, we ought to help those who do. That’s how we build solidarity and a sense of community – something we really need to do again – in our county and our country.
Here is information about the expanded service that the increase will provide.