Tuesday Night Massacre (with apologies to Richard Nixon) // Eliot Singer

Back around 2007, when I first realized there was something rotten in the City of East Lansing and started complaining about Staton’s arrogant unwillingness to deal with neighborhood problems, I had a conversation with an activist in the local Democratic Party who said, “Staton, Meadows, and McGinnty.” McGinnty was then city attorney, and Yeadon did the scut work of plea bargaining MIPs, etc. This was shortly after Meadows had left Council for State Representative (after Whitmer had moved on to Senate). The feeling was … Read more →

In-house city attorney // Eliot Singer

I’m going to write a couple of posts regarding the firing of Yeadon and resignations, from a historical perspective.

First, I want to review the financial argument for an in-house city attorney (city employee). When we did the petition drive, the primary motive was to get rid of the law firm that had had the contract for a long time, because of the many reasons that law firm had failed the public interest.

But we did also make the case that an in-house attorney would save … Read more →

Center City District bond and TIF update // Alice Dreger

There’s good financial news emerging on the Center City District project — the strict cost-control measures put in place by now-Mayor Ruth Beier and her colleagues on Council in 2017 turn out to be stricter than we had realized. In 2017, the TIF was effectively reduced by Council from a $56M cap to a $50M cap!

Combined with the new valuation method from tax assessor David Lee for big apartment buildings, this means that the Center City TIF will pay off years earlier than … Read more →

We Were Outgunned // Alice Dreger

What happened at the BRA yesterday?  ELi has my report up , but I would sum it up this way:

We were outgunned. And we were paying for the other side’s weapons.

What my reporting team saw yesterday is what we see at so many meetings. People representing our side – in this case, BRA members Jim Croom, Jeff Smith, and Aaron Stephens – ask really reasonable questions and express reasonable skepticism. 

But then, in the end, they vote “yes” without adequate protections for us. In the fog of … Read more →

Will the Chappelle Indictment Change City Hall? // Alice Dreger

It’s painful that Jim Cuddeback, the founder of Public Response, is not alive to read  the news  that real estate developer Scott Chappelle has been indicted for tax and bank fraud. When it was impossible for citizen watchdogs to convince any local news organization to report the truth about Chappelle’s history, Public Response provided the space to educate the community.

Eliot Singer, above all, worked doggedly to track and expose what was really going on with the developer with whom the City was looking to partner … Read more →

Don Power Celebration of Life / Gordon Taylor

We lost Don Power on December 27, 2019.  His celebration of life will be at  the East Lansing Public Library, 950 Abbot Rd, on Sunday, March 15 at 10 am to 12:30 pm.  Guests are invited to share memories at 11 am.  For those who wish to donate, please consider the East Lansing Public Library or the Small Animal Emergency Clinic, MSU Veterinary Hospital,  736 Wilson Rd, East Lansing MI 48824-1314.

Always an advocate for the East Lansing Library, Don was instrumental in getting … Read more →

What Counts as Outside “The Boundaries of Normal Messing-Up”? // Alice Dreger

Historic District - Sunset Ln - Copyright Raymond Holt

As  reported at ELi today , City Council voted 3-2 on Tuesday night to finally end the excruciating process of considering changes to the Oakwood Historic District boundaries. 

As was expected when this process started in 2013, the DDA’s Evergreen Avenue properties were removed to allow for redevelopment in order to deal with the looming $5.4 million debt on them. I’m happy to say the boundary was moved only two properties farther north, leaving largely intact the district I bought into in 1998 with the purchase of our … Read more →

Oakwood Historic District Boundary // Alice Dreger

Oakwood Historic District Home

Because I am trying to fight City Hall to defend my rights as a person who intentionally bought a home in the Oakwood Historic District, I am no longer reporting on the subject for East Lansing Info. I am instead compiling information as a citizen.I’ve spent a great deal of time researching what we know, with the help of multiple citizens who have been involved in this procedural mess, and have produced the attached document. I want to make clear I am not blaming the … Read more →

A Letter From Mark Grebner // Matt Kazmierski

Mark Grebner Letter - front

Long-time local political activist and consultant, and Ingham County Commissioner – Mark Grebner – recently sent out a mailer regarding the upcoming City Council election in East Lansing. The snail-mail was sent to around 1,300 addresses in East Lansing. Since it had limited reach, I thought others might be interested in hearing what Mr. Grebner had to say.

Below is the text of his letter, and a PDF of the actual mailer is attached as well.

-Matt Kazmierski
Public Response administrator

———-

If you care what I think . … Read more →

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