Community Benefits Movement and Lansing Watch Updates
Last November Detroiters voted for Proposal B and, while not legally binding like Proposal A would have been, Detroit has become the first city in the nation with a city-wide Community Benefit Ordinance.
Proposal A would have created a mandatory process, triggered for any proposed development above $15 Million dollars, between developers and community members ending in a legally enforceable agreement between the parties. Proposal B is a community benefits ordinance in name only. Proposal B, triggered at proposed developments above $75 Million dollars, contained no required outcome of a legally binding agreement or true engagement.
Backed by corporate interest, opponents of Proposal A spent what is believed to be upwards of $1.5 Million dollars on a campaign based on manufactured economic fears. Those opposed to Proposal A also succeeded in alienating us from some of our traditional allies and trade and labor groups.
Despite this on November 8th, close to 100,000 Detroit Voters came out in support of Proposal A (46% total yes votes), and more than 114,000 Detroit Voters came out in support of Proposal B. Detroit voters clearly stated their desire for some kind of community benefits ordinance.
Detroiters deserve accountability, inclusion & transparency around changes in our infrastructure and development projects in our communities. We will continue to organize and fight for strong community benefits.
The end of the year session, between the November election and the holiday break, or lame duck session, is a period where legislators attempt to push through bills quickly.
Last year during lame duck, the so-called “Transformational” Brownfields Plan bills died in committee.
“This legislation would allow a business that creates jobs to keep the taxes it withholds from employees’ paychecks. The taxes employees pay to fund government services like roads, schools, public safety and social services would be diverted directly into their employer’s pocket.”
Platform members and supporters shared these bills with friends, family and community across Michigan and made calls to Lansing.