Proposal 1 failure puts focus on lawmakers

Published 8:00 am Friday, May 8, 2015

Michigan voters sent a clear message to legislators on Tuesday when they overwhelmingly nixed the complicated Proposal 1. Now it is up to lawmakers to do their jobs by finding viable solutions to fund education and infrastructure improvements across the state.

Lots of finger pointing and second guessing could be done as to why citizens spoke out so decisively — to the tune of about 4 to 1 — against the statewide measure. Final totals showed that 1.4 million citizens voted against the proposal with only about 350,000 voting in favor of it. The defeat was the most lopsided margin ever for a proposed amendment to the state constitution, according to the Detroit Free Press.

In the end, the only thing that really matters is that the problems of deteriorating roads and bridges, along with ever diminishing funds for public education, remain as critical as ever.

Here in Cass and Berrien counties, the public schools continue to face significant financial obstacles to provide the level of education our children deserve. And it doesn’t take long driving through southwest Michigan to see that our roads have felt the impact of several harsh winters and years worth of Band-Aid solutions.

Our lawmakers shouldn’t pass the buck back to citizens this time and instead should work toward bi-partisan solutions.

It certainly won’t be easy and tough decisions will have to be made, but that is what these men and women were elected to do. Agencies are going to lose funding. Programs are going to be cut. Sacrifices are going to have to be mad.

There isn’t any magic one-size-fits-all solution.

Michigan citizens want to see clearly defined proposals that show our government is focused on these priorities by working to improve efficiency and eliminating wasteful spending.

You are on the clock Lansing.


Opinions expressed are those of the editorial board consisting of Publisher Michael Caldwell and editors Ambrosia Neldon, Craig Haupert, Ted Yoakum and Scott Novak.