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Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Restoring the Revenue: Our Friend George speaks with WKAR TV Commentator Tim Skubic on State budget issues and the Senate in 2010

Listen to a video of our friend George discussing ways to restore the $1.2 billion in cuts to State Government. He has also declared his interest in running for State Senate District #4 in 2010.






This show has Kathy Barks Hoffman, Jack Spencer, Stephanie Cepak and Mr. Skubic participating in a lively discussion.
Click Here to listen to the video. Weekly Edition #3919 originally aired Nov. 6, 2009

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

What does it take to make a great City: Making plans for Detroit after election day and the questions that need to be answered..

REVELEATOR PROSPECTS
DEDICATED TO TRUTH, JUSTICE, AND THE AMERICAN WAY
EDITED AND PUBLISHED BY GEORGE CUSHINGBERRY, JR. FOR THE NORTHWEST DETROIT LEADERSHIP FUND

VOL 30 NUMBER 1 FALL 2009

WE ASKED CANDIDATES FROM THE CITY PRIMARY TO ANSWER THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS. WE MAILED THEM PRIORITY WITH A RETURN SELF ADDRESSED ENVELOPE ON OCTOBER 15, 2009. CANDIDATES WERE ASKED TO RETURN WRITTEN RESPONSES BY OCTOBER 22, 2009.

WE EMAILED AND CALLED ALL WE COULD FIND NUMBERS FOR ON OCTOBER 29, 2009

THE PANEL WHO DEVISED THE STRATEGY INCLUDED FORMER JOURNALIST, CITY AND SUBURBAN STATE LEGISLATORS, INDUSTRY EXECUTIVES, CLERGY, PROFESSIONALS, AND OTHER DETROITERS.

A LEGISLATOR IS A PERSON WHOM MAKES LAW. Both city council and charter commission are legislators. Since the charter of the city of Detroit covers all areas questioned we wanted to know how all of the candidates viewed the issues.
_________________________________________________
KUDO'S TO COUNCILWOMAN JOANN WATSON

SHE ANSWERED THE QUESTIONS ON TIME!

SET ONE
Crime

1. Should the city re-open its crime lab?

2. How do we ensure earnest crime stats and increase case closures?

3. How do we get more officers on the street, given limited resources?

4. What role should civilians have with DPD?

5. How do we combat this “anti-snitching” culture?

City Services

1. What core services should Detroit offer, given its plummeting census?

2. What should Detroit do to enhance customer service?

3. Public lighting, city airport, GDRRA 􀃆 what should happen with them?

4. Should any services be privatized, and if so, which?

5. How can we repopulate Detroit?

Taxation

1. What can/should Detroit do to lessen its real property tax rate & better compete?

2. Should the utility user’s tax be raised?

3. Should the city income tax rate be returned to 3 percent?

4. Is there still a purpose for the city corporate income tax?

5. Should Michigan embrace regional sales tax?

Education

1. Should the Mayor have control of DPS and if so, why?

2. Should the Mayor have chartering authority?

3. What role should charter schools have in city educational delivery?

4. Should Detroit Public Schools embrace school uniforms?

5. What should become of vacated school buildings?

Regionalism / Economic Development

1. How does Detroit diversify its economy?

2. Is there a place for a regional system of governance?

3. How do we attract chain grocery stores?

4. How do we close the racial divide?

SET TWO
1. What is the biggest issue the City Council is dealing with right now and how would you resolve this issue?

2. If you could do one thing to make the neighborhoods of Detroit a safe place for everyone to live, what would it be?

3. Where do you see Detroit’s role with regard to inter-modal transportations to the state of Michigan?

4. Would you be willing to consolidate services with local counties/municipalities to save revenues?

5. Is Detroit “green” enough and what should Detroit be doing to make the area greener?

6. How would you begin to strengthen relationships with surrounding communities and the rest of the state?

7. Will you be active in the Detroit Chamber of Commerce?

8. If there are future budget cuts, what will you do to protect and maintain public services?

SET THREE
1. There have been constant revelations of illegal activity around contracting in the city of Detroit – what would you recommend we do to protect integrity and cost control in contracting?

2. Michigan’s constitution is a unique document. It establishes means of cooperation between the various levels of government. What are they and what would you do to foster good relationships between city, county of Wayne, and the State Michigan.

3. Have you read the charters of city and county – what are areas of interest you recommend we pursue to strengthen the relationship between Detroit, and Wayne County?

4. Have you read the State law relative to local contracting? Have you read the municipal act which established the powers and duties of cities? What do you recommend we change at the state level on these laws?

5. The city currently has over 15 million dollars being held by the state because of the cities failure to turn in its audit financial report on time. What will you do to insure sound financial practices and efficient financial operations?

6. Wayne County established a parks mileage which set aside funds to improve Historic Fort Wayne. The funds have not been allocated because of the lack of agreement between city council and the county commission. What will you do to facilitate the restoration of Fort Wayne and other family recreation opportunities in the city?


COUNCILWOMAN JOANN WATSON'S ANSWERS



SET ONE
Crime

1. Should the city re-open its crime lab? Yes

2. How do we ensure earnest crime stats and increase case closures? By sampling the results for any potential errors or flaws every three to five cases until a level of proficiency has been achieved.

3. How do we get more officers on the street, given limited resources? Economic stimulus funds and drug forfeiture fund.

4. What role should civilians have with DPD?

5. How do we combat this “anti-snitching” culture? Education, marketing, media, events

City Services

1. What core services should Detroit offer, given its plummeting census? All services offered are 'core'; the city's census should be impacted by re-population as spelled out in the attached Marshall plan

2. What should Detroit do to enhance customer service? 311 does not work, I fought to defund it, and the Mayor re-established the budget. Citizens now call City council to resolve everything bad dogs to illegal dumping because the Mayor's executive staff are non-responsive and the calls go to voice mail. Council must stand together and demand appropriate management or no contracts approved!

3. Public lighting, city airport, GDRRA: what should happen with them? Public lighting should be a source of revenue generation and so should the airport. GDRRA should be dissolved in favor of citywide recycling.

4. Should any services be privatized, and if so, which? No services should be privatized. Privatization does not save money, it only costs precious jobs and galvanizes more blight and poverty as residents become jobless.

5. How can we repopulate Detroit? Access government-owned properties to families in need and families who live elsewhere for a dollar, with three-year waiver on property taxes; this will address vacant housing and neighborhood blight while adding income tax revenue. Also, please not re-population strategies outlined in Marshall plan I sponsored attached, as approved by council.




Taxation

1. What can/should Detroit do to lessen its real property tax rate & better compete? Petition the state legislature to reduce by fifty percent.

2. Should the utility user’s tax be raised? Yes

3. Should the city income tax rate be returned to 3 percent? Yes

4. Is there still a purpose for the city corporate income tax? No

5. Should Michigan embrace regional sales tax? Yes

Education

1. Should the Mayor have control of DPS and if so, why? No

2. Should the Mayor have chartering authority? No

3. What role should charter schools have in city educational delivery? All schools should be held accountable for the delivery of quality education.

4. Should Detroit Public Schools embrace school uniforms? Yes

5. What should become of vacated school buildings? Schools should meet with community and neighborhood groups regarding alternate uses so that the outcome is collaborative.

Regionalism / Economic Development

1. How does Detroit diversify its economy? Rapid transit, renewable energy (water, wind, solar), greening of Detroit, Urban Gardening et. Al. see Marshall Plan attached

2. Is there a place for a regional system of governance? On some issues, like transportation.

3. How do we attract chain grocery stores? By supporting grass roots community coalition efforts to won grocery stores, like a group which meets bi weekly with the owner of Sav-a-lot Store on Conner between Warren and Mack.

4. How do we close the racial divide? By re-building communities with special attention to arts, small businesses, quality schools, capital for entrepreneurs, and support for the integrity of community based, grass roots organizations that meet the needs of citizens.

SET TWO
1. What is the biggest issue the City Council is dealing with right now and how would you resolve this issue?

2. If you could do one thing to make the neighborhoods of Detroit a safe place for everyone to live, what would it be?

3. Where do you see Detroit’s role with regard to inter-modal transportations to the state of Michigan?

4. Would you be willing to consolidate services with local counties/municipalities to save revenues?

5. Is Detroit “green” enough and what should Detroit be doing to make the area greener?

6. How would you begin to strengthen relationships with surrounding communities and the rest of the state?

7. Will you be active in the Detroit Chamber of Commerce?

8. If there are future budget cuts, what will you do to protect and maintain public services?

SET THREE
1. There have been constant revelations of illegal activity around contracting in the city of Detroit – what would you recommend we do to protect integrity and cost control in contracting? Eliminate the pay to play culture by ordinance, policy and practice with tough enforcement and on-going scrutiny of the Auditor General.

2. Michigan’s constitution is a unique document. It establishes means of cooperation between the various levels of government. What are they and what would you do to foster good relationships between city, county of Wayne, and the State Michigan. I believe the State Constitution should become the subject of an all-day orientation between State Legislators, County and local legislators twice a year with hands-on training, and 'best practice' legislative remedies employed.

3. Have you read the charters of city and county – what are areas of interest you recommend we pursue to strengthen the relationship between Detroit, and Wayne County? Yes. I recommend the Wayne County commission and the Detroit City Council confer quarterly on legislative priorities and to establish an agenda amenable to all.

4. Have you read the State law relative to local contracting? Have you read the municipal act which established the powers and duties of cities? What do you recommend we change at the state level on these laws? Many times, as I have tried to un-do the abolition of residency by the State. I believe the State should repeal its ban on residency as a result of homeland security issues; and because the fiscal viability of our city is not healthy when uniformed employees are 40% of the budget and 60% of those uniformed employees are not city residents.

5. The city currently has over 15 million dollars being held by the state because of the cities failure to turn in its audit financial report on time. What will you do to insure sound financial practices and efficient financial operations? I have written a deficit reduction plan for the Mayor to address the chronic tardiness of the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report; and to recommend budget cuts at the top; with a special outreach to the Federal Government to address the city's deficit because of the unique history with the auto industry which the feds have bailed out.

6. Wayne County established a parks mileage which set aside funds to improve Historic Fort Wayne. The funds have not been allocated because of the lack of agreement between city council and the county commission. What will you do to facilitate the restoration of Fort Wayne and other family recreation opportunities in the city? Wayne County and The City of Detroit need to meet fact to face and hammer out a resolution to the restoration of Fort Wayne within the next 6 months; and the leaders of both enitites should be charged to execute the reality.





WE WILL KEEP ASKING THE QUESTIONS AFTER THE ELECTION !

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Restoring the Revenue: President Obama’s directive on Medical Marijuana and the financial impact on the State of Michigan.

By The Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.
October 24, 2009

The increasing number of patients and caregivers is creating the need for increased investment in technology and personnel management at the Departments of Community Health and Information Technology.





On Monday, October 19, 2009 President Obama issued a directive to all federal law enforcement agencies (DEA, FBI, US Customs, et al) to stop arresting Medical Marijuana patients in all States who have voter approved Medical Marijuana laws. The Drug Enforcement Agency will no longer harass or prosecute caregivers as long as they are complying with State of Michigan law and the 13 other states that have them on their books.



Local police agencies will have the ability to verify that you are a valid Michigan patient by checking the card number on their computer. If you do not have a card in your possession, law enforcement will be able to use your driver’s license to validate the fact that you are a legal medical marijuana patient. This directive includes all of the international border crossings in the cities of Detroit, Port Huron, and Sault Ste Marie.


Because of the leadership of President Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder will now lead his band of barristers to pursue other causes such as, violent crime in our schools, and executive fraud on Wall Street. This is an upheaval shift in federal policy from the Bush administration, whose policy was to promote violence and kill people like Tom Crosslin and Rollie Rohm at Rainbow Farms in Vandalia Michigan in September of 2001.

On this new breath of fresh leadership from President Obama, T.F.O.C. blogger Richard Clement had a follow up interview with Ms. Melanie Brimm Director of the Department of Community Health Bureau of Health Professionals.


In this interview we discussed the issues of staff reorganization of duties including hiring of additional staff. We also discussed how Technology will improve the lag time for a person applying for a card until they actually receive it in their hands. Currently the department is 60 days behind the 5 day processing requirement for Patient/Caregiver cards as required by law in 2008. To help bring the program into compliance, T.F.O.C. bloggers posed the following questions and concerns to Ms. Brimm:


Richard: What is the Department doing to improve the 60 day time delay in processing cards?

Melanie: To address the issue we will need up to 3 additional data entry employees and the duties of check cashing handled by the Department of the Treasury. This will free up an employee to process more applications via data entry. Treasury employees are required to be confidential with information and money by rule of law. Disclosing confidential information by Treasury employees will result in a hefty fine and at least 1 to 5 years in prison.



Richard: Some people are asking about the picture on the card. How will that be resolved?

Melanie: Regarding the pictures on the card the department will get the picture from the Secretary of State via a relational database link to the picture file located on their server.



Richard: Since the doctors are able to renew their licenses on line, why not medical marijuana patients?

Melanie: Due to the confidentiality of the program we did not want to put it online. But how confidential is confidential? Doctors register and renew their licenses online so why not Medical Marijuana patients? I have asked the Department of Information Technology to make this change a reality by April 4th, 2010 or sooner.



Richard: How about taking online payments from patients and caregivers?

Melanie: The State takes other payment forms online for other departments and, it will only be a matter of days before the Marijuana Program will have that feature available. The program has been a huge success generating revenue to cover the overhead for managing the Marijuana program. The voters had it right and in the process have created jobs and employment opportunity for Michigan Citizens.


Richard: The act specifically mentions smoking marijuana in a public place is prohibited. However Marijuana can be ingested by liquid or solid form like cookies or brownies and still achieve the same feeling. If someone ate a cookie full of medicine in a public place, would that be in compliance with the act?

Melanie: Yes. The biggest complaint from people who do not use cannabis is the odor from the cigarette.



Richard: Thank you for your time and service to the people of the State of Michigan.

Melanie: Thank you for calling.



Our friend George was impressed with the information and pleased with the dedicated service of Ms. Brimm. He asked me to assemble an ad-hoc Medical Marijuana Information Technology advisory board composed of computer professionals, attorneys, patients and caregivers to develop recommendations so that funds and resources could be allocated to handle the demand. After further consultation with various legal professionals and other technology based advocates, we developed a proactive concept of cloud computing. (No pun intended)

Medical Marijuana Information Systems (MMIS) is a concept that will allow patients and caregivers to update and manage their information. Participants will be able to renew their applications, provide caregivers the ability to manage their patients and, update other information as needed.


Users of the system will be able to send a picture that they like to be on their card through a vanity picture ID verification system. The picture must be similar to a passport photo with a full head and shoulder view. Extra $20 fee applies for this service.

In addition to allowing customers to register online, the application forms will be changed so that it can be processed by document scanning hardware and software when mailed in.


Scanners will be located in State of Michigan facilities such as Secretary of State Offices, County Health Departments and Family Independence Agency facilities. Combined with the rescheduling of Marijuana from a Schedule I to a Schedule III drug, we believe that the State of Michigan has existing technology and personnel to make this a reality within 3-6 months. Any thing that takes longer than 6 months is a poor excuse for work with a lack of talent combined.


The program has over 7000 applicants as of October 24, 2009 with %50 of them paying the full $100.00 registration fee. The remaining %50 is paying the $25.00 fee for being on SSI. Using simple math we calculate that the program has made over $437,500 in the period between April 4th, 2009 and September 30, 2009. If the current growth rate continues there will be over 14,000 applications in a one year period generating at least $875,000 in profit with the existing system. By placing the process online all of these numbers would increase by %15 to %30 allowing Michigan residents to register from all over the world.

An appropriation of $60,000 for equipment and time from a State of Michigan employee to do the work would generate a return that would be equal to two times the amount appropriated for the initial project.


Our friend George reviewed the findings and said that he will take it under much consideration. The people have asked for change and it is my job to bring it to them. I want to thank you Richard for your research and the work of the MMIS Committee.


And if you would like to make suggestions or share ideas to improve the Medical Marijuana Program including using hemp products to restore the revenue, please contact Rep. George Cushingberry Jr.

We urge you to email your elected officials in US House of Representatives and Senate. (Stabenow(D-MI)&Levin(D-MI))


Contact one of the members of the Commerce and Energy Committee Rep. Mike Rogers(R-08) to ask him to support the President on stimulating the economy of Michigan with hemp products.




Send an email to your State of Michigan House of Representative and State Senator too. And don’t forget to contact Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm because,

The President has spoken,
to let the people start toking.
And he was not joking...

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Restoring the Revenue: A Status Report on the Michigan Medical Marijuana Program.

The Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.
October 14, 2009


As Michigan citizens watch the budget drama from Lansing between the legislators and the Governor, there is one glimmer of success from the State of Michigan. The credit for this progress goes to the voters of the State of Michigan approving the Medical Marijuana law by a large %63 of the vote. The Medical Marijuana program is quickly becoming a victim of its own success. The entire process as approved by the voters was designed for a 20 day maximum turnaround procedure if there were no issues regarding the application.

If there was a problem, the applicant was allowed a 15 day time period to correct the error(s). With only 5 Full Time Employee (F.T.E.) positions allotted to the program, it has generated close to $450,000 in a six month period ending September 30, 2009. The law currently calls for applications to be approved in a 15 day time period with a valid card being issued 5 days after approval.

At the request of our friend George, T.F.O.C. blogger Richard Clement was in attendance at the 1st Michigan Medical Marijuana Symposium held at the Wayne State University Law School on October 3, 2009. The event was organized by retired Detroit Police Officer Daniel Solano of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (L.E.A.P.) and founder of Police Officers for Drug Law Reform. The people of the State of Michigan were represented well by Ms. Melanie Brimm Director of the State Health Professionals bureau at the Department of Community Health. She is responsible for licensing and regulation of all medical professionals in the State of Michigan and she gave a wonderful speech on guidelines, regulation and progress of the program.

Ms. Brimm gave detailed statistics on the progress of the program and where it stands as of Sept 30, 2009. The bureau is receiving an average of 58 applications per day and had 6998 applications. Of that number 6166 are card carrying participants and 4398 of those are patients. Regarding fees collected %50 of the participants paid the $100.00 regular fee and %50 paid the reduced $25.00 fee for persons who are on SSI. Given these numbers, the program will make well over 1 million dollars in a 12 month period. The leading conditions for Marijuana recommendation as of September 30, 2009 are nausea, pain, and muscle spasms. There is a projected increase in certifying medical professionals of %10 per month over the next 6-18 months.

She also discussed the status of the 15 member board of medical professionals that the law required to be assembled. This board is responsible for reviewing additional qualifying medical conditions that are not currently listed. To be added the new condition must show where Marijuana can make a positive difference in relief of the ailment. Conditions such as depression, job stress, terminal conditions are some of the ones being reviewed by this panel.

To acquire approval, a person must provide actual research with studies and evidence to support their petition to add a qualifying medical condition. Witness with credentials such as medical professionals, research documents, and actual patients serve as excellent sources of evidence. This review panel has to follow the rules of Michigan Administrative Procedure and the board’s decision can be appealed to the Ingham County Circuit Court in Lansing Michigan. Meeting dates will be published and the public will be notified by law.

Physician participation is voluntary and patients can go to any medical professional willing to take your case with regards to a recommendation. Some of the challenges and opportunities of the new law are the establishment of “caregiver networks”, establishing a legal level of Marijuana in a person’s system to declare a person legally high and, the creation of a list of drug interaction guidelines that medical professionals can follow.


On the legal front, the magic word is affirmative defense. I asked attorney Cushingberry to tell me what does that mean? He told me that affirmative defense is providing law enforcement a valid reason for possessing up to 2.5 ounces of Marijuana so that you will be in compliance with State of Michigan Law. If you get arrested your attorney will provide the judge with an affirmative defense, your case will be dismissed, and you will be entitled to the return of your property (medicine). That’s how the law works Richard. Attorney Matt Abel, general counsel for MI-NORML confirmed what attorney Cushingberry had detailed to me and said that I had consulted an excellent legal mind in Mr. Cushingberry.


The last concern that Ms. Brimm talked about was the problems caused by the Department of Information Technology. Currently the data resides on a “restricted server” where only 5 people in the State of Michigan have access to it. Ms. Brimm assured some of the members in the audience regarding the confidentiality of their information.



However some members of the audience posed detailed questions to Ms. Brimm that she was not able to answer at the moment.

1. What is the status of online verification of a valid Med. Marijuana Card by Law Enforcement? (US Customs, State Police, County Sherriff, Detroit Police, etc.)
2. Will the Department convert the existing process to an online registration and renewal procedure?
3. Will the Department provide a real time summary count of applications received, processed, dollars received, conditions applied for, conditions approved with all of this information displayed on the Michigan Medical Marijuana Program website? An average Information Technology professional would complete this job within 8 hours of it being assigned.


A copy of these questions will be sent to Melanie for answers and, if you have any questions regarding the program, please e-mail Melaine Brimm brimm@michigan.gov or call her at (517) 373-8165. Ms. Brim is a State of Michigan Government employee who is truly trying to help the people.

Our friend George is a big supporter of open government and if you have time feel free to contact him at his office in Lansing. He would love to hear from you! This is a request to his constituents in Detroit and other Michigan residents who have a concern for open and honest government to contact him when you get some time.


Office Address
S0687 House Office Building

Mailing Address
P.O. Box 30014
Lansing, MI 48909-7514

Phone: (517) 373-2276
Fax: (517) 373-7186
Toll-Free: (888) 347-8008
Email: georgecushingberry@house.mi.gov

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

What it takes to Make A Great City: Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Debroah Thomas Giving Back to the Community

by The Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.
Tuesday October 13, 2009


ANNOUNCING "A Youth Talent Musical Competition" in Detroit MI Friday October 30, 2009.


Listen to the Youth of the City of Detroit in a free musical contest sponsored by the Detroit Police Department and other community groups. This project is designed to improve the relationship between Detroit's youth and the law enforcement community.

This is the link to the new video/press release www.liveonlinedetroit.com then click on "enter". to start the video Sponsored by "CHANGE DETROIT FOR GOOD"

The video will be re-broadcast from the Chambers of Circuit Court Judge Deborah A. Thomas (Third Judicial Circuit Court of Michigan)

SPONSORED BY:
THE DETROIT POLICE DEPARTMENT
THE BETTER DETROIT YOUTH MOVEMENT
THE DETROIT LION'S CLUB
MOTOWN ALUMNI ASSOCIATION
DETROIT PUBLIC SCHOOLS SECURITY
THE BLACK WOMEN LAWYERS ASSOCIATION OF MICHIGAN
State Rep. George Cushingberry Jr. (D-08 – Detroit)

Monday, October 12, 2009

What it takes to make a Great City: Wrapping up to your responsibilities to your community and self.

The Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.
October 12, 2009


There was an old saying around the City of Detroit where the citizens took an oath of responsibility to the community regarding giving back. They always told us younger ones that if you borrow something from a loved one, you want to return it in the same manner that you received it. This was ingrained in us from the time that we were born and when we raised children ourselves. To move the City in a positive direction, this motto must be sustained by the generations before and after us. The baby boomers are rapidly reaching retirement age, and the generation X and Y people will give way to the new millennium babies born in the 90s. Some of the children of 2000 will be changing the diapers of the baby boomers very soon!


Our Friend George and a few old school friends Roscoe,Malik,Oscar, and Norman, were discussing the issue of what it takes to make and maintain a great city. Retaining and attracting younger and working residents that will sustain neighborhoods to provide decent city services to its residents. We also discussed business ethics and investment into businesses that operate in Michigan. And instead of talking about it we wrote down some of the guidelines while we watched a replay of a meeting by the State House of Representatives appropriations hearing on developing revenue for funding educational programs and reading proposed house bills on generating revenue through agriculture programs in urban areas of Michigan.

This is the list that we developed to ponder for future action.

1.Pay your rent and maintain a log of your assets and debts. In order to end the disorder in your finances, record keeping and do a 6 month to 1 year budget. This means multiplying your food, gas, utilities,rent or mortgage by 12 and making that a fixed cost in your budget. Everyone needs a place to sleep with a shower and reasonable accommodations. Do the same for your medical expenses and credit card debt. Then you project your income over 6 to 12 months and see how you can do your own line item vetoes of expenses.

When you have a clear picture of your financial condition, then you can make plans accordingly. If you decide to go to school, then you should pay close attention to your student loans and the length of the loan. You will be responsible for paying it back so take the time to project that over a 4 year period. To calculate the full value of a school loan you must determine why you are taking it, what you are going to do with the training and degree, then make provisions to pay that back also.

A good program to use is Microsoft Excel and Quick Books that will allow you to use your downloaded statements from your financial institution and incorporate them into a personal financial plan.





2.If you own a business “Keep your Word”! All business from Corporations to small business need to “quit lying and be honest with your customers”. Some of the best advertisement comes from word of mouth. Meaning that after you advertise your services and perform the job to the satisfaction of the customers, the word of your efforts will get around to other people through the good words of others.

3.Quit Making children and walking away from them! Wrap it up! An important step in maintaining a great city is being responsible for the development of its youth. One of them is being responsible for your children and their conduct. To improve the economic and civil stability in a neighborhood, men and women must stop the practice of making children and walking away from them through neglect, disrespect, and blatant abandonment. For about 5 minutes of pleasure and an entire community is affected by the leftovers of “the feeling”. As our friend George says, “The Feel is Ignorance and we have to wrap it up because the feeling is the same”.

When these children are unleashed upon the public through the various school systems, they bring additional costs through increased suspension and detention time. Often times these children come to school disrespecting staff and with no moral and leadership from the parent, they often wind up in trouble or taking classes that they can pass easily with the smallest amount of work. This has to change because the world is not made on easy street and the handouts are few and over with.

4.Equal Treatment starts with respect to yourself and your community. Parents especially the males should get involved with the school system at all levels. If some parents have a skill such as carpentry, culinary arts, agriculture, or other legal and personal skill, they should consider supporting vocational and college prep programs to sustain the growth of the City and the community. There was an old football coach who said to us during practice on a hot August day that “If you quit then you ain't worth a s _ _t.”!

President Obama alluded to the same theory when he paraphrased this statement. We can no longer afford to sit back and consume products without creating a marketable product to trade in return to the world. And to do this, youth and adults need to devote a few hours to learning something new in the mode of giving something back to the community and enhancing your own self worth.

We hope that some of these guidelines can be adopted by our children so that by the end of this next century, the world will be a better place that when we were here. If you would like to discuss this with our friend George, feel free to contact him at the office or schedule a town hall meeting with him so that we can all communicate to formulate a vision for the future.

Office Address
S0687 House Office Building

Mailing Address
P.O. Box 30014
Lansing, MI 48909-7514

Phone: (517) 373-2276
Fax: (517) 373-7186
Toll-Free: (888) 347-8008

Email georgecushingberry@house.mi.gov

Monday, September 28, 2009

Notice of Hearing Dept. of Corrections Sentencing Reform - October 6th 2009 in Lansing Michigan


Press Release From the Chairman of the
House of Representatives Appropriations Committee

Event Date:
October 6th - 10:30am
State Capitol Bldg
Lansing, MI 48933
House Appropriations Room #352

HB4497, HB 4498, and HB 4499 Good Time Credits Bills
For Department of Corrections.

Introduced by State Rep. George Cushingberry Jr. (D-08) Detroit


Rep. Cushingberry is inviting all interested citizens and organizations to appear in person at this important hearing to show support for these bills. These bills are all “tied together” meaning that they all dependent upon each other to be approved to become law. Adoption of this legislation will remove non-violent criminals from the Correction’s system and will give an incentive for prisoners to reform their ways to become productive citizens. Additionally, young offenders will not be mixed into the general population of adult prisoners who will totally abuse the youthful offenders.

Oral and written testimony will be heard and documented for the record. Many of you have called about this matter and now that time has come. Now is the time to either show up or shut up if you are truly interested. The time to speak up or send written comments for the record is NOW. Mr. Cushingberry is term limited and, if you want these bills to get out of the appropriations committee and come to a full vote on the House floor, please show up and testify on October 6th 2009 @ 10:30am.

A brief summary of each bill is listed below. A full text reading can be viewed by clicking on the bill number:

HB4497 Establishes a youth correctional facility which shall house only prisoners committed to the jurisdiction of the department who are 19 years of age or less.

HB4498 A record of all major misconduct charges for which a prisoner has been found guilty shall be maintained and given to the parole board as part of the parole eligibility report. This record will allow parole board members apply time reduction for good behavior and redemption while in the Corrections System.

HB4499 If a person has been convicted of any combination of 3 or more felonies or attempts to commit felonies, whether the convictions occurred in this state or would have been for felonies or attempts to commit felonies in this state if obtained in this state, and that person commits a subsequent felony within this state, the person shall be punished upon conviction of the subsequent felony and sentencing under section 13 of this chapter

For contact information please contact Representative Cushingberry at the number or e-mail address below. If you would like to leave a written comment for the record please send your correspondence by October 5th @ 5:00pm to:





State Rep. George Cushingberry Jr.
Call 517 373-2276
Email: gcushingberry@house.mi.gov

Please include your name, organization, and other contact information in your correspondence.
Thank you.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Ending the Civil War at the Riverfront: Neighborhood Health Care Reform and the new Ambassador Bridge span working together to make a difference

The Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.
September 1st, 2009


One of the primary objections to the new span is the increased traffic and health care concerns of the residents. This is a valid point and a concern to everyone concerned including our friend George. He is a big supporter of health care reform and the well being of his fellow citizens. And through the effort of friends and colleagues opportunity is at hand for health care reform through the expansion of the Ambassador Bridge.

While everyone is rioting at these town hall meetings about health care, our friend George is working to have free health clinics for the neighborhood surrounding the bridge. Rep. Cushingberry and Rep. Tliab do not like to hear about people getting sick and would like to do something about it. Most of the people who are really acting up at those meetings already have paid health care through the Government or their jobs. None of those people live in the affected communities that they are rioting against. A good example of the ethnic and economic differences can be reviewed by looking at this report filed by HBO Real Time with Bill Maher Reporter Dana Gould (Click Here to View Video of Health Care in America)


We the friends would like to have one of those free health care clinics on the Detroit Side of the bridge in the neighborhood that the bridge will affect. This will be a perfect statement to the commitment of equal opportunity health care for all citizens. And since the bridge company did not get permits in advance, let them build the bridge and fund the repair of Riverfront Park to the south of the bridge. This entire area is in need of investments and investors to restore the revenue and dignity to the neighborhood.


This brings us to the US Coast Guard’s opposition of the new span based on questionable research and studies. Please review the imagery of the new bride by clicking this link to a video of the proposed span. (Click here to view a “fly over” of the new span) After reviewing this video you can clearly see that the Coast Guard doesn’t have a boat to float in with their lame excuse of a navigational hazard. And the trucks will not have to travel into neighborhoods because they will have direct access to Interstate 75.


Rep. Cushingberry asked TFOC Investigator/blogger Richard Clement to ask the customers of Riverfront Park how they felt about it. The ones that Richard spoke to in the park vehemently agreed that changes need to be made and in a hurry. One gentleman said that his car was damaged from the neglect of the City to pave the lot. Another resident of the community told Richard that “Stevie Wonder with a blood alcohol count of 2.0 driving a freighter could get under that new bridge. They must have been under a PTSD attack when they came up with that one”. Richard reminded the commenter that driving drunk is not cool and, the Coast Guard needed some love and understanding before they get told off for trying pitch that sorry behind excuse.


The DIBC would be willing to assist and develop the park for use in a partnership with the City of Detroit. As far as the bait shop on the American Side at 23rd street goes the settlement amount will vary between 1.7 million and 20 million. Both sides will have to work on that or a Judge will decide an amount that will please no one but the lawyers and the IRS with the bait shop owner getting the difference. The owner of the bait shop cannot logically conduct business at the present location and be serious about it. The bait shop needs to be closer to the bait and that can be done by relocating the bait shop to Riverfront Park where the fisher-persons are. (Women fish too!)

The old span will have to be retired soon and time waits on nobody. Our friend George is working with everyone concerned to solve the problem for everyone’s benefit. He would like to hear from you and discuss the bridge issues of trucking jobs, health care, and economic growth.




Feel free to contact Rep. Cushingberry at his office or by e-mail

Video of of the Proposed New Amassador Bridge Span

Contact for Rep. George Cushingberry Jr.
Phone: 888 347 8008
Email gcushingberry@house.mi.gov

What it takes to make a great city: Declaring Historic Fort Wayne in Detroit a US Historical Landmark.

The Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.
Detroit Michigan
September 1, 2009


We the Friends of George Cushingberry Jr. support our friend George in his efforts to have Historic Fort Wayne declared a National Historic Landmark by the U.S. Forrest Service. Fort Wayne in southwest Detroit has been a long neglected landmark in the City of Detroit. Its prominence in history is un-disputable and the impact upon the history of America has been undisputed. As far as getting the respect and funding it deserves, the effort has been an abysmal failure and a victim of benign neglect.


Fort Wayne is one of two facilities in the State of Michigan that played a significant role in the defense of America. The other fort is Fort Michilmacinac in located in Mackinaw City MI. The primary difference in the two facilities is that Fort Michilmacinac is recognized as a National Park by the US Forest Service in 1960. The entire facility has federal funding which supports the upkeep and maintenance of the facility and, pumps money into the local economy. State, County, and local entities are relieved by taking the burden of managing the park from their responsibility. The only thing any of these agencies have to provide is local police and fire protection.


On the other hand, the facilities at Historic Fort Wayne are crumbling and some of the historic buildings look like some of the abandoned homes in the city. The current residents of the property do a fine job with what they have to work with.




The management of the property belongs to a consortium of organizations with City of Detroit Recreation Department, Friends of Fort Wayne, Colonial Dames in the State of Michigan, the Detroit Historical Society, Tuskegee Airmen and other groups. While these group of organizations provide support and maintenance through volunteerism and pride, they have limited resources and can only do so much.

City of Detroit and Wayne County residents were assessed a millage specifically to maintain the parks. Now it is time to put the people’s money to work for them. Upgraded facilities for residents to use in the form of a fishing pier, water park, Interpreting Center and upgrades to the National Tuskegee Airmen Museum.


Historic Fort Wayne should be elevated to a US National Park, just like Isle Royale and Fort Michimacinac. Federal recognition as a National Park will allow a conglomerate of Federal law enforcement agencies such as the US Border Patrol and Park Rangers to patrol the area. Fort Wayne is in a perfect position because of its closeness to Canada and the ability to house federal agencies at that location.

If you would like to help our friend George in Lansing make these things happen please contact him at his office.

Contact for Rep. George Cushingberry Jr.
Phone: 888 347 8008
Email George Cushingberry Jr. gcushingberry@house.mi.gov


Additionally, if you would like to help Historic Fort Wayne to maintain, please visit their website at www.historicfortwaynecoalition.com

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Rep. Cushingberry Endorses Online Voter Registration by January 1st 2010 or sooner with House Bill 4539.

By January 1st 2010 Michigan residents will be able to register to vote using the Secretary of State’s website. House bill 4539 is a mandate to the Secretary of State and the Department of Information Technology to design, test, and implement this application.



Our friend George is a co-sponsor of this legislation with other representatives to make this happen. When the friends contacted him at his office he took the time to explain the rationale to T.F.O.C. blogger Richard Clement.

“You can do everything but vote with the internet and it is about time that Government agencies step up to the plate. This bill is a request for service to the Secretary of State and the Department of Information Technology to create this web page link to help Michigan citizens participate in their Government.”

“I have also discussed this with various school districts regarding the registration of high school students eligible to vote. They are required by law to register for Selective Service but, they are not required to register to vote. It should be a requirement to graduation and, any high school student that does not see the need would be required to take an additional course of history with a military veteran.”

“This change would take from 30 minutes to 1 hour to implement based on industry standards for website development and lack of complexity for this application. This is a small investment of time and labor from DIT personnel.”

“And before I have to get back to the House Floor, this is a precursor and a systems test for a same day voter registration law in the State of Michigan by 2011. We have the technology to do the job now and there is no need to let it go to waste. Hey Rich, I have to go now see you later.”


The Secretary of State and DIT must have all procedures in place to insure the integrity of the data being entered. Therefore if you do not have a driver’s license or a State of Michigan ID, you will be required to register in person. Given the tight parameters for this application, making this due date should not take much effort by Information Technology personnel.


For a full reading of the mandate click here

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Ending the Civil War on the Riverfront: Keeping Michigan Trucking Business in Michigan with the new Ambassador Bridge span.

The Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.
August 20, 2009



The construction of the Detroit River International Crossing Bridge(DRIC)has a hidden cost to the State of Michigan. With the support of former Governor James Blanchard lobbying on the behalf of the Canadian Government, the revenue from the trucking industry would be transferred out of the United States to Canada.


If this is allowed to transpire, it will be at the expense to the citizens and business in the City of Detroit.

Mr. Maroun is willing to invest his own money in the bridge and Riverfront Park that is on the land adjoining the bridge if approved. Currently this city park is full of potholes in the parking lot that is big enough to swallow 17 inch tires or big enough to make a Pontiac Vibe fall in and damage the undercarriage of the vehicle.

The neighborhood surrounding the current Ambassador Bridge is in need of new revenue and opportunity. Currently US Customs and US Border patrol vehicles frequently drive the neighborhood surrounding the bridge. The old bridge has been modified to handle the additional traffic and US Customs inspection requirements for trucks. With the new span in place, 4000 to 20,000 additional jobs will be generated by pedestrians and trolley service between Windsor and Detroit. The trolley will be similar to the people mover that is currently travelling around downtown Detroit. It would be located on the new span with a connecting station on the Detroit side to a people mover line to Downtown Detroit. It would also be a long and healthy walk or bike ride across the old bridge to Windsor and back on the old span with the cars and trucks on the new span.

The DRIC Bridge located one mile away from the Ambassador Bridge is being built with public funds in a retaliatory measure toward Mr. Maroun. The biggest waste of taxpayer money is the actions of the United States Coast Guard in their opposition to the bridge. Both of the supports for the new bridge will be located on the riverbank of each side of the river. The span going across the river will be 10 to 20 feet higher than the old span of the bridge. The US Coast Guard is saying that it will interfere with boat traffic going across the river and a navigation hazard.

Did they consult true engineers or did they hire a Sara Palin clone to do the research?

This is the same Coast Guard that has to drive their boats under the Mackinaw Bridge and other existing bridges in Michigan. This is an extremely poor excuse by our Government at all levels and, the commanding officer of the Coast Guard has earned a written reprimand from his superiors for marketing this excuse.

The solution to this problem is to allow Mr. Maroun to complete the project at the current location. The residents of the neighborhood could use the additional business and the jobs that it will generate. Mr. Maroun has spent his own money to acquire land rights on both sides of the river including the narrow stretch of land between Highway 401 and the current bridge.

Road construction creates jobs on both sides of the river and this is on the wrong side of the issue. Mayor Bing and our friend George support the completion of the project at the current location. Public Dollars shall not be unwisely used to create an additional project to disadvantage private business. The Ambassador Bridge has been one of the most stable businesses in Detroit. We at The Friends want you to send an email or call Rep Cushingberry to express your concern for the job killing stance on the bridge and, support its completion keeping jobs and revenue in the City of Detroit and the State of Michigan.

Contact for Rep. George Cushingberry Jr.
Phone: 888 347 8008
Email George Cushingberry Jr. gcushingberry@house.mi.gov

Michigan Department of Transportation Gateway Project Information Webpage
MapQuest View of the Ambassador Bridge Area

*** As Corrected August 27, 2009 *********

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Restoring the Revenue: Rep. Cushingberry addresses this pressing issue with an online presentation.

Our friend George has for public review a presentation on the current status of the Michigan economy. Please take the time to review it by (clicking here). Michigan will recover from our current economic condition and with the leadership of our friend George, our state will prosper once again. If you have questions or would like to schedule a visit by Rep. Cushingberry please contact our office by calling or email:

Phone: (517) 373-2276
Toll-Free (888) 347-8008
Email georgecushingberry@house.mi.gov

Thank you for allowing Mr. Cushingberry to serve the people.
The Friends of George Cushingberry Jr.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Ending The Standoff at the Gateway Project: House Concurrent Resolution #11 - "Ending the Civil War on the Riverfront"

Ending the Standoff at the Gateway Project:
Rep. Cushingberry introduces legislation to bring a truce on the river
By The Friends of Cushingberry
July 20, 2009


House Concurrent Resolution #11 was introduced by Representative Cushingberry this year to resolve the differences and encourage investment into the City of Detroit, State of Michigan and the United States of America. The completion of this bridge project would allow pedestrians, bike riders, and automotive traffic to cross the river fostering trade and revenue between the two cities of Windsor Canada and Detroit Michigan. It has been determined by independent studies from both countries that the project will create nearly 4,000 jobs during construction and support 20,000 jobs over the next 2 decades.

The friends support our friend George’s request that the Michigan Strategic Fund approve the Phase II inducement resolution of $787 million dollars to assist with the completion of the project. We also encourage MDOT and Detroit International Bridge Company to resolve their differences by allowing for the $145 million oversight to be made up in 3 to 6 years with bonds, public stock offerings, and payment from tolls from the increased traffic. And if it gets too tight, we would support the DIBC holding a fish fry on both sides of the bridge every third Friday of the month until the debt is paid off.


Marty Maroun is a brilliant person who likes to build bridges and spend his own money to do it with. With a short term loan from the Michigan Strategic Fund any additional work would be paid for and reimbursed back to the Fund within 5 years through duties and tariffs on products grown in America and Canada. Hemp from Canada instead of trash, exporting Detroit fertilizer from reprocessed solid waste as meloganite. The revenue generated from these and other sources would be invested into the DIBC project and others as needed. The entire region would prosper with investments from banks that are Michigan friendly and have a concern for the survival of the state.

Tearing out work that has already been done is a job killer and with Michigan’s unemployment rate at %15.0, this is an unwise request in these economic times. In summary the United States Coast Guard should come up with a better plan instead of excuses and work with DIBC. There is no excuse for stopping a job creating bridge project that will benefit everyone in the long run.

The needless standoff regarding funding is not creating any jobs but causing confusion and bad feelings among my constituents. In the interest of jobs and economic growth the differences must be resolved by all parties.




The entire text of the resolution can be read by clicking here:
House Concurrent Resolution #11 – Full Text.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Ending the Standoff at the Gateway Project in Detroit MI (Pot & MDOT)


Ending the Standoff at the Gateway Project
How Pot can fund MDOT
by The Friends of George Cushingberry




It was just a few weeks ago that MDOT Director Kirk Steudle went to the House appropriations committee to beg for additional funds. You could not tell the difference between him and Keith Sweat in the way he was asking for an increase in fuel taxes. He said that a half of pack of Gum increase in the fuel tax will allow MDOT to build and maintain new and existing bridges and roads. At the same time MDOT has $145 million dollars tied up in a legal squabble along the US / Canada border regarding the Ambassador Bridge and Federal Stimulus Funding.

Rep. Cushingberry asked his master blogger Richard Clement to take some time to investigate the situation on the river and report back to him. And on one bright and beautiful Saturday afternoon Richard went for a ride on the river. There was a duty free shop and a lot of dirt and, there was construction that stopped at the street. On the Canadian side, all of the homes in the path of the bridge are vacant and waiting to be removed. The Ambassador Bridge is a privately owned bridge and the owner wants a new span built. They have duty free shops that sell a pack of gum with no sales tax on them so that visitors can have something to take home.

So what does this have to do with a half a pack of gum? How much is a half a pack of gum? How big is the pack in question? ($0.25 up to $1.00 for a pack of some real good Wrigley’s Spearmint. The math would be half of those amounts or $0.37 and $1.50 respectively. ) I ran into my old school neighbor from around the corner by the name of Richard Bennett. Mr. Bennett a prominent citizen of Detroit designed the African Mask Logo on the Charles H. Wright museum and he heard about the half a pack of gum increase in fuel.

I mentioned to him that did you know that for the cost of a $2.00 marijuana cigarette MDOT could have enough money to fix roads, bridges, potholes, and still have money left over for employee out of state travel. The Duty Free shops on both ends of the bridge will be allowed to sell hemp products without fear from prosecution at the hands of US Customs Agents and the Drug Enforcement Agency. If you have a valid Michigan Medical Marijuana card with your passport, you can legally have 2.5 ounces of Marijuana in your possession at the border crossing.

Before I could finish another neighbor Leodis “Tony” Elam who is a magician with carpentry work in the City walked by. He said to me “man, what are you talking about”? Richard Bennett said let him finish and we will dog him out later! Tony said go ahead and finish because I have some work to do. I carried on to say that MDOT could raise substantial amounts of revenue by allowing the utilization of land in the right of way areas of the Interstate Highway system to produce income generating crops. Crops like from corn to Industrial Hemp will fuel Michigan and create jobs for residents and sustain the economy.

What is wrong with TWO bridges? Michigan and Ontario have approved land for a brand new span about a mile away that will be built with public funds. Is there a plan for a pedestrian walkway with a bike path to Canada on the bridge? If the old span is kept then will it be converted to a pedestrian walkway? These questions must be answered for the good of all the Citizens of Detroit and Michigan in order to allow the owner to build this new bridge. The owner of the Ambassador Bridge is a very sharp person with a definite plan to get the job done. Everything else is an accounting matter that can be handled by an admission of guilt by all and a plan to pay for the overage over a period of time. Basically add up the extras, finish the job and go home.

After listening to that speech, Tony and Richard pulled out their cell phones and called their elected officials saying to them that they need to get it together in Lansing. Then they said they would cut me a break this time and said say hello to your dad.

We the Friends of Cushingberry are urging that every candidate running for office in the City of Detroit write a letter of concern to MDOT and Canadian officials seeking a settlement of this issue. We call on current Mayor Bing and the Detroit City Council to file a letter of protest with the Michigan House and Senate to have this project come to a completion. This is not the way President Obama wanted the stimulus funds to be spent as a reserve fund for attorney fees. While we know that the legal community needs employment but deep down inside, both sites must come to a conclusion to resolve these differences.

Representative Cushingberry is not happy about this situation and would like to see it resolved at once before further action is taken by the appropriations committee

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Rep. Cushingberry fights for Consumer Credit Dignity with House Bill 4330 of the 2009 Session.

Representative Cushingberry is co-sponsoring House Bill 4330, legislation to allow consumers to take legal action against Credit Reporting Agencies who continually report negative credit information in an unjust manner. Instead of playing mail and phone tag with arrogant and un-cooperative credit representatives, a consumer can bring action in a Michigan District Court to adjudicate the matter.

House Bill 4330 is designed to be a friend to the consumer who of no fault of their own lost their job, death in the family, divorce and other reasons that credit information becomes negative. The text of the bill is as follows:
SEC. 8309. (1) A CONSUMER MAY BRING AN ACTION IN THE DISTRICT COURT AGAINST A CONSUMER REPORTING AGENCY FOR AN INCOMPLETE OR INACCURATE ITEM OF INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THE CONSUMER'S FILE AT THE CONSUMER REPORTING AGENCY. AN ACTION MAY NOT BE COMMENCED UNDER THIS SUBSECTION UNLESS THE PROCEDURE FOR RESOLVING DISPUTES CONCERNING THE COMPLETENESS OR ACCURACY OF SUCH ITEMS OF INFORMATION UNDER SECTION 611 OF THE FAIR CREDIT REPORTING ACT, 15 USC 1681I, HAS BEEN COMPLETED.

In order for a consumer to take an action, the consumer must exhaust all remedies and procedures under the United States Fair Credit Reporting Act. When the consumer goes to District Court and receives a favorable judgment, the consumer reporting agency has 10 days to remove the information or face fines and contempt of court charges. The sponsors of this bill have the consumer’s financial best interest at heart.

Representative Cushingberry and Primary Sponsor Fred Durhal are active when it is an issue of consumer protection of our constituents. If you are in support of this legislation, The Friends would like you to take the time to e-mail and call your State Representative in Lansing and the sponsors of the bill expressing your support to make it the law of the land.

A Full reading of the bill can be seen here when you (click here).


Primary Sponsor
Rep. Fred Durhal. FredDurhal@house.mi.gov

Co-Sponsors:
Bob Constan bobconstan@house.mi.gov
George Cushingberry georgecushingberry@house.mi.gov
Robert Dean robertdean@house.mi.gov
Bert Johnson bertjohnson@house.mi.gov
Fred Miller fredmiller@house.mi.gov
Joel Sheltrown joelsheltrown@house.mi.gov
Rashida Tlaib RashidaTlaib@house.mi.gov
Coleman Young colemanayoungii@house.mi.gov

Sunday, June 14, 2009

The Obama Administration and Census 2010: A commitment to reverse the act of "Digital Injustice" by undercounting citizens.

Now that the Obama Administration has decided to move this department to a Cabinet Level position, extra attention will be paid to processes that determine the “final” number count.

Since the 1960's the census has undercounted cities and counties by %3 to %14 percent. A traditional method used against a city is the definition of a home or a structure. You may know that there are some boarders who are occupying a home in the neighborhood. The census has a map of your neighborhood and knows that something is there. Your neighbors all agree that someone is living there and have proof by looking at them everyday going in and out of the home.

When the Census Takers come through the neighborhood, they count that home and the people in there. As the numbers are passed up through the chain of processing, someone decides that the home is not a structure and those numbers are removed from the final count. The City loses out on the count because some Washington appointed bureaucrat decided that it should happen like that.


With the Obama Administration elevating the Census to a Cabinet level position, more attention will be paid to the processing of information. Even more intriguing, the administration will have final say over the analysis of the information. This effort will require that citizens that have technology skills are essential to the achievement of fair counting of Cities in our Country.

Just imagine people like Senator Trent Lott of Mississippi as the Chief Information Officer for the Census with a staff full of database administrators and computer programmer/analysts who think like him. This man believes that segregation in the 1960’s would have been better for America. Dr. Martin Luther King would have been in a Guantanamo Style prison and Nelson Mandela would still be in Jail. The applications that the staff would design would count citizens as darkies with other ethnic categories to dilute the true count of people. They would add other ethnic categories and, add so many variables that by the time the data was official, you would have an undercount/over count situation.

The following table shows what Detroit’s 2000 Census Population would have looked like based on the adjustment correction of 3 to 14 percent. (Note at a %6 adjustment, Detroit’s reported population of 951,270 would have been 1,008,346)

Table 1 Detroit 2000 Census Figures Adjusted %3 to %14.


Pct. Population
0% 951,270
3% 979,808
4% 989,321
5% 998,834
6% 1,008,346
7% 1,017,859
8% 1,027,372
9% 1,036,884
10% 1,046,397
11% 1,055,910
12% 1,065,422
13% 1,074,935
14% 1,084,448




(Source 2000 Census – click here to go to US Census Bureau data for Detroit)

Resources would be re-directed to populations that would be inflated for the purpose of weakening the voting voice and the financial resources of a group of people. Gerrymandering is the establishment of state and federal congressional boundaries to give one party a voting advantage over another. For example the Michigan’s US 8th congressional district includes the area of Lansing, Clinton County, Livingston County and, parts of Shiawassee and northern Oakland County. (Click here to view map of Michigan's 8th congressional district). You end up with congress people who consistently vote against President Obama and do not have to worry about losing an election. The resulting damage appears in the area of race, finance and economics. The continuation of this process will contribute to a 21st century style depression that will cause massive damage to the national security of America.

We at the Friends of Cushingberry are calling for total transparency of the Census process. This will include the fair processing of data using accountable and certified methods and procedures. The advance of technology and the improved processes from the 1900s makes the actual process of counting citizens obsolete. However, the process has a purpose because it can be used as a benchmark to determine the accuracy of collected data from 3rd party sources like moving companies, utility companies, and private businesses.

Herman Hollerith was a former Census Bureau employee who quit government work and founded IBM. Every punch card and mainframe was the result of a birth of an idea to improve a process. With President Obama elevating the Census to a Cabinet level Agency, technology and accountability will take on an increased importance to citizens of Michigan. Our final word for today is that the Census is hiring! (Click here to apply) The President and Rep. Cushingberry are urging all city and county residents to apply for jobs with the US Census Bureau today. Your community’s future depends on it.

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