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Friday, October 20, 2017

District 2 City Council Candidate Debate with George Cushingberry Jr. Roy McAlister and Virgil Smith

By Richard C. Clement

On October 19th, 2017 George Cushingberry Jr. debated his challengers Roy McAlister and Virgil Smith at the Westminster Church of Detroit for the Winship Community Association Candidates Forum.
Website: 2017 Candidates Debate Forum Video Link.
In this debate he demonstrated the experience, education, and demonstrated ability to earn the write in vote of confidence to be rehired by the citizens of District 2 on November 7th.

George Cushingberry Jr. believes that literacy is the key to continue the progress of the City regarding long term future of the city with his motto:
"In order to succeed, you must learn how to read!" 
A majority of the people incarcerated at the Wayne County Jail cannot read and that is a precursor to criminal behavior. Then George Cushingberry gave the audience an insight into how the city was able to turn around a grave financial situation into an improved bond rating and financial stability for the citizens of the City of Detroit.  

He also gave strong financial reasons for a YES vote on Medical Marijuana ordinances 24 and 61 to opting into State of Michigan's Medical Marijuana laws.  Both Virgil Smith and Roy McAlister do not support Marijuana reform and want people to vote NO to retain the current ordinance. The current ordinance has proven to be a questionable law because it is being manipulated by scrupulous business owners who were using churches and day care centers to prevent the opening of another business instead of for true religious reasons. In many cases, some of the churches were closed and owned by the land bank and allowed to qualify as barrier to prevent the opening of another business.

Education, Experience, and Demonstrated Ability

Both McAlister and Smith sounded like Jeff Sessions and Harry Anslinger describing Marijuana as a Schedule I drug with no medical value, using that as a reason to vote NO. Whereas George Cushingberry Jr. described the benefits of voting YES to repair the financial damage to the City retirees, especially the retired police and fire employees. .

If you want a detailed presentation on the state of the City Budget, Council President Pro Tempore Cushingberry will be hosting a public meeting regarding the City of Detroit's finances on Thursday October 26th, at 6pm at the Joseph Walker-Williams Center 8341 Rosa Parks Blvd. 48206.

After further review of the candidates,  George Cushingberry Jr. has demonstrated that he is the best choice for the Office of City Detroit Council member in District 2.  Roy McAlister does not have the legislative background that Cushingberry has and, Virgil Smith is one Supreme Court Judge away from doing a two year mandatory minimum for a gun crime. Letting a Circuit Court judge condone domestic violence by their opinion does a disservice to the citizens. By not analyzing all outcomes in letting Mr. Smith run for office, the court failed the Citizens of Detroit.

When you Write-In his name on your ballot, Detroit can continue the work on the path to financial independence from all State of Michigan control and continue the progress we have made as a City for four more years.

On November 7th, Re-Elect George Cushingberry Jr. - The Man For You In District 2  

Thursday, October 19, 2017

On Nov 7th - Vote YES on 24 and 61 for Firefighters Health Care In Michigan

By Richard C. Clement - Marijuana Policy Analyst

Council President Pro Tem George Cushingberry Jr. recommends a YES vote on revisions to the Marijuana Facilities ordinance so that it will benefit Firefighters in Detroit and Michigan. Starting on October 1st, 2017,  30% of all revenue from the Marijuana industry will benefit the first responder presumed coverage fund created in section 405 of the worker’s disability compensation act of 1969, 1969 PA 317, MCL 418.405.

This fund is being maintained by the Michigan Department of Treasury so that firefighters who contract cancer from hazardous burning material on duty will be compensated for their injuries.  The current ordinance harms these first responders needlessly because of a perceived prejudice from a few individuals that did not take the time to read to comprehend the information they need to make an informed decision.

Pursuant to Public Act 515 of 2014 the First Responder Presumed Coverage Fund is created. The Director of the Workers' Compensation Agency is the administrator of the Fund.
In order to submit an application the first responder must:

  • Be a member of a fully paid fire department or public fire authority and be compensated on a full-time basis,
  • Be in active service of the department or authority for at least 60 months,
  • Be diagnosed with any respiratory tract, bladder, skin, brain, kidney, blood, thyroid, testicular, prostate, or lymphatic cancer,
  • Be employed in the active service of the department or authority at the time the cancer manifests itself, and be exposed to the hazards incidental to fire suppression, rescue, or emergency medical services in the performance of his or her work-related duties,
  • First apply for and do all things necessary to qualify for any pension benefits to which he or she may be entitled.

Website/PDF Document: State of MI Public Act 281 - Part 6 - Section 602 subsection (5D) parts I and II

The current ordinance also discriminates against people of faith who use Marijuana as a holy sacrament and as a primary part of their religion.  Rastafarians would have to invoke their rights under the Federal Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act so that they can worship.

Finally by voting YES on both issues, we will be able to monitor the businesses and stop the Green on Green crime being performed by some business owners who open up Churches and Day Care centers to prevent the opening of a facility. 

Some pastors and neighborhood groups want to allow people like Warren MI Mayor Jim Fouts to open up a school on the north side of 8 mile road to shut down a facility in Detroit and, get paid $500 for turning them into the “authorities”.

Say no to this hypocrisy by Voting YES on 24 and 61, because now is the time to get the job done!

Show up and Vote YES  on Tuesday Nov 7th and, If you live in District 2, write in the name of George Cushingberry Jr., the man for you in District 2.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Vote YES twice on November 7th 2017 for Sensible Marijuana Laws in the City of Detroit

By Richard C. Clement - Marijuana Policy Analyst

On Nov 7th, two proposals Chapters 24 and 61 are on the City of Detroit Ballot to allow the citizens of Detroit to decide to Opt-Into the State of Michigan Medical Marijuana Caregivers Act with their vote.  The highlights of the proposals are as follows:

  • Opts the City of Detroit ordinance into the State of Michigan Medical Marijuana Facilities and Licensing Act
  • Allows for new revenue to be reinvested into parks, recreation centers, retiree pensions, and fighting the war on poverty
  • Establishes standards to regulate caregiver centers through the city's Building, Safety Engineering and Environmental Department regarding issuance, renewal and revocation.
  • Amends the definition of a Drug-Free School Zone to correspond to federal and state law that requires dispensaries to be at least 1,000 feet from schools, colleges and public libraries
  • Dispensaries will be allowed to open within 500 feet of another dispensaries, 500 feet of exempt religious institutions where religious services are regularly conducted. 
  • Removes restrictions on liquor, beer/wine stores, child-care centers, arcades and parks.
  • Dispensaries would be allowed to stay open until 9 p.m.
  • The new ordinance will aid in preventing unscrupulous business owners from opening a Church, or Day Care Center for the sole purpose of preventing the opening of a MMCC business.
  • Adoption of this ordinance by the electorate will effectively stop Winfred Blackmon, Hazel Fludd, and their clown car full of neighborhood groups who come to EVERY Board of Zoning Hearing with frivolous claims, twisted reasoning, and false allegations. In some cases the opposition lives up to 9 miles away from a MMCC facility and talk about the places like they live next door to them.

The current City of Detroit Medical Marijuana ordinance violates tenants of the Federal Religious Use and Institutionalized Persons Act and, the US Constitution 1st Amendment on separation of church and state. Additionally crime data from the Detroit Police Department shows that crime has actually DECREASED around the addresses of the businesses and, that they are viable tax paying entities and, that the neighborhood groups are lying to a government entity for personal gain.

Richard C. Clement with the owners of the
House of Zen 
14501 Mack Ave, Detroit, MI 48215

Whereas current District 2 City Council Candidate Roy McAlister is a solid NO vote on both measures, Council President Pro Tempore George Cushingberry recommends a YES vote on amending Chapters 24 and 61. If elected to City Council, Roy McAlister wants to limit and continue the shutdown of MMCC facilities by retaining the current ordinance. George Cushingberry wants to bring Detroit into the 21st century from 80 years of prohibition policy based on racist thoughts and ideas from the 1930’s.
Website:  House Of Zen /

Adopting both measures will bring needed revenue to the city, create jobs, and revitalize some of the empty building in the neighborhoods. Another good thing is that it increases opportunities for Minority and Women owned businesses like the House of Zen on Mack Avenue who can employ people from the neighborhood, draw new business to the neighborhood and add to the quality of life. 

Vote YES on 24, Vote YES on 61, now is the time to get the job done.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Mayor Mike Duggan and Council President Pro Tem George Cushingberry team up to Improve Detroit Neighborhoods - Starting with District 2

By Richard C. Clement

Council President Pro Tem George Cushingberry Jr. will be leading a financial team review with Deputy Chief Finance Officer John Naglick and Council members of the Budget, Audit, and Finance committee to review Mayor Mike Duggan’s $125 million bond fund request to revitalize the city’s commercial business corridors. With the support of city and community partners, business districts will be more attractive and pedestrian friendly.

Upon implementation in 2018, the city aims to recapture some of the estimated $2.6 billion in retail spending Detroit residents do annually in surrounding communities, according to a study by the Detroit Economic Development Corporation. The McNichols corridor in District 2 will be the model for this citywide project and, we are strongly anticipating its approval by the entire 9 member Detroit City Council.

Website: Council President Pro Tem George Cushingberry Jr. and District 2 Manager Kim Tandy make plans for the neighborhood.

President Pro Tem Cushingberry strongly expressed that Detroiters Quit Rapping and Start Mapping a plan for the future of Detroit’s neighborhoods. With his leadership in finance, Mayor Duggan and the bond fund managers will redirect road dollars into the neighborhoods for projects such as this.  One of the goals of this project is to reduce the speeding deaths along the McNichols, Puritan, and 7 Mile Corridors.  Drivers are travelling too fast on roads that were designed in the 1950 and are paying for it with their lives.

If you support the City of Detroit neighborhoods then, do the right thing this November 7th at the ballot box  and write in George Cushingberry Jr. name on your ballot.  We have come so far as a City to allow imitators and perpetrators to get elected and destroy the progress we have made as a City Council and Administration for the best interests of our Detroit Citizens.

In other news, the University District Community Association is sponsoring a petition drive to declare a Special Assessment District for their neighborhood. This is a request that is similar to the  request from neighbors who live in Sherwood Forest, Palmer Woods, and the Detroit Golf Club. With the special assessment, residents in the U.D.C.A. neighborhood are agreeing to asses themselves an additional $175 a year per home for enhanced services of mosquito control, extra security, and snow removal from streets and sidewalks. President Pro Tem Cushingberry has been very supportive of the efforts and was a driving force for the needs of our citizens to request better services through neighborhood management of assessment funds.

If you have any questions about the assessment petition, please do not hesitate to call (313) 447-0003.

Website: University District Community Association Website/Blog on Special Assessment District request from neighborhood residents. - Good Stuff on the Internet