Scott Walker looking to replicate Michigan emergency planner law in Wisconsin
According to Forbes magazine, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is following the lead of Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder in wanting legislation allowing the state to appoint Emergency Financial Managers with virtually unlimited authority over municipalities. Forbes’ Rick Ungar characterizes it as “financial martial law.” He writes:
Reports are surfacing that Scott Walker is now preparing his next assault on the democratic political process in the State of Wisconsin.
Following the lead of Michigan GOP Governor Rick Snyder, Walker is said to be preparing a plan that would allow him to force local governments to submit to a financial stress test with an eye towards permitting the governor to take over municipalities that fail to meet with Walker’s approval.
According to the reports, should a locality’s financial position come up short, the Walker legislation would empower the governor to insert a financial manager of his choosing into local government with the ability to cancel union contracts, push aside duly elected local government officials and school board members and take control of Wisconsin cities and towns whenever he sees fit to do so.
Such a law would additionally give Walker unchallenged power to end municipal services of which he disapproves, including safety net assistance to those in need.
Forbes said legislation to do this would be submitted in the Wisconsin legislature in May.