Discuss Detroit Archives - Beginning January 2007 What would you ask Kenneth Cockrel? Previous Next
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Traxus
Member
Username: Traxus

Post Number: 48
Registered: 02-2006
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 2:27 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I've got Kenneth Cockrel, President of city council coming in as a guest speaker to my speech class next tuesday. If you could ask him one question, what would it be?

I'm not sure of the topic he will be speaking on, but if anything relevant to a question pops up I'll make a point to ask him and post the answer.
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Jt1
Member
Username: Jt1

Post Number: 8276
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 2:50 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Given the fact that property tax is only 6% of total city revenue why doesn't Detroit look at cutting property tax by a large enough amount to make our taxes on par or below the average suburb? (I don't know if this can be done due to debt obligations but I am curious)

What is his take on aut insurance in the city?

What effect does he believe the city income tax has on losing or not luring jobs to the city?

What steps does he think DPD is taking to be more proactive in fighting crime?

When will city council cut their disgustingly bloated budgets and reduce headcount to a reasonable level?

What is the future of unions in the city? What concessions can we get from them?

How aggresive are we at writing grants for available money?

What is the real story with the financial situation in the city?

Most of these are not issues CC can control but I would like to hear his thoughts.
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Dabirch
Member
Username: Dabirch

Post Number: 2078
Registered: 06-2004
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 3:18 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Was your dad as cool as he seemed?

How do you deal with all of the freakin' idiots that you have to work with every day?
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Al_t_publican
Member
Username: Al_t_publican

Post Number: 148
Registered: 06-2004
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 3:28 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

At the risk of sounding morbid I'm still curious as to the wrongful death claim Shelia Cockrell filed against the city for Ken's death. From what I heard she filed a claim against the city for an EMS crew taking extra time to arrive after making a wrong turn to get to her house.

Did anyone ever read the details of her claim?

How much of a monetary award did she receive if any?
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Susanarosa
Member
Username: Susanarosa

Post Number: 1361
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 3:52 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

From what you "heard" there was a claim...
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Quinn
Member
Username: Quinn

Post Number: 1111
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 3:53 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Do you shave your head?
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Al_t_publican
Member
Username: Al_t_publican

Post Number: 149
Registered: 06-2004
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 4:55 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

From what "I heard" from people inside city government where I worked at the time of Cockrell's death.

Doesn't it strike you as being odd, Susanarosa and Quinn, that someone would sue the city for the EMS response time?
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Quinn
Member
Username: Quinn

Post Number: 1113
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 5:18 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I could care less about either Sheila or Ken...I think they're both kinda lousy. I really don't know too much about either to say that...it's a book-cover judgement.

Both are using the name Cockrel to get elected. Face it, if either were named anything else, they'd be doing something completely different.
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Susanarosa
Member
Username: Susanarosa

Post Number: 1362
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 6:45 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

It seems odd that a person who attests to know so much about the details of a man's death can't even properly spell the name of the deceased.
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Al_t_publican
Member
Username: Al_t_publican

Post Number: 153
Registered: 06-2004
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 7:00 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

A) I don't know the details about his death; I'm only concerned that there was a wrongful death claim against a city that has been broke for years by someone who purports herself to be an advocate of the city.

B) That I had one two many L's in his name shouldn't be that much of a biggie.

Why is this an problem to inquire about a claim by a public figure against the city? I thought the Freedom of Information Act law would apply here.

By the way, I still have a framed poster that I bought in the early '70s at the From the Ground Up bookstore that was part of the Cockrel, Murphy, Ravitz et al organization.
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Traxus
Member
Username: Traxus

Post Number: 49
Registered: 02-2006
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 7:10 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"When will city council cut their disgustingly bloated budgets and reduce headcount to a reasonable level?"

haha

In case he says something absurd, which I can't imagine him doing, I'll pull that one.

The class, speaking on Detroit, is in its development stages, I don't want to draw negative attention towards it .
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Susanarosa
Member
Username: Susanarosa

Post Number: 1363
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 7:23 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Then file a FOIA. Asking these questions on a message board seems pretty silly if you're interested in a FOIA request.

The city of Detroit's Law Department has an entire department that handle FOIA's.
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Lowell
Board Administrator
Username: Lowell

Post Number: 3654
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Friday, February 09, 2007 - 10:45 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Ken Cockrel Sr. could quite possibly have become mayor of Detroit had his life not been cut so short. He was a powerhouse, an intellectual, an activist, charismatic, good looking and very likeable in person. He used to stop by Alvin's back in its prebar artist hangout deli/coffee house days where I met him a couple of times.

Sure, his son and wife benefit from his name, but they are both very bright in their own ways and, IMO, could have arrived where they are on their own. They both care a lot about the city of Detroit and its people.
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Al_t_publican
Member
Username: Al_t_publican

Post Number: 155
Registered: 06-2004
Posted on Saturday, February 10, 2007 - 3:38 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

To: Susanarosa
Why is asking about a purported settlement between the city and the family of a city celebrity "silly" to ask about on this forum when, afterall, such things should be of public record. I was merely suggesting FOIA as an option; I'm asking here if anyone knows of the specifics of the settlement.

If you know how city gov works, and I suspect you do, you may know of the numerous law suits the city has settled without public disclosure as part of a settlement. I can think of one case against a supervisor in which an employee was awarded a cash settlement regarding sexual harassment without the supervisor being punished, all of which was part of a sealed agreement.

As for Sheila, the day she endorsed Coleman Young in '89(?) for reelection I was reminded again that all that talk about Marxism in the early '70s by the left in Detroit was largely posturing by careerist social democrats trying to pass themselves off as revolutionaries. That's fine with me. Just spare me all that "power to the people" jazz.
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Magnasco
Member
Username: Magnasco

Post Number: 220
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Saturday, February 10, 2007 - 11:16 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Not to thread-jack, but I think Jt1 hit that property tax solution on the head, and I think the future of the City hangs in the balance.

I have said it to many at the City level that we have to make a big enough dent in the taxes to swing it from the negative side of a person's choice to buy in Detroit, to the positive side. We have to appeal to a person sitting outside the City. Make them think it is a deal that they can't pass up. And that they are getting in on the ground floor of the neighborhood redevelopment.

They argue that they need the revenue to survive, and that any cut would take them below the levels they need, which is a fair comment. But then they go and cut the taxes for the largest tax generating homes in the city anyway. And leave the taxes for the smaller, less desirable homes, which are generating a much less significant percentage of the taxes.

The other side of it is the valuation of the city's home base. Something like 60% of the homes are valued below $20,000. (i have the stat here somewhere) They need some proposal A uncapping to occur and that is only going to happen when they sell these homes.

So...the truth is that selling a home will likely create a tax revenue increase rather than decrease because of so many capped and low values. A 30% decrease of a number that is twice the first number is still going to be a larger number. But that will only occur if the taxes are cut significantly enough to create a Desire to move into the City to take advantage of it.

Of course this must be coupled with a realistic Detroit School strategy to attract those with Children.

The problem is that without it, we seem doomed to low property values across the board, and high taxes to meet the needs. And there has been talk of all the abandoned houses now, do you think that trend is reversing? People are losing homes faster now than at any other time in the past.

And back to the topic of the thread here: Kenneth Cockrel, Jr would be a proponent of cutting taxes across the entire city, if someone could show him the numbers that would work. I have heard him mention it in Council meetings.

Ask him about that. :-)
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1953
Member
Username: 1953

Post Number: 1293
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Saturday, February 10, 2007 - 11:21 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

What is the city doing to streamline city-owned property sales?
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Everydayislikesunday
Member
Username: Everydayislikesunday

Post Number: 300
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Saturday, February 10, 2007 - 11:51 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Clearly we are in the same speech class, traxus! According to the professor, the title of the lecture is "Politics in Detroit," and will be slightly more formal than emery king's visit, just in the fact that Ken Cockrel will have prepared remarks, and then, of course, there will be a q & a session.

I agree with not putting a negative spin on things, though. Some issues are unavoidable, but so many in that class already have such a terrible view of the city. I really thought it would be a more open minded group of students. Oh well, that just enhances the debates, right?
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Traxus
Member
Username: Traxus

Post Number: 50
Registered: 02-2006
Posted on Monday, February 12, 2007 - 12:08 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Magnasco, where can I find more information about this?

I'll agree that it's a pressing issue but I'd like to have my ducks in a row if I'm going to shoot with it.

Whats the status on loft/apt taxes downtown?

(Message edited by Traxus on February 12, 2007)
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Vic_doucette
Member
Username: Vic_doucette

Post Number: 315
Registered: 10-2003
Posted on Monday, February 12, 2007 - 12:24 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

How often do you and Sheila get together for pizza and beer?

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