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July Newsletter

Welcome to the second installment of our monthly newsletter! In this issue we highlight several exciting upcoming events and an op-ed by Senator Colbeck.
The WCRC will have a booth at this year's Wayne County Fair and is is currently looking for volunteers to cover shifts. The fair runs August 3rd through 8th in Belleville. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact us at:
wcrc@waynecountyrc.org
Our Annual Free Picnic is set for Saturday September 26th, 2:00 - 4:00 PM at William D. Ford Senior Citizens Activity Center, 750 Troy St, Taylor, MI 48180. Please consider bringing a dish to pass. Sponsorships are available for a flat rate of $50 to help us keep this event free. 
We are looking for old photos, event programs, and other flyers from past WCRC events, as well as obsolete congressional district committees and clubs to digitally document the history of the Republican Party in Wayne County. Please contact: wcrc@waynecountyrc.org with inquiries.
Op-Ed: School Funding – The Rest of the Story
 
While it can be called many things, Michigan’s school funding formula is anything but simple. This fact is never more evident than when trying to explain whether or not one particular school district received a funding increase, or why one school district does not receive the same level of funding from the State as another.
 
One thing we can state unequivocally – Michigan has increased state spending on education over the last five years from $10,803,402,900 in FY 2010-11 to $12,120,560,100 in FY 2015-16. Where things get murky is how the money is divided up and why.
 
Take for example the Plymouth-Canton Community Schools (P-CCS). The foundation allowance in the FY 2015-16 budget was increased from $7,251 per pupil to $7,391…an increase of $140 per pupil. Adjusting for the elimination of other funding streams that were consolidated this year into the foundation allowance, the net increase per pupil for P-CCS is $36 per student.
 
But that does not tell the whole story. In addition to an increase in the foundation allowance, the State increased the amount of money put toward the Michigan Public School Employee Retirement System (MPSERS). This fund pays the retirement benefits earned by our public school employees.
 
Up until 2011, payments were made to MPSERS directly from the foundation allowance funding given to schools. In order to shore up a system that was about to spiral out of control and eat up a significant amount of the foundation allowance funding, the Legislature capped the amount of liability to school districts and began paying money directly into MPSERS. The amount of money being directed to that account has increased every year since then in order to maintain the retirement benefits of our school employees
 
Over the past five years under Republican leadership in Lansing, the State contribution to the MPSERS on behalf of the employees in P-CCS has increased over $658 per pupil. Had the MPSERS funding liability for schools not been capped and state funding increased, our schools would have $658 per pupil less to spend than they do now.
 
One final point to consider is the administration of the funds that have been provided to the school districts. Against the backdrop of declining enrollment on the order of 1,115 students since 2011, P-CCS has added over 15 administrators.
 
Was it truly necessary to add 15 more people overseeing operations, or might that money have been better spent hiring 15 new teachers or increasing the pay of current teachers? Ultimately, that is up to the school board and parents to decide. However I would encourage greater transparency and cooperation from the board with our entire community. It seems instead that some members of the board are deflecting from an examination of their actions and seeking to blame Lansing for perceived funding cuts or parents that choose to send their students to charter schools.
 
Rather than lament the fact that many parents are choosing to send their kids to charter schools, I believe that the responsible course of action would be to determine why parents choose to do so. Once these reasons are understood, it is up to the board and other school officials to shape the education environment to address their concerns. When they do so, they will stem the exodus of students and force charter schools to improve their performance as well. In other words, everyone wins.
 
While my colleagues and I continue working in Lansing to simplify the most complex state budget of them all and find ways to direct more dollars to the classroom, I encourage district residents to expand the discussions at the local level. I believe that all of us who believe in public education should not only examine how much money is coming in to our schools but also how that money is being spent. Together, we can make sure that we all remain focused on our funding priority – the classroom. When we do this, we will provide our kids with the quality education that they need for their future success.

-Senator Patrick Colbeck

MorningInMichigan.com
*Photo by Darlene Dowling Thompson
Next Meeting

There will be no monthly meeting in July, our next meeting will will take place at 7:00 PM on Monday August 24th at the Canfield Community Center in Dearborn Heights.
Chairman's Corner 

On June 17th I had the privilege of attending New Detroit's 17th Annual Closing the Gap Awards Dinner. Award recipients included former Speaker of the Michigan House of Representatives Paul Hillegonds, along with 3 other highly deserving Metro Detroit individuals and organizations.

The Michigan Republican Party was well represented, including State Party Chairwoman Ronna Romney McDaniel, and County and District Chairs from Oakland, Wayne, Wayne 11th, Wayne 12th, 11th District, 12th District and 14th District.

Have a safe and Happy 4th of July, I look forward to seeing everyone at the upcoming County Fair.


-Dillon Breen 
Chairman, Wayne County Republican Committee
L-R WCRC Chair Breen, Bill Milliken Jr, & MRP Chair Ronna Romney McDaniel
Happy Independence Day!
Join or renew a dues paying membership for 2015 and receive a free button!
(available at our monthly meetings)
July Events:

Canton Republican Club's Thirsty Thursday
Thursday, July 9, 7:00 PM. Canton Brew Works, 8521 Lilley Rd, Canton, MI 48187

11th Congressional District Annual Picnic
Saturday, July 11, 1:00 - 5:00 PM. Boulan Park, 3671 Crooks Rd, Troy, MI 48084

Dearborn/Dearborn Heights Republican Club Annual Picnic
Thursday, July 16, 6:00 - 9:00 PM. Ford Field Park, 22051 Cherry Hill St, Dearborn, MI 48124


State Committee Meeting
Friday/Saturday, July 17-18. Lansing Area

Canton Republican Club July Meeting
Saturday, July 18, 8:30 AM. Rose's Restaurant & Lounge, 201 N. Canton Center Rd, Canton, MI 48187


12th Congressional District July Meeting
Tuesday, July 21, 7:00 PM. Leon's Family Dining, 23830 Michigan Ave, Dearborn, MI 48124 (tentative date)

11th Congressional District July Meeting
Wednesday, July 29, 7:00 PM. Suburban Collection Showplace, 46100 Grand River Ave, Novi, MI 48374
Elected Officials:

Governor
Rick Snyder
Lieutenant Governor
Brian Calley
Secretary of State
Ruth Johnson
Attorney General
Bill Schuette
US House
David Trott (11)
State Senate
Patrick Colbeck (7)
State House
Laura Cox (19)
Kurt Heise (20)
Patrick Somerville (23)
County Commission
Terry Marecki (9)
Joe Barone (10)
The Wayne County Republican Committee

Chairman:

Dillon Breen
1st Vice Chairwoman:
Cheryl Costantino
2nd Vice Chairman:
Jim Rhodes
Treasurer:
Pauline Montie
Secretary:
LuAnn McGowan

Representative Members:

11th Congressional District:
1. Symantha Heath
2. Paul Cusick
3. George Gostias
4. Dillon Breen
5. Abe Munfakh
6. John Pastor
7. Daniel Pawlak
8. Richard Sharland
9. Carla Testani

12th Congressional District:
1. Connie (CB) Clark
2. William Beddows
3. Joan Strawser
4. Luann McGowan
5. Pauline Montie
6. Keith Steffke
7. Loretta Wilson
8. Laurie McHugh
9. Eric Johnson

13th Congressional District:
1. Mike Adams
2. Tim Brown
3. Patrick Gaffka
4. Gerry Hermann
5. Tawn Beliger aka Lemon James
6. Jeremy Mejia
7. Mark Quaine
8. Jim Rhodes
9. Christal Smith

14th Congressional District:
1. Cheryl Costantino
2. Matt Schonert
3. Joe Sucher
4. Guy Foremski
5. Mark Corcoran
6. Mayra Rodriguez
7. Walter Koppy
8. Steve Mazur
9. Christopher Kolomjec
For an archive of previous newsletters, please Click Here
The 31st Biennial Mackinac Republican Leadership Conference will be held from September 18-20 at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island. Reserve you place now at: 
http://www.mackinac2015.org/
Watch: First Lady Sue Snyder's "Let's End Campus Sexual Assault" Summit from June 8th Click Here
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3701 Harrison, Trenton, MI 48183