/ Commentary: Why We Must Not Re-elect Mike Duggan for Mayor

“From Herb Strather, a Once Loyal Super Supporter”

 

Rationale of why I selected Mike Duggan – the right person for the time

In 2013, everyone knew we needed good municipal management, and Mike Duggan was the ideal candidate.  He got the DMC Hospital system back on track financially. Therefore, I reached out in hopes of influencing him into running for Mayor; He agreed.  So, I gave him a campaign office in Tower Center on Grand River and Greenfield and donated the maximum legal contribution.  I also lobbied at a number of churches on his behalf and made a strong case as to why we needed to elect “Mike for Mayor.”  Make no mistake, this cost me a few friends and even more colleagues and I am NOT apologizing for fighting hard for Mike’s Mayorship.  It was the right thing to do at the time. The city is now bustling with new construction in targeted communities and lots of new millenniums. However, the impact on African American Detroiters is far more devastating with more than $320,000,000 in equity loss from illegal property tax foreclosures during the last 8 years and NO plans by Duggan to restore the losses.

Times have changed dramatically

 

Fiscal matters are more under control, but not for African American families. In general, Black people face a deplorable state of epic proportions. Our population is more than 75% African American making us the largest concentration of Black people in North America, yet we own less than 15% of gross business economy in the city. Other nationalities are thriving as a result of Black consumerism. Black people primary businesses are hair salons, soul food restaurants, and manual car washes while holding less than 1% of gas stations, grocery stores, liquor stores and 10% of Dispensaries. Furthermore, Black people do not realize or do not care about the dispositional economic impact happening in front of their very own eyes.

We must retire Mike Duggan because…

  • Duggan’s administration knowingly and illegally foreclosed on tens of thousands of lower-income African American homeowners for non-payment of property taxes which they were legally not required to pay and Mike knew it. About 16,000 of these homes were acquired at Wayne County Tax Auctions by “New Detroiters” and others from around the world, making a huge $300 Million dollar profit to Wayne County & Detroit. Michigan Supreme Court in Rafaeli vs. Oakland County ruled this year that local governments cannot keep profits from tax foreclosures and must return the excess proceeds to the former homeowners. This case is making its way through the Court of Appeals to determine if compensation should be retroactive. The administration has received more than $800 Million from the feds. How much will go toward restoring lost equity owed to those that have suffered under this Administration as opposed to funding the paving of bike lanes for residents in Duggan’s targeted communities?

Anthony Adams believe, we should restore ownership to Detroiters that have lost homes under these circumstances. He would start by allocating some of the American Rescue Funds to restore illegally  loss ownership, he believes in a preference on all Detroit Land bank Homes to those impacted.

  • Duggan gives preferential treatment to people he identifies with most. For example, Russell Woods between Dexter and Broad Street receives funding, while streets between Dexter and Linwood does not.  (Thank God for GM recent $50M grant for 48206). Grandmont – Rosedale was another targeted area. Funding stopped in the center of the community at Asbury Park instead of Grand River. Same with 48221 – funding stops in Bagley and does not extend west of Wyoming

Anthony Adams, believes we can easily develop the adjacent areas where African Americans and other disadvantaged citizens live Block by Block (contiguous) without scattered sites that will not amount to wide-scale or distinguishable redevelopment.

 

 Anthony Adams believes redevelopment efforts should be linked together and not intentionally focused on new groups at the expense of native Detroiters who have lived here, paid their taxes and labored here their entire lives.

 

  • Duggan sold and financed the majority of downtown to one person. Dan Gilbert is Duggan’s main man and close friends states they are related. He now owns the majority of downtown Detroit with billions in public financing by the DEGC AND Opportunity Zone Funds slated for Detroit neighborhoods and Detroit Public Schools funds. Never in history has this happened to any city in America be it predominantly black or white. Because good people, practices and policies would not allow such a thing to occur. The question becomes whether or not Detroiters will actually endorse this practice by reelecting Duggan.

Adam would not allow any person or entity to receive more than 10% of a public funding pot period!

  • Black Lives Matter, Black Wealth Matters, Black Homeownership Matters, and most importantly, the Next Generation of young Detroiters Matter! Therefore, by definition Black Political Leadership matter. I have been blessed with a wonderful family and more than 55 Godchildren. I am fighting “The Good Fight” for their future, for your children and grandchildren’s future, and for the future of every young person we know, care for, and love.  It takes a village.  Collectively, we are the village! The question is whether we will stand together to protect their future.

In summary, what we need in times like these is a fundamental shift in municipal management, and quantifiable answerability.  We need someone that is a part of our communities’ landscape that will tell it like it is and honestly talk to us about our shortcomings while providing tools, resources, and equal opportunity for correction!  We have an obligation to “Level the Playing Field!”  I cannot help but to wonder how many future Dan Gilberts would be possible if Anthony Adams was Mayor.

Am I a fool to write this story?

Duggan is a well-funded, vengeful, political strategist aligning himself with local pastors, distributing funds to their projects or naming streets after them and taking photo ops surrounded by misinformed African Americans. Some of my well-intended colleagues think I am foolish to write such a story exposing Duggan – After all, he has control over millions of dollars that can certainly help complete high-profile projects that have been sitting far too long on Detroit’s busiest streets. However, as a community and Youth Advocate (being President Elect of the Detroit Association of Realtors and having built 150 Optimist Clubs). I cannot look at the Duggan’s political glitter and say nothing about 1/3rd of a billion in losses suffered by my people. Hell, I would rather die first than not fight the Good Fight for my community and little kids like me. So, I do not care about political backlash. I declare I am a child of God and he did not create me to be foolish or fearful

Let me admit that I am not the only person that feels like its Time for a Change ng of Guard is an absolute necessity. Interestingly, there were 4 African Americans on Duggan’s Executive Committee in 2013, a brilliant young Harvard Graduate as campaign manager, a well-known pastor with a church on Woodward, a prominent contractor on E. Jefferson, and me, a real estate developer & Coach.  Out of us 4 former supporters, Duggan might get one dishearteningly vote.  Simply put, we know too much and will NOT knowingly contribute to the demise of our own community!

We have the Power!

This election is about whether or not we have the will power and commitment to take back our city, regain respect and level the playing field ensuring that African Americans who loss their homes are restored. communities are simultaneously redeveloped; no one’s relative or any person can take the majority pot of public funds and entitlements.  We owe this to the next generations just as our parents demonstrated for us.  Yes, Duggan has a boatload of campaign funds from all the major companies in & outside of Detroit, but they cannot vote – WE can! In the words of our beloved civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” Support and vote for Adam  Contribute to: anthonyadamsformayor.com now

Unconvinced? Then type in this link and read this story

https://www.propublica.org/article/how-a-tax-break-to-help-the-poor-went-to-nba-owner-dan-gilbert

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