87
      Wednesday
      89 / 66
      Thursday
      85 / 64
      Friday
      87 / 62

      EM law challenged in Flint

      Councilman Sheldon Neeley with NBC25's Dan Armstrong

      In Flint, residents are waiting to see if the emergency manager law will be suspended.

      Those opposing the EM law turned in more than 200,000 signatures to the state capitol Wednesday in hopes of giving power back to locally elected officials.

      The Bureau of Elections has 60 days to decide if there are enough valid signatures to put the EM law on hold.

      In the meantime, both sides are weighing in.

      For the first time in Flint the new emergency manager law gets a test.

      Public Act Four gave the governor power to appoint a manager to break contracts, sell public assets, and overrule locally elected officials.

      Flint resident Steven Floyd says, "I think the emergency manager is great. I think it's good that we have the emergency manager here to try to pull Flint out of the hole that we're in. We're in a deep hole."

      Others believe it's an attack on freedom.

      Flint Councilman Sheldon Neeley had his power and part of his pay taken away. He calls the law "unrighteous."

      "It's not so much of a salary or about Sheldon Neeley, but it's more about the citizens of the City of Flint and democracy all around America. If there are allowed to stand, democracy falls everywhere," says Neeley.

      Meanwhile, others say Flint is hanging by a financial thread and that the locally elected officials could not get the job done.

      "If they were doing what they are supposed to be doing, we wouldn't have to have an emergency manager," says Flint resident Bill Orr.

      Petition supporters say the hundreds of thousands of signatures show the passion and power of the people.

      "It says that a lot of people want their choice, they want their yes or no, they want their ability to make the decision to decide what kind of governing system do they want," says Shadeed Ameer, a Flint resident and member of Occupy Flint.

      There's still confusion as to what would happen if the signatures are approved.

      The governor and attorney general believe the law would revert back to the old emergency manager law, Public Act 72.

      Those against the EM say it should stop everything in its tracks until the public can vote on the matter in November.