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      Scott recall, Flint's financial woes headline MidMichigan politics in 2011

      State politics quickly mixed with Mid-Michigan politics during Governor Rick Snyder's first year in office.

      Gov. Snyder worked to keep former state representative Paul Scott from being recalled.

      Scott's support of across-the-board cuts to public education drew the ire of the powerful Michigan Education Association.

      Snyder put his support behind the embattled legislator, making phone calls to constituents in the 51st District in the days leading up to the November election.

      However, on election night Scott was recalled by less than 200 votes.

      "I understand why they were coming after me. I was very outspoken about the need to reign in government spending and give taxpayers a return on their investment, instead of just throwing money at programs that sound good,"said Scott, the morning after the election.

      Scott has not ruled out running for office at some point in the future.

      The election to fill Scott's seat will be held in February 2012.

      In Flint, the city's $15 million deficit caught the attention of Snyder, who appointed a state panel to review the city's finances in September.

      The panel released its findings on election night, just hours before Dayne Walling was re-elected as mayor of Flint.

      "They are very dire in the sense that the budget deficit is very large and the cash situation is not good," said Snyder.

      In late November, the governor appointed former Flint mayor Mike Brown to be the city's emergency financial manager.

      Brown issued a number of executive orders over the next few weeks, which included taking away the salaries of Walling and the city council.

      Brown eventually restored 60 percent of Walling's salary and his full benefits, and 30 percent of city council's pay.

      As we enter 2012, Flint's Fire and Police departments have yet to be addressed.

      Brown could still terminate both union contracts, which would most likely lead to more layoffs.