A pair of bills introduced by state Rep. Peter Lucido address the status of emergency managers when it comes to bonding and immunity.
House Bill 4861 requires emergency managers to post a bond of at least $5 million, and causes the bond to be forfeited if the emergency manager is found to be grossly negligent in execution of their duties.
House Bill 4861 and 4862 exempt emergency managers from governmental immunity.
“In this state, we make requirements of people who are in certain trades to be licensed, bonded and insured before they take on any jobs involving third parties,” said Lucido, of Shelby Township. “If an emergency manager is doing work under the direction of the governor, that manager should be bonded so that taxpayers never have to foot another bill for a malfeasance of duties or when individuals who are appointed aren’t performing up to the standards of a private practice.”
The bills are reintroductions of bills Rep. Lucido filed in his first term in direct response to the information which came out of the actions of various emergency managers during the Flint water crisis and the Detroit Public School bailout.
“In a case such as Jerry Ambrose, who is being sued individually by the state for his role in the Flint water crisis, my bills would provide a bond which could be seized when gross negligence happens,” said Lucido. “This protects taxpayers. These bills are a straight reintroduction because I want to see oversight, but I want it to be responsible oversight. Whether it is accountants, lawyers or someone taking charge, that individual or group of individuals must perform professionally. More importantly, they must be able to pay if there is negligence or misconduct so that the taxpayer is not the one who pays.”
House Bills 4861 and 4862 have been referred to the House Committee on Local Government.