Gov. Rick Snyder becomes latest $1-a-year Michigan executive

| Thursday, February 17, 2011
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Following the examples of former Chrysler Chairman Lee Iacocca, Ford Executive Chairman Bill Ford and former General Motors Chairman Rick Wagoner when their companies faced the abyss, Gov. Rick Snyder said this morning he would cut his salary this year to $1.

As I wrote in a recent column, it's usually a smart move for a CEO to take a substantial pay cut when asking others in an organization to sacrifice. Sure, Snyder can afford it, but essentially taking no salary for a year sends an important message that a CEO or governor truly believes in "shared sacrifice" to help fix serious financial problems in an organization.

Some other initial thoughts about Snyder's budget message:

--Snyder said fixing the structural deficit in the budget, simplifying the tax code and paying down debt are things that should have been done decades ago, going back to the 1980s.

Without naming names, he's essentially saying that governors and lawmakers from both political parties are guilty of poorly managing the state. Snyder has modeled himself as moderate in the mold of former Gov. William Milliken, whose years as governor mostly were in the period before Snyder said the tough decisions were ignored.

--Snyder has said restoring cities and emphasizing education would be top priorities as governors. But cutting revenue sharing, and education budgets betray those priorities, argues Michigan Future Inc. President Lou Glazer in his always insightful blog.

--If you're a teacher or government worker, you might at least be glad you're not living in Wisconsin. There have been huge protests at the state capital as Republican Scott Walker wants to mostly curtail collective bargaining rights of public sector workers. He's even put the National Guard on alert to respond in the case of disruption of state services.

1 comment:

Its All Just A Ride said...

Snyder is pegging his salary at $1 to signal how much we'll all be making by the time this slash-and-burn is through. I also like how he basically killed the Film Tax Credit. Nice. Classy. Way to kill one of the best hopes MI had for a new diversified economy. Hollywood of the Midwest, we hardly knew ye. We're the Wal-Mart state now. I think tomorrow's Groupon is 50% off schoolteachers.

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