The Interlocal Agreement

As noted above, the MQC3 was created through an interlocal agreement between the Michigan Department of Community Health and the Tri-County Aging Consortium. The validity of that agreement is doubtful.

The Michigan Constitution requires that an interlocal agreement be signed among “two or more counties, townships, cities, villages or districts.” It does not appear, however, that an agreement between TCAC and the DCH would satisfy the constitutional requirement. The DCH is a state agency. Even if the TCAC, which operates in a three-county region, could be considered sufficiently “local” to somehow meet the constitutional definition, it is only one local agency. An interlocal agreement requires at least two.

If the MQC3 was improperly constituted, it could not have legally served as the public employer in the unionization of in-home caregivers or of any subsequent collective bargaining agreements. The in-home caregivers unionization as public employees of the MQC3 itself would be invalid.

Outside this concern, the formation of the MQC3 raised policy questions. TCAC was an agency that had previously focused exclusively on the elderly.[51] According to the initial interlocal agreement, the MQC3 was able to serve only the elderly until the TCAC modified its charter, which occurred in April 2004.[52] TCAC did not appear to have expertise in the provision of in-home caregiver services to disabled adults statewide, though this was the MQC3’s purported area of competence.