News Story

What Michigan's Next Governor Can Learn From Oakland County

L. Brooks Patterson will be headline speaker at Mackinac Center reception in Birmingham

L. Brooks Patterson is well known on the dinner speaker's circuit.

"I've had so many chicken dinners over my career I don't even shave in the morning anymore," the Oakland County Executive recently wrote on his blog for the Michigan View. "I pluck."

Patterson will be the featured speaker at the "What Michigan's Next Governor Can Learn From Oakland County" event that is being put on by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy on Thursday, Oct. 14. It starts at 6 p.m. with the reception and the program goes from 7 to 8:30 p.m. It will be held at The Townsend Hotel in Birmingham. Tickets are $30 per person. To register, call the Mackinac Center at 989-631-0900.

Patterson is not one to hold back on his views.

While many environmentalists decried urban sprawl and many municipalities have spent millions of dollars to deter it, Patterson has a different take.

"I love sprawl. I need it. I promote it," he wrote on the Oakland County website. "'Sprawl' is the unfortunate pejorative title government planners give to economic development that takes place in areas they can't control. In reality, 'sprawl' is new houses, new school buildings, new plants, and new office and retail facilities.  'Sprawl' is new jobs, new hope and the fulfillment of lifelong dreams. It's the American Dream unfolding before your eyes."

But Patterson is more than just a good quote.

Oakland County's budget proposes a balanced budget from 2011 through 2013. They were able to balance the budget by having employees take a 2.5 percent salary reduction in 2010 and another 1.5 percent salary reduction in 2011. Salaries would remain unchanged in 2012 and 2013.

And Oakland County has saved $43.4 million since 1993 by privatization of such serves as jail food, the law library and dental services for low-income citizens.


Event details:


Thursday, October 14, 2010
Reception: 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Program: 7:00-8:30 p.m.

The Townsend Hotel
One Hundred Townsend Street, Birmingham, Michigan 48009

$30 Individual | $60 Couple

Cocktails and heavy hors d'oeuvres will be served.

To register, contact the Mackinac Center at (989) 631-0900 or register online.