If you are still scratching your head trying to figure out why companies like VW would pass over Michigan when deciding where to put a new billion dollar production facility, look no further than W.I. Meyers Nursery in downtown Detroit.
The Detroit News reports that:
A plan to turn over an abandoned City of Detroit nursery to a nonprofit group that would use it to grow trees for neighborhoods and parks has been blocked by union objections.
The Greening of Detroit, under an agreement approved by Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and the City Council, would manage the W.I. Meyers Nursery, a 125-acre plot in Rouge Park that has been closed for more than three years.
Using privately raised funds and volunteers, the group would restore the nursery and use it to provide mature trees to neighborhoods. Greening already plants 2,000 trees a year throughout the city.
But the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees [AFSCME] obtained an injunction from Wayne County Circuit Court against the deal, saying it violates the collective bargaining agreement. The union says the bargaining agreement applies to any deals to turn over control of city operations to a third party — meaning city workers must staff the nursery.
Someone should tell AFSCME that the “Greening of Detroit” shouldn’t mean the greening of AFSCME’s pockets.