The week of May 7th was a very busy time for the Michigan Taxpayers Alliance. Starting at 7am on Monday morning, the volunteers of the MTA set out on their mission to inform the citizens of the cities of Plymouth, Northville and Wayne about some substantial tax hikes passed by the state House and their state representative, Marc Corriveau.
The focal point of the tax hikes was a 3000% + hike in a garbage dumping fee that will increase the cost for everyone to dispose of their garbage. With this information in hand, the volunteers began following garbage trucks and an 11 foot, half ton pig named, 'Mr. Perks," through the neighborhoods to tape literature onto the trash cans of the unsuspecting taxpayers in Rep. Corriveau's district. The mornings of the following days were spent the same way, informing as many people in these key cities as we could.
In addition to taping flyers onto the trash cans of taxpayers, we also got many small businesses to display 'Un-Wanted" posters featuring Representative Corriveau on and around their stores to inform their customers of the tax hikes on services, alcohol and tobacco. We were very well received by store owners who were eager to inform the public of how the taxes will hurt everyone.
As you can imagine, this type of protest got some attention. It isn't everyday that people see an 11 foot pig being pulled through their quiet neighborhood. By the second day, the press had caught wind of the developments and were on the scene. In addition to local coverage by the Plymouth Observer and the Northville Record , The Detroit News and the Detroit Free Press also covered the event. The Detroit News had this to say:
"Anti-tax protesters hit the pavement Monday morning, attaching poster-sized missives to about 2,500 trash carts in three Wayne County communities knocking state Rep. Marc Corriveau's support of a recent bill to boost taxes on Michigan trash. Michigan Taxpayers Alliance will continue voicing its disapproval in the 20th House District, said former state Rep. Leon Drolet, who chairs the nonprofit. The alliance, which posted the fliers on trash carts in Plymouth, Wayne and Northville, criticizes Corriveau's support of a bill that would increase the state's trash tipping fee to $7.50 a ton from 21 cents. "Lansing only cares about their budget problems," Drolet said. "Smacking a 3,000 percent fee on garbage collection will slap a giant fee increase on citizens." Corriveau, D-Northville, the first Democratic representative for the district in 37 years, said he was upset by the stunt, but not surprised. Corriveau said the bill, passed in the House in April, will stop out-of-state trash from "literally streaming across our borders." Michigan took in 6.3 million tons from Canada and states last year, state figures show. "You'd think it's election time," said Plymouth City Manager Paul Sincock. "It's politics and, unfortunately, not resolving the issues in Lansing.""
In addition to great print media coverage, we were also covered by Channel 4 News out of Detroit with a very flattering segment. See for yourself at: