* The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
Tuesday, October 28, 2014 -3
The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom Tuesday, October 28, 2014-3
New program aims
to increase hiring
of disabled workers
Gov. Rick Snyder is directing
state agencies to make it a goal
to hire people with disabilities
and mental illnesses.
The governor issued a direc-
tive Monday that all executive
agencies participate in a new
program designed to attract
and retain disabled employees.
Snyder's move stems from rec-
ommendations made by a men-
tal health commission that he
created last year.
Lt. Gov. Brian Calley, who
chairs the commission, told
reporters on a conference call
that the state of Michigan must
"lead by example" so other
employers follow. The goal is
boosting overall integrated
employment of disabled employ-
ees while keeping their personal
with murder after
A 50-year-old woman is
charged with first-degree mur-
der in the beating death of a
66-year-old woman in a subur-
ban Detroit apartment build-
The Wayne County pros-
ecutor's office said Monday that
Tewana Sullivan of Detroit will
be arraigned Nov. 6.
Livonia police arrested Sul-
livan on Wednesday night after
officers found the severely beat-
en victim unconscious in the
building, west of Detroit. Sulli-
van was visiting a relative in the
She was charged last week
with attempted murder, and the
prosecutor upgraded the charge
after the victim died Saturday.
* gay marriage,
A Methodist pastor who was
disciplined after he officiated at
the wedding of his gay son will
be allowed to remain an ordained
The Judicial Council of the
nation's second-largest Protestant
denomination ruled Monday that
a Pennsylvania church jury was
wrong to defrock Frank Schaefer
last year after he would not prom-
ise never to perform another same-
The council ruled on technical
grounds and did not express sup-
port for gay marriage in general.
Its decision is final.
Reached by phone after the deci-
sion, Schaefer called it "amazing."
He said he was pleased, "not
just for myself, but for everyone in
the LGBTQ community and the
church. This is a positive decision
that keeps the dialogue going.
They didn't bar a person who is an
outspoken activist and who has
said that, if asked, he would per-
form another gay marriage."
banned from Iraq
by senior official
The United Nations special
investigator on Iran is not fazed
by a senior official's announce-
ment that he is banned from the
country, saying on Monday, "He
loves banning me."
Ahmed Shaheed also told
reporters he was "shocked" by
the execution Saturday of Rey-
haneh Jabbari, a woman convict-
ed of murdering a man she said
was trying to rape her. He said he
had repeatedly raised concerns
about the fairness of her trial.
He spoke a day before present-
ing his report on Iran to the Gen-
eral Assembly's human rights
committee, where he is expected
to speak out against the coun-
try's second-highest rate of exe-
cutions in the world.
Daily wire reports
From Page 1
Bennett gave thorough expla-
nations of each of the more con-
tentious topics within the plan of
He spent a good portion of
his time Monday discussing
the feasibility of the plan, high-
lighting the two major quali-
fications: that the city meets
its financial obligations and
be able to recover and provide
adequate city services. Bennett
walked through the previous
evidence presented to the court
again, noting the assessments
made by Mayor Mike Duggan
and the city offices that deter-
mined that the city is prepared
to provide services.
Rhodes questioned Bennett
about possible risks that could
threaten the feasibility of the
plan, including unknown vari-
ables such as as a new mayor
and his administration. Bennett
noted such variables are diffi-
cult to predict. He said the worst
thing that could happen "is if the
$1.7 billion is misused or per-
ceived to be misused."
Bennett reviewed the viabil-
ity of increasing property taxes
on Detroiters to help repay
creditors. He used a "depart-
ment store analogy" to explain
why the city believes raising
taxes would hurt Detroit. He
said when people decide where
to live, they will compare the
taxes and services of cities. Ben-
nett argued that higher taxes
could give individuals incentive
to leave Detroit, which would
further decrease the city's tax
base and, in turn, level of servic-
es. Bennett said the more central
question is whether or not taxes
should be reduced.
Rhodes also specifically ques-
tioned Bennett about the topic of
long-term pension recovery. The
two discussed the projections
for the plan, noting the possi-
bility that pensions could fully
recover eventually but acknowl-
edging the complicated math
and many variables that can
affect the plan's outcome.
While Rhodes already made
the decision that the Michigan
Constitution's stated protec-
tion for pensions does not carry
more weight than any other con-
tract agreement within the U.S.
Bankruptcy Court, he returned
to the topic Monday in his line
of questions for of Bennett. One
individual objector pressed the
issue, addressing some of the
minor. details of the Michigan
Constitution's requirements for
In his explanation of the DIA
settlement, Bennett addressed
three major questions: whether
the city is able to sell the DIA's
assets, whether liquidated assets
can be used to pay creditors and
whether the city should be com-
pelled to sell assets at all.
Bennett said due to restric-
tions on the DIA's art as part of
a charitable trust, among other
restrictions, itcannotbesold. He
added that there is no legal obli-
gation for the city to liquidate all
its assets to pay off obligations.
He also said the DIA serves as
a "nationally prominent cul-
tural institution," maintaining
it could also potentially draw
people back to the city. Bennett
argued the $466 million pledged
through the grand bargain is the
best possible outcome for the
Under the grand bargain, the
DIA would no longer be owned
by the city. Funding from the
DIA, the state as well as non-
profit and for-profit organiza-
tions would prevent the sale of
DIA artwork and reduce cuts
to pensions. Though creditors
argued failure to sell the art
unfairly discriminated against
them as compared to pensioners
- initially believing more money
could have been generated by
selling the art - major creditors
have since signed on to deals in
which they are compensated in
Bennett expressed confidence
in Rhodes' expected decision
regarding the DIA, saying he
intends to return to Detroit after
the bankruptcy as a tourist.
"I'm not in a rush; I under-
stand the DIA will be here for a
while," he said.
Other speakers Monday were
Steve Howell, special assistant
attorney general for the state of
Michigan, representatives from
various city pension organiza-
tions and three dissenters.
Howell said the plan of adjust-
ment is in the best interest of
creditors. He said it is a chance
for the city to move forward
and grow, and called for this
"unprecedented opportunity" to
be approved by Rhodes.
From Page 1
income individuals. Medicaid is
funded by both the states and the
federal government, and is admin-
istered by each state. States were
not required to adopt a Medicaid
program, but every state currently
has a program in place.
The ACA increased federal
funding for Medicaid, but also
required that states would pay
10 percent of the expansion by
2020. Then, in 2012, the U.S.
Supreme Court ruled that states
could continue to receive their
original funding for Medicaid
without expanding the program.
As of now, a little over half of the
states -27 states and the District
of Columbia - have chosen to
Researchers from the Uni-
versity Medical School analyzed
data from the first 100 days of the
Healthy Michigan Plan, during
which there were surprisingly
high levels of enrollment.
Prof. John Ayanian, director of
the Institute for HealthcaretInno-
vation and Policy, coauthored a
paper in the New England Jour-
nal of Medicine that analyzed
early data from the expansion.
In its first few months, the plan
enrolled over 327,000 people,
more than were predicted to
enroll in the entire year. By Oct.
20, 2014, the number of enrollees
had reached 424,852.
Ayanian suggested some rea-
sons for the plan's early success.
One reason is the late rollout of
the plan. Most state Medicaid
expansions began Jan. 1, 2014.
Michigan's did not begin until
April 1, 2014. Ayanian said these
extra three months allowed
state officials to communicate to
people that they were eligible for
assistance. The extra months also
gave the state more time to pre-
pare the plan's enrollment web-
site, ensuring its efficiency. An
efficient website was especially
necessary due to the initial prob-
lems with HealthCare.gov - the
ACA's online insurance market-
place - that were widely publi-
cized in the media.
"The key state officials made
it a priority to test the computer
systems that were required to
enroll people to make sure they
were working effectively before
enrollmentbegan," Ayanian said.
Ayanian said Michigan's suc-
cess could also serve as an exam-
ple to largely Republican states.
Historically, Republicans have
opposed the expansion of Med-
icaid. While Michigan generally
votes Democratic in the presiden-
tial election and is represented in
the state has a Republican gover-
nor and Republicans control both
houses of the legislature.
other states that have Republican
governors or legislatures and have
reservations about expanding the
Open Enrollment for 2015
insurance coverage under the
ACA will begin again Nov. 15.
This year, the Healthy Michi-
gan Plan will also be in place
throughout the Open Enroll-
ment period. Carrie Rheingans,
project manager for the Washt-
enaw County Health Initiative,
said HealthCare.gov will inform
Michigan residents who qualify
for benefits under the Healthy
Michigan Plan. These individuals
can then go to the plan's website
to register for saidbenefits.
"HealthCare.gov points you
in the direction you need to go,"
Lastyear, Michigan had notyet
expanded Medicaid when Open
Enrollment ended. For this rea-
son, Rheingans said low-income
individuals could not sign up for
the expanded benefits until after
having registered for their insur-
People already enrolled in
the Healthy Michigan Plan will
also see a change in the coming
months. Previously, no one regis-
tered under the plan would have
to pay any fees, excepting copays,
which would usually be only $1 or
$2 per month. Now, if an individ-
ual falls betweenl100and138 per-
cent of the federal poverty level,
he or she will have a monthly fee
in addition to copays. This fee
begins sixmonthsafter one starts
receiving services through Med-
icaid, and the amount is based
on how much healthcare one has
received over the past six months.
"Those folks will also be asked
to make what they're calling
'monthly contributions' to their
health insurance," Rheingans
said. "They've looked at the cost
of all of it and what quantity of
services you're using, and they
make an average over those six
months to say that's about how
much you should be paying every
month going forward for the next
Rheingans said though the fee
should be low for most people,
it still may cause difficulties for
the people it affects, especially
because many in this income
range do not have bank accounts
through which they can easily
pay the fees.
"It's hard to know what is
'expensive,' because folks who
are between 100 and 138 percent
of the poverty line, it's not like
they're rich people," she said.
"It's still yet another payment,
and people have to have a bank
The open enrollment period
for this year extends from Nov.15
to Feb. 15, 2015. During this time,
individuals can sign up for a new
health insurance plan or look at
options for switching from their
current plan. 2014 Marketplace
plans will expire Dec.31.
Students can get information
about healthcare optionsthrough
campus resources, such as Uni-
versity Health Service, or com-
munity resources, such as the
Washtenaw County Health Ini-
tiative. Information is also avail-
able online at HealthCare.gov
From Page 1
tive of that. I supported our pre-
sumptive mayor. Does that mean
that I don't have my own mind?
There are two other new
members who will take their
seats on the Council in 2015:
Westphal, who ran against
Nancy Kaplan, a member of
the Ann Arbor District Library
Board, for the seat vacated by
Petersen; and Graydon Krapohl,
who ran uncontested for the
open fourth ward seat follow-
ing the retirement of Margie
Teall (D-Ward 4).
"I have become acquainted
with the incoming new council-
members," Westphal said. "I've
had some interactions with
Christopher in the past in his
duties as a councilmember in
the past, and I am hoping it will
be the case that everyone con-
tinues to be civil on Council and
works for the best of the com-
Following the mayoral pri-
mary, which included four cur-
rent councilmembers, some
see the possibility for tension
between those members who
will continue to serve on Coun-
cil. If elected mayor in the gen-
eral election, Taylor, who won
the primary with 47.57 percent
of the vote, will serve alongside
former primary opponents Bri-
ere and Kunselman.
Kunselman, who received
16.46 percent of the vote, said
following the primary that he
looks forward to working with
Taylor and fellow councilmem-
bers in the future. Kunsel-
man and Taylor have served
together on Council since
2009, though in the 2008 elec-
tion, Kunselman lost his seat to
Taylor. Kunselman ran again in
2009 and has been on Council
"There's no sense of dread,"
Kunselman said. "I'm keeping
a very open mind and I think
Council dynamics are going to
continue very much how they
have been, where there are
issues that are more important
to some members than others
that eventually results in com-
In a mayoral debate earlier
this year, Briere said she does
not consider herself aligned
with anyone in particular on
Council, including Hieftje.
"I don't belong to a faction,"
Briere said. "John is gone and
we should get over it. Now we
look at the future. As much as
we may like John or agree with
his policies, I'm not running
against John and I'm not run-
ning to beat John."
However, the question on
voters' minds may not have
been whether Briere was
running against Hieftje, but
rather whether she was going
to make decisions similar to
Hieftje's. Taylor has aligned
himself indirectly with the.
former mayor since the begin-
ning of his mayoral campaign,
and his near-majority victory
illustrated that a desire for
change was not driving voters'
"I don't expect our govern-
ment to change much, I expect it
to fine-tune around the edges,"
Kunselman said. "The biggest
change is that when you no lon-
ger have the longest-serving
mayor presiding over, there's
going to be a learning curve for
everyone, even for Chris Taylor,
assuming he is the next mayor.
We are going to have to learn
how to identify others' posi-
tions within Council."
Though new to the Council,
Grand served with Taylor on
the Park Advisory Commission
and said she is not concerned
that there will be any linger-
ing tensions following election
"I'm not really concerned
about the councilmembers
that ran for mayor; I don't
think that's what is driving the
dynamic," Grand said. "I'm hop-
ing with a new mayor and some
new councilmembers that we
can try to get rid of some of these
old divisions. I'm not naive about
that, but I certainly want to do
my best to compromise."
From Page 1
ing to perform their job func-
tions unless they voluntarily
confirm their disability.
"We have to make it clear that
any fitness for duty policy will
only apply to faculty with men-
tal or physical illness that keeps
them from adequately perform-
ing their duties," Masten said.
"There's no way to meet both
the ADA requirements and cover
only physical and medical condi-
tions if (this interpretation of)
the ADA is right."
He added that working to cre-
ate a policy that suits the needs of
the University while complying
with ADA standards will contin-
ue to be a group effort, and that
the next step is getting a second
opinion from a "foremost expert"
in the Law School.
Masten then compared the
proposed language with that of
the University's existing fitness
for duty policy, which currently
applies to all University faculty
and staff. Fitness for duty is cur-
rently defined as "being physi-
cally and mentally capable of
safely performing the duties of
their job," and implies that any-
thing outside of those standards
constitutes "unfitness for duty."
"Either the current policy is
not compliant with the ADA,
which, who knows, maybe it was
just never updated, so if we don't
agree to implement the new fit-
ness for duty policy, we'd be bet-
ter off with (the ADA's version)
than the one we currently have,"
Masten said. "Part of the reason
for the new policy was it doesn't
encompass all the considerations
that would go into an appropriate
consideration for faculty, but at
least this one is limited to mental
and physical conditions."
Most SACUA members agreed
that there was a need for specific
language regarding mental and
physical conditions since those
are the main reasons for which
a fitness for duty investigation
would be opened initially.
Pharmacy Prof. David Smith
saidhe feltthe abilityto"safelyexe-
cute one's duties" should be the key
requirement for being classified
fit for duty, leaving out mention of
specific mental or physical health
such requirements might make the
language more in accordance with
ADA standards, but many other
members wanted to keep the lan-
guage in the revised policy.
Smith added that there are
other probable factors that could
potentially render faculty mem-
bers "unable to perform essential
functions" outside of mental and
physical complications, but it was
deemed that most other suggest-
ed behaviors would dictate "will-
ful refusal," which would amount
to insubordination, a cause for
termination that does not apply
to any fitness for duty policy.
"There are experts who can
provide examinations for medi-
cal issues, mental and physical,"
Masten said. "If it's a non-med-
ical issue, who's going to make
Currently, non-medical issues
are at the discretion of the dean
of the faculty member's college,
who would then open an inves-
tigation to determine whether
the individual is capable of con-
tinuing to work. The group con-
cluded that this process could be
seen as "arbitrary" and that they
wanted to work toward a more
"We'd have a lot less concern
about this if we were having
medical professionals making
this call," Masten said. This led
to discussion about excluding
those without physical or mental
limitations from the protections
of the policy.
Next Monday, SACUA will
be joined by University Provost
Martha Pollack. The following
week, theywillhave theirmonth-
ly check-in with University
President Mark Schlissel at their
regularly scheduled meeting.
From Page 1
ing college more affordable and
In terms of affordability, he
said his first initiative would be to
decrease the recent trend of the
University's budget being cov-
ered more by tuition and endow-
ment and less by the state. He
said if the state bears more of the
costs, tuition could decrease.
"I would like to see the state
of Michigan reinvest in the Uni-
versity of Michigan and in public
education," he said.
Closely linked to the cost of
higher education, Behm said
affordability could be improved by
increasing access to need-based
loans. Currently, one-third of stu-
dents attendingthe state's 15 pub-
lic universities receive need-based
loans,yet, accordingto Behm, only
12 percent of University students
receive this type of aid.
"I do not think that is an accurate
reflection of the picture of what the
student body should be here," he
said. "That needsto be fixed."
To improve affordability,
Behm said the University could
tap into its endowment - which
reached an all-time high of $9.7
billion in the 2014 fiscal year - to
keep costslow and could also look
to federal legislation to lower the
borrowing rate for student loans.
As a Flint native who works in
the city, Behm said he also feels a
responsibility to advocate for the
University's satellite campuses in
Flint and Dearborn.
Though the two campuses have
typically been less residential
than Ann Arbor, Behm noted how
when a dorm was built forthe first
time at Flint in 2009, it immedi-
ately filled to capacity. He linked
this to a changing culture of satel-
lite campuses and their potential
togrow in the near future.
"Those campuses really offer
an opportunity for the Univer-
sity of Michigan to interact with
the students and communities of
Flint and Dearborn," he said.
With respect to diversity,
Behm said the University must
work toward increasing racial
diversity on campus, but within
the boundaries of Proposal 2, the
2006 voter initiative that banned
the consideration of race in
admissions, among other factors.
He said the percentage of Black
students thatmake up the student
body is far less than the number
of Black citizens in the state.
"This is a public University; it
serves the mission and the people
of our entire state, not just some
of the people," he said. "We need
to fix that problem."
Behm also expressed a will-
ingness to work with students
to make the activities and deci-
sions of University administra-
tors more transparent. In July,
The Detroit Free Press sued the
University for violating the open
Meetings Act, arguing that the
Board of Regents makes most of
its decisions in private.
Behm said he plans to meet
with students and faculty regu-
larly during his tenure on the
board, noting thatthe best way to
bring a perspective of the issues
facing students and faculty is to
interact with them directly.
"That's what makes an institu-
tion work, is open communica-
tion," he said.