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Petitioning Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette

We Want The $130 Million #MeekhofSenateBuilding Investigated! Michigan Deserves Better

Michiganders across our great state are in the process of asking Attorney General Bill Schuette for his formal opinion on the controversial $130 million #MeekhofSenateBuilding. What can be done to stop it? Is it legal?

The state did not seek an assessment and is paying MILLIONS more than the real value of the property, almost triple! All in a sale that benefits a power-player donor with deep ties to Lansing! It's an outrage.

The $130 million for the #MeekhofSenateBuilding would pay for $86 for every kid in Michigan schools, could fill 5.2 million potholes, or could result in a $13 refund check issued to every Michigander!

History proves Schuette's opinion could be a game-changer.

In 2010, when another shady deal involving many of today's players over the Michigan State Police building was an issue, Mike Cox's opinion that the state could get out of the lease changed the entire trajectory of the debate, though Lansing didn't have the courage to do what's right.

Sign the petition and Tell Lansing we WON'T get fooled again. Support WMP's request for an investigation by Attorney General Bill Schuette! Don't Michigan families deserve better than the shady new #MeekhofSenateBuilding?

>>>WXYZ says:

"The Michigan Senate drastically overpaid for new office space purchased from a politically-connected developer, according to Lansing's assessor of record. William Fowler told Channel 7's Ross Jones that the $41 million purchase price isn't supported by the current real estate market in downtown Lansing.

"Based on everything you know, is this building anywhere near worth $41 million?" asked Channel 7's Ross Jones.

"Not in today’s market," Fowler said, calling the sales price "three times greater than anything that has sold downtown of comparable use."

Fowler says that his office currently has Capitol View assessed at about $12 million, a figure he says is closer to what it’s actually worth. Were it to be built brand new today, his office estimates it would cost just under $22 million.

Fowler says his office won’t use Capitol View’s sale price as a benchmark for assessing other properties downtown.

The building has been dubbed the "Capitol View boondoggle" by Democratic lawmakers, and even though the project was pushed through by Republicans leadership, even many Republicans have a hard time defending the purchase.

"I don't think anybody's excited about it," said Rep. Al Pscholka (R-Stevensville). "I don't think anybody likes it."

But like it or not, barring some last-minute maneuver, Michigan taxpayers will be on the hook to pay for all of it: $41 million for the building, as much $10 million to fix it up and, when you add on 30-years of interest, a total cost of about $134 million.

Sen. Arlen Meekhof (R-West Olive) is the Senate Majority Leader in Lansing today. He wasn’t in charge when the Senate made the deal to buy Capitol View last year, but he did support it. When we visited his offices last month, he wouldn’t talk to us about Capitol View. Instead, his office sent out Meekhof's spokeswoman, Amber McCann.

"(The assessor) said that the $41 million is substantially higher than he thinks the building is actually worth," Jones told McCann.

"Okay," McCann replied.

"Does that trouble you at all?" Jones asked.

"I’m not troubled by his opinion, he’s entitled to his opinion," McCann said.

"But doesn’t that make you feel like you maybe should have gotten that appraisal?" Jones asked.

"At this point, I don’t feel like an appraisal was necessary," she replied."

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