The Bridge is Safer, but the Straits Still at Risk

Dec 5. – Gov. Snyder and the legislature heard you. They have changed the position of the Mackinac Bridge Authority in the bill authorizing an oil pipeline tunnel in the Straits of Mackinac. A newly created authority is now underneath the MBA, leaving the Bridge open to liability.

There are still concerns about the safety of the Straits of Mackinac because the pipelines will remain in the open water for at least another decade. Stay tuned because the next bill is still being drafted.

For over 60 years, the Mackinac Bridge Authority has served as an independent body with one purpose: Look After the Bridge. Its independence has successfully ensured the reliability and integrity of Michigan's iconic and beloved landmark.

Until now.

Friends of Mackinac Bridge is a citizen’s group opposed to giving away the independence of the Mackinac Bridge Authority to look after a private Canadian oil pipeline company. A new bill in the Michigan legislature and proposals drafted behind closed doors of the executive office are shady, rushed, and very bad for Michigan.

When Gov. John Engler appointed me to chair the Mackinac Bridge Authority, he had one request of me: Look After The Bridge. I am alarmed at the proposed dissolution of the Authority’s sole focus on the bridge. A recently introduced bill has the potential to seriously compromise the MBA’s effectiveness in managing Michigan’s most significant asset.
Read his statement to the Mackinac Bridge Authority

William Gnodtke

Outgoing Chairman, 1997-2018, Mackinac Bridge Authority

I rely on the Mackinac Bridge to cross the Straits. I have come to know and trust the staff that works on the Bridge, and I respect the culture they have created based on their laser focus on maintaining the Bridge for the citizens of Michigan. With this move to add a private oil pipeline to their mission, I believe that culture will be diluted and erode. Michigan needs to keep the Mackinac Bridge independent of outside interests.

Chris Shepler

President, Shepler's Mackinac Island Ferry

The Mackinac Bridge must be protected from outside influences and undue political pressure, and remain the independent authority that has served travelers and the State of Michigan so well. Plans calling for the Mackinac Bridge Authority to own the proposed Enbridge crude oil tunnel beneath the Straits of Mackinac are ill-advised and not in the best interests of the Mackinac Bridge.
Read her statement about this proposed change

Barbara Brown

Board Member, Mackinac Bridge Authority

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