It was in Michigan and Northville was a part of it Tuesday evening.
Gov. Rick Snyder, live from Lansing, answered questions before audiences in Northville, Grand Rapids, Adrian and Traverse City in a virtual town hall using the online site Google+. State representatives in those areas asked a series of questions submitted by the audience. In Northville, Rep. Kurt Heise (R-Plymouth) asked the governor questions about the proposed new bridge to Canada and roads infrastructure on behalf of Northville residents. The governor could see the crowd of more than 40 people and they could see him on a big screen.
Throughout the event – with some people nodding their heads in approval and others shaking heads in disagreement – the governor tied his responses to increasing jobs and economic recovery.
"We were truly a broken state with a broken government a couple of years ago," Snyder said. "We are coming back ... Hopefully you can see I'm pretty passionate about this."
Governor talks about new bridge to Canada
About the bridge, which would rival the Ambassador bridge and has been opposed vehemently by its owners, Snyder said: "If you want to trade with other people you need crossings, you need bridges."
He said the benefit, aside from the fact the terms call for it to be constructed at no cost to Michigan, is that it will sustain long-term jobs.
The agreement was announced recently by Snyder and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Plans for the bridge moved forward without the authorization of the state legislature, which the governor was questioned about Tuesday night. Snyder told participants that the legislature previously didn't touch the issue and that this was something the state's executive branch could create to combat unemployment.
"Canadians believe this project is going to be a big success," he said, adding that that advertisements run by the Ambassador Bridge interests are "misleading."
He also took credit for the recent decrease in unemployment to 8.5 percent in the state but said "I think we're still in crisis."
He said of constructing the bridge without legislative approval, "This isn't the time to be saying 'let's delay job creation ... The bridge doesn't involve tax payer dollars."
At least $1 billion needed to repair state roads, infrastructure, governor says
Snyder was asked by two people running for Northville Township office, current trustee Marjorie Banner and supervisor candidate Robert Nix, about funding road repairs.
"How many people like Michigan roads and bridges?" he asked participants, with no hands in Northville being raised. "Most people in our state don't."
He added, "We need to spend a billion to $1.4 billion to keep up our roads and bridges. That's a lot of money."
Snyder went on to say that the price tag, while it may cause sticker shock, is a necessary investment.
"It actually saves us money long-term," he said, likening it to performing basic car repairs and its effect on extending the life of a car.
Still, he said the problem cannot be solved immediately. He hopes two or three proposals will be ready for consideration in 2013.