Haven't heard this argument used yet, but.....
Link to November 5 Sheboygan Press guest editorial, "Permission needed to operate more efficiently".
Excerpt: The politics of the new law, however, are perfectly clear. The police officers' union and the firefighters' union lobbied hard to persuade Gov. Doyle and legislative leaders to include "maintenance of effort for emergency services" in the 2009-11 state budget. The union goal is to prevent city councils and village boards from reducing the number of police officers and firefighters on the municipal payroll.
Actually, there are many programs that enforce maintenance of effort requirements in order for an entity to be eligible to receive outside funding.