Detroit is struggling with high deficits and debt. The city has been operating in consent agreement with the state of Michigan, but a recent state report said that may not be enough to prevent bankruptcy. Gov. Rick Snyder said he will appoint an emergency for Detroit. City officials plan to file an appeal against emergency management. Detroit Mayor Dave Bing said Wednesday that he won't support the council's appeal. The Detroit News reports that the mayor said it was time to "stop BSing ourselves." He wants to work with the state to move Detroit in a better direction.
Bing Agrees to Work With Emergency Manager
An emergency manager has complete control over city finances. He can make sweeping changes without any second opinion. He takes over the reins from city government. According to the Detroit Free Press, council members who oppose emergency management say it takes away a citizen's right to vote. From opposing state takeover of finances, Bing now said, "We need to end the drama and infighting and understand that whether we like it or not, an emergency financial manager is coming to Detroit." He said he accepts that the governor more than likely will appoint someone to take over and that he plans to work with that person. The Detroit News says Bing admits he didn't come to this position easily, but that as leader of Detroit, he has to make difficult, unpopular decisions.
Bing Says He's Picking His Battles
Bing says it's not like he's handing over city keys to the state. According to the Associated Press, after meeting with Gov. Snyder in Lansing recently, the mayor said takeover is inevitable. Bing said he's not backing down from a fight: "I'm not stupid. If I know I'm going to get in a fight that I have no chance of winning, why in the hell should I get in that fight? I'm much better off walking away from that and fight another day." Bing asserts that Detroit leaders have a habit of fighting so much that they end up quarreling among themselves and hurting the city in the process.
Bing Disagrees With Parts of the ReviewThe mayor doesn't agree with all of the February review team findings, says the Associated Press. The team determined that the city had no plan to deal with looming financial emergency. Mayor Bing also questioned whether Detroit should be accountable for the city's 36th District Court budget problems. The court owed $279 million in outstanding accounts receivable debts. The city is owed $199 million of that amount. Court officials thus far haven't done anything to cut expenditures and budgeted for a staff of 285 while maintaining 350, the state review team found.
A teacher and native of Michigan, Marilisa Sachteleben writes about people, issues, and events in her state's most pivotal city of Detroit.