A former long-time auditor for the City of Detroit says he’s not surprised the city is running out of cash. “I was a Detroiter, still am at heart, for 49 years,” Harris said. Joe Harris also served as Detroit’s auditor general from 1995 to 2005. He’s been the state-appointed emergency manager in Benton Harbor since March 2010.
Detroit Mayor Dave Bing and other city leaders stood side-by-side at city hall Thursday night, saying they’re all ready to work together.
The show of unity comes as the city scrambles to stave off a state-appointed emergency manager. Governor Snyder has threatened to send in a financial review team that would initiate that process if the city doesn’t get its act together.
That’s legislation Clarke has proposed that would divert federal taxes collected in Detroit into a trust--about $2 billion annually over five years. That money would then be used to finance jobs and infrastructure projects.
Critics and allies alike say Detroit Mayor Dave Bing's proposal to get the state to pay the city more than $200 million faces an uphill battle.
It’s one of the ideas the Mayor has outlined to keep the city from going broke.
In 1998, Detroit lowered its city income tax in exchange for guaranteed levels of state revenue sharing. But city officials say the state reneged, and shorted Detroit about $220 million it was promised.
Bing says that would be enough to erase the city’s structural deficit, and the $45-million shortfall the city expects this year.
The Detroit City Council appears to be standing firm in an ongoing battle with Mayor Dave Bing over how much to cut from the city’s budget. The Council wants to cut more from the budget than Bing to chip away at the city’s roughly $155 million accumulated deficit. But Bing says that’s irresponsible.
Detroit Mayor Dave Bing has raised the stakes in his ongoing budget battle with the Detroit City Council. Bing and the City Council have been sparring over how much to shave off the city’s budget. The Council wants to cut $50 million more than Bing. Last week, the Council overrode Bing’s veto, meaning its budget is set to go into effect July 1. But Bing says those extra cuts “won’t solve” the city’s fiscal crisis.
The city of Detroit faces a projected $155 million budget shortfall in the coming fiscal year, so cuts are needed.
Mayor Bing's budget original budget proposal had $200 million in cuts.
Detroit city council presented a budget that went further, adding $50 million more in cuts.
Bing vetoed the council's budget, saying their cuts go too far. Here's a video of Bing, with a dramatic pause, signing the veto order:
The city council then voted 8-1 to override Bing's veto.
So that's where the city stands now.
Mayor Bing hopes council will reduce the amount of cuts by June 30th (the city's next fiscal year starts July 1).
If council doesn't compromise, Bing says drastic cuts will have to be made.
From the Associated Press:
Detroit Mayor Dave Bing says $50 million in city council-approved cuts to his $3.1 billion budget proposal will force him to close two recreation centers, two swimming pools, restrooms at city parks and the beach at Belle Isle... [and] some fire stations also could close and events at downtown's Hart Plaza could be shut down.
If council doesn't withdrawal the reductions by the June 30 deadline, Bing said, he'd have no choice but to shut down the People Mover, eliminate 24-hour bus services, end sponsored events at Hart Plaza, close Belle Isle beach, shutter two recreation centers and cut police who patrol the streets, among other things, on July 1.
The cuts also would dampen chances of light rail along Woodward and hamper the police department's compliance with federal requirements to end brutality and civil rights violations.
Council Pro Tem Gary Brown is quoted as saying he won't entertain any last minute deals:
"Where is the sense of urgency?" Brown said, pointing to an accumulated deficit that he says could exceed $200 million this year. "We are in a crisis. All I hear is whining and crying about what the City Council is doing, instead of working to fix the problem."a
Mayor Bing said the "unprecedented" cuts and could lead to more people leaving the city of Detroit.
*correction - an earlier post incorrectly stated the override vote as 8-9. The vote was 8-1.
The Detroit City Council has voted to override Mayor Dave Bing’s budget. The City Council added $50 million in additional cuts to Bing’s budget. By overriding his veto, they put those cuts into effect. Bing blasted the Council afterward, saying the cuts will lead to public safety layoffs. He also says their action could move the city toward a takeover by an Emergency Manager. City Council President Charles Pugh called that assertion “idiotic.”
Detroit Mayor Dave Bing has vetoed the city council’s budget proposal for the fiscal year that begins July 1.
Detroit City Council trimmed an additional $50 million from the budget plan submitted by the mayor. Many members said they were not convinced the mayor’s revenue projections would hold.
Mayor Bing says the council’s plan would have resulted in layoffs in public safety, jeopardized Sunday bus service, and forced the city to return millions of dollars to the federal government. He says the council was bent on enacting drastic cuts to send a political message:
"But our fiscal crisis is too important to become just another political battle where no one wins."
The mayor and council members will spend the next few days on Mackinac Island for an annual policy conference hosted by the Detroit Regional Chamber. The island has been the site of many political deals in the past. But if a compromise is not struck, the city council could vote to override the veto next week.
The city of Detroit is ramping up efforts to cobble together a budget and a five-year deficit elimination plan. Detroit City Council members got a copy of Mayor Dave Bing’s deficit elimination plan Tuesday. The Council wants more cuts than Bing proposed. They say that’s necessary to avoid a possible state takeover of the city’s finances. Council President Charles Pugh says a Council work group believes the city should cut at least $120 million from the upcoming budget.
Both the Detroit City Council and Mayor Dave Bing say this is a crucial week for getting the city’s budget in order. Detroit will end the fiscal year in June with a budget deficit of at least $180 million. Both Mayor Bing and the Council declare they’ll work together to avoid a state takeover of the city’s finances. Both say much of that will depend on whether city unions and pension boards will agree to concessions.
The Detroit City Council heard some advice about the city’s budget situation Tuesday. Council fiscal analyst Irvin Corley told them that Mayor Dave Bing’s proposed budget is “mostly reasonable.” But Corley also warned that Bing’s proposal contains more than $200 million in “soft” revenue that might not materialize. Corley says the Council should cut the Mayor’s budget further, and the two sides need to find an agreement that truly addresses the city’s fiscal problems.