Detroit mayor points to 'signs of hope and possibilities'
In his State of the City address on Wednesday, Detroit's mayor focused on positive moves the city is making to improve its finances. Mayor Dave Bing said, 'It is time to transform the image of Detroit'. He suggested the state might do more to help the struggling city.
AP Photo/Detroit News, Ricardo Thomas
Mayor Dave Bing used his State of the City address Wednesday to highlight positive moves Detroit has made to address its financial woes and gave no hint as to whether he knows if the state is about to take over control of the city.
"The picture is not all doom and gloom," Bing said. "Every day there are more signs of hope and possibilities. We can't — and won't — give up on our city."
The city faces a $327 million budget deficit, cash flow shortages and the specter that Gov. Rick Snyder may soon appoint a financial manager over Detroit. A state appointed review team in December began taking a second look at Detroit's books, ongoing fiscal troubles and Bing's restructuring plans. That team is expected in the coming days or weeks to submit its report to the Republican Snyder. Snyder has said he will use that report in deciding whether an emergency manager will be placed over the city's finances.
Positive moves so far during Bing's first term include a $300 million reduction in city spending, about 3,700 fewer jobs on Detroit's payroll, more than $4 million in administrative cost savings by turning over many Health Department services to a public-private partnership, and a 7 percent jump in income tax collections.
Bing did use his address to point a finger or two at Lansing.
Detroit received $93 million less in revenue sharing last year from the state than it did in 2009 when he was elected mayor, Bing said.