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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Mayor Bing is playing politics with layoff and other threats, Detroit City Council says

DETROIT - MAY 11:  Former Detroit Pistons' sta...Image by Getty Images
City of Detroit Mayor Dave Bing (D) is in
a battle with the Detroit City Council on how
best to address a $200 million dollar budget

Detroit City Council continues to remains skeptical of Mayor Dave Bing's effort to increase funding for the 2011-12 city budget. The budget, which included $50 million more in spending reductions than Bing requested, became law last week after Council overrode the mayor’s veto.

Yesterday, Bing announced that without modifications the budget will force the city to layoff police officers, close recreation centers, reduce bus service, end summer Hart Plaza festivals and shut down the People Mover.

The Council today accused Bing of playing politics by releasing "worst-case scenario" options in response to a budget the Council says is necessary to fix the $200 million structural deficit.

During Council’s public comment session, President Pro Tem Gary Brown said Bing’s layoff threat was “irresponsible.” Council President Charles Pugh went a step further later in the session.
“It’s really disappointing that the mayor sat at the other end of this table during his budget address and said no politics would be played, yet he put together this list of all of the worst case scenarios and gave it to the media and to the public to scare people,” said Pugh. “When he said there will be no politics, I just wonder what he thinks that is?”
At issue remains the Bing Administration’s to include an additional $30 million – $10 million from additional state revenue sharing and $20 million from receiving early money from a DTE Energy escrow fund currently scheduled to be delivered in 2014 – into the budget.

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