There is a lot of public resistance to Detroit's consent agrement, a move that would allow the state to appoint an outside board of experts to take over the city's finances. The agreement is just a shade away from the state appointing one emergancy financial manager (EFM) who would also control the cities finances, the difference is, an EFM would be taking away more than union jobs-- he or she would toss the power of elected officials as well.
According to Mayor Dave Big, the cash strapped city only has three options: accept the concent agreement, get slammed with an EFM, or file for bankruptcy. While none of these options are good, Bing and the majority of city council members believe the consent agrement is the better of three evils.
And while nayways abound, who has offered viable options that would save the city aside from a true financial collapse?
One idea comes from U.S. Congressman Hanson Clarke, (D-13), who believes the city is eligible for a federal bailout, much like the one provided to GM and Chrysler.
The Huffington Post reports:
"Clarke said he plans to seek emergency federal aid in Congress and from the Obama administration and may introduce legislation as early as next week. His plan is modeled after the federal bailout of New York City in 1975. 'It's the same situation that's just as grave,' Clarke told HuffPost. 'We need to provide relief for the city of Detroit in order to create jobs in this country and rescue this symbol of our manufacturing power.'"
How likely is a City of Detroit bailout in the heat of a presidential election year? Not very. But hey, it's worth a try.
Wayne County executive Robert Ficano continued to defend his reputation this Friday morning at the Michigan Chronicle's Pancakes and Politics forum in Birmingham's Townsend Hotel. But he said he has no hard feelings about media coverage of the Wayne County corruption scandal despite tough scrutiny. "No, I am not going to resign," he responded when event host, Carol Cain, asked if he would step down under the pressure of having four former members of his administration facing federal corruption charges. "I have not done anything wrong."
When asked if he felt media coverage of the Wayne County scandal has been fair, he said he understands everyone has a job to do. "I recognize what the first amendment is all about. The media have a job to do and I don't resent it. This is the life I have chosen. I am a public official. With that comes scrutiny."
Ficano was a panalist along with fellow Metro Detroit leaders Detroit Mayor Dave Bing, Oakland County Executive Robert Ficano and Macomb County executive Mark Hackel.
Ficano also added that the important thing to keep in mind is that Wayne County is doing fine under his leadership, with a balanced budget and event a bit of surplus. "I've been a public offical for 30 years and doing a good job," he told more than 400 attendees at the forum. "Six months of difficulty shouldn't define me."
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