Detroit City Council holds 1st meeting since EFM appointed

Detroit City Council meets with EFM Kevyn Orr, renames April budget 'recess' week

Published On: Mar 26 2013 05:23:14 PM EDT   Updated On: Mar 26 2013 07:38:40 PM EDT
Detroit City Council President Charles Pugh
DETROIT -

On Tuesday, the Detroit City Council held its first meeting since the appointment of an emergency financial manager.

The Council members face an uncertain future. However, they still face the same work load, for now. Every April members take a week away from the table to begin crunching budget numbers. It's always called a recess, but not anymore.

"Because what we're really doing, it's not like we go to Fort Lauderdale for a week, what we do is we take this week to basically do a deep dive into the budget," said Councilman Ken Cockrel Jr.

This time, to reflect that they're on the job, the City Council will call the week a budget analysis development session.

"When you're under a microscope and people are gunning for you, you have to be very clear," said Council President Charles Pugh.

On Monday, Pugh and most other City Council members met individually with Emergency Financial Manager Kevyn Orr.

"We had a good meeting yesterday, he and I. He didn't write that law, although he is charged to abide by it, but it's really up to his discretion," Pugh said.

Lawsuits against the city of Detroit continue to drain precious dollars. The Council approved $500,000 in settlements on Tuesday including $95,000 for a man riding on a city bus which was rear-ended by another vehicle.

One Detroiter proposed an unusual way to wipe out the red ink.

"A national fundraiser for the city of Detroit to invest in Detroiters, to buy our city back out of this deficit. I know $200 million sounds like a lot," said resident Sonia Brown.

On Tuesday, Orr announced he will keep salaries and benefits in place for Mayor Dave Bing and City Council.

Read: Detroit EFM Kevyn Orr keeps City Council, mayor salaries