EM Kevyn Orr speaks on 1st report to Gov. Rick Snyder on Detroit's financial problems

Detroit's emergency manager Kevyn Orr: 'You can't argue with the numbers'

Author: Joanne Marie Hoopes, ClickOnDetroit.com writer
Published On: May 13 2013 02:49:40 PM EDT   Updated On: May 13 2013 07:18:09 PM EDT
Detroit's emergency manager Kevyn Orr
DETROIT -

Detroit's emergency manager, Kevyn Orr spoke on his first report, released to Gov. Rick Snyder Monday, detailing Detroit's financial problems.

The report says the city's expenditures have exceeded revenues from fiscal year 2008 to fiscal year 2012 by an average of $100 million annually.

UNCUT: Orr speaks on Detroit's report to governor.

"You may argue with the process, you may not like the emergency manager, all that kind of good stuff, but you can't argue with the numbers," Orr said on Monday. "Figures don't lie but liars can figure," he said. "I'm not trying to figure you, I am just trying to give it to you straight."

Orr said Chapter 9 is just another process to be used in the city if it comes to that. He says he hopes to avoid a bankruptcy and he believes he can tackle some of the problems draining the city.

When asked whether he plans on privatizing services in the city, Orr said "we are going to look at everything in the city" and says nothing has been ruled yet.

Orr said his plan is to not increase taxes, but rather to cut costs.

In a statement he said, "The 45-day report I have submitted is a sobering wake-up call about the dire financial straits the city of Detroit faces. No one should underestimate the severity of the financial crisis. The path Detroit has followed for more than 40 years is unsustainable and only a complete restructuring of the city's finances and operations will allow Detroit to regain its footing and return to a path of prosperity. This plan offers baseline from which the real restructuring work can begin."

The report was required 45 days into Orr's tenure to inform the governor of just how serious the city's financial problems are, and which areas need attention first.

Read Kevyn Orr's first financial, operational report

Key Report Points:

Orr say improving the quality of life for Detroit resident is "essential to any stabilization and revitalization of the City."

He says a plan to transition the Public Lighting Department's lighting responsibilities to a new authority and its power services to a third party are in process and will be part of the restructuring plan.

According to the report, the city is in the process of performing an in-depth departmental reviews to evaluate and improve efficiency and productivity.

The report also says the city is examining the potential of consolidating operations or outsourcing services. Doing so, Orr says, may require changes to the City's Charter and the City Code.