Ecorse out of the red, financial emergency lifted

Joyce Parker steps down as Ecorse EM, transition board now in place

By Halston Herrera - Digital news editor

ECORSE, Mich. - Gov. Rick Snyder on Tuesday announced that the financial emergency in the city of Ecorse had been resolved and a Transition Advisory Board (TAB) had been appointed to help with keep the city's money on budget.

On Monday, Emergency Manager Joyce Parker notified the governor of her determination that the city's financial emergency has been sufficiently addressed. Parker cited several factors and accomplishments, including: elimination of a $14.6 million cumulative deficit and a $5 million structural deficit; reorganization of police and fire departments into one public safety department; reduction of operating costs by $4.3 million annually; increase of annual revenues by $2.3 million; evaluation and rebidding of all city services, which generated one-time savings of more than $2.8 million; receipt of more than $4 million in grants to support city operations and service delivery.

In addition, Parker worked with the state legislature to develop legislation that enabled the city to re-enter the bond market, borrow money to pay off outstanding judgment levies and increase the city's bond rating from "junk" to "A." 

Parker also initiated a strategic planning and training model for the community -- "Envision Ecorse." The effort was developed in conjunction with the Michigan Municipal League, the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan, and the Land Information Access Association to support growth and sustainability in Ecorse for years to come. A two-year city budget is also in place. 

Parker will continue to be involved in Ecorse, as a member of the TAB, effective May 1, 2013.

Other members include Ed Koryzno, administrator of the Department of Treasury's Office of Financial Responsibility (State Treasurer designee) and Rob Bovitz, a CPA and president of Bovitz CPA, P.C. (Department of Technology, Management and Budget director designee).

Parker will continue to in her role as emergency manager for the city of Allen Park.

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