Wayne County projects COVID-19 to cause at least $152 million deficit

Officials work on post-coronavirus recovery plan

DETROIT – Wayne County officials project the county’s revenue will be down at least $152 million due to coronavirus (COVID-19).

Executive Warren C. Evans announced Tuesday that the deficit could be more than 20 percent of the county’s projected revenues.

Evans said he was working with officials to update the two-year budget forecast that will assess every fund and department as well as evaluated potential investment losses in pension and other post-employment benefit plans.

The county is also looking at opportunities to restore funding through federal and state aid.

The framework for the county’s post-coronavirus recovery plan includes:

  • Tapping funds from the accumulated budget surplus/Rainy Day Fund and possibly the Delinquent Tax Revolving Fund
  • Deferring capital expenditures and renegotiating existing leases
  • Workforce reductions are a possibility though no current reductions have been identified

“Our main focus remains fighting the coronavirus spread as a public health matter. However, the county’s long-term health requires proactively planning for budget shortfalls created by this pandemic,” Evans. said “I am committed to working with other elected officials and the commission on fiscally-responsible solutions that allow us to continue providing essential services to our residents. Over the past five years, we have put our financial house back in order, but the on-going global pandemic and Stay Home orders are putting a tremendous strain on the county’s ability to fund essential services at current levels.”