Will Wayne County be appointed emergency manager?

$207 million budget deficit exists, Gov. Snyder watching closely

By Rod Meloni - Reporter, CFP ®


Local 4 has been telling you about the cash crisis in Wayne County for months and the latest numbers are telling.

A $207 million budget hole exists and it's not being ignored; Governor Snyder is watching from Lansing very closely.

County Commissioner Laura Cox talked to Local 4 Thursday on whether an emergency manager is needed in Wayne County.

Cox said not only is one needed, but she is going to personally ask Gov. Snyder to send one.

Tuesday the governor has this to say regarding that possibility, "I think it's important when you have an official making comments so that's something we could look into that we need to keep track of and be aware of, so it's something treasury will be monitoring."

It's important to note this is a highly political question to answer, still the governor did not say no to an emergency management in Wayne County.

Commissioner Cox was happy to hear the governor's response. She believes unlike Detroit and Bob Ficano who have tried to blame the traditional property tax government funding model.

"That is the problem in the City of Detroit as well, it's also a spending problem, we need to fix our spending and I think an EM can absolutely help us fix out spending," said Cox.

The Wayne County Commission spends much of its time frustrated with and talking about the budget problems of a $207 million deficit, pensions underfunded by 50 percent, bonds at junk status and a 2014 budget that balances on paper only. These issues are all possible emergency manager triggers and that doesn't even take into account a failed jail project that is $100 million over budget.

Read: Rod Meloni: Wayne Co. Jail and your right to know.

"I think we need an emergency manager or bold decisions," said County Commissioner Shannon Price. "We have been hitting all the red flags all the way along and I mean, it's not a matter of if, it's a matter of when at this point unless we start taking very bold moves to change course."

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