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Pugh On Budget: ‘We Want To See The Money’

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DETROIT (WWJ) – The budget impasse between Detroit Mayor Dave Bing and City Council is still dominating discussions among city officials.

Detroit City Council President Charles Pugh said on Wednesday that $50 million in additional cuts to the Mayor’s budget may not be necessary if Council determines that Bing’s claims of $36 million in new revenue are real.

“We’ve got to have an intelligent discussion to make sure that this money can be used to reduce the deficit,” said Pugh.  “All I want is that we are responsibly reducing the deficit every year, and that we are cutting and spending responsibly every year as well until we can get to a point where we have a balanced budget.”

WWJ’s Florence Walton reported whether Council will stick to an earlier plan to cut an additional $15 million from Bing’s budget, or reduce its cuts to $20-million, based on $36 million in revenue the Mayor said he had acquired from DTE and state revenue sharing.

On Monday, Pugh said the main focus of this week will be on that $30 million Bing brought to the table.

“We want to see the money.  We want to see the bank account,” Pugh said.

Nevertheless, Pugh said it is all about responsible budgeting.

“If we as the Council budgets responsibly, then we can avoid emergency management because we are being responsible,” said Pugh.

Bing said the Council’s cuts will force him to lay off police and fire and close some recreation centers. Council members have called Bing’s assertions “scare tactics.”

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