WIXOM, Mich. (AP) – Gov. Rick Snyder on Friday stopped short of saying he would send an emergency manager to Detroit if a review team gives an unfavorable report on the city’s poor finances.
Snyder participated in a town hall-style meeting at Detroit Public Television studios in Wixom. The governor said he hopes Detroit Mayor Dave Bing, other elected officials and union leaders can fix it without state intervention. Detroit’s budget deficit is estimated at about $200 million.
“I want them to come to a conclusion that works for them,” Snyder said. Noting that city officials were making process, he added: “I just hope they can complete it in a timely fashion that really works.”
Bing has said he expects to develop a plan to deal with the city’s finances, though the review team appointed by the Snyder administration is expected to give its report within 30 days. An emergency manager would have extraordinary powers to sell assets, cut spending and make elected officials powerless.
“I’m going to do my job,” Snyder said. “I’ll do what I need to do to represent the citizens of Michigan.”
About 50 people attended the hour-long meeting at the TV studios Friday, two days after the Republican delivered his State of the State address.
Detroit was among several topics that Snyder covered. He also answered questions about job growth, K-12 education spending, a possible second bridge between Detroit and Canada, transportation and the economy.
The economy is showing “very positive progress,” the governor said. “Part of the positive feedback that’s happening right now is the auto industry.”
It is important “to have them be stable and sustainable and growing on a long-term basis,” Snyder said of automakers. “And they’re doing a really nice job.”
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)