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Detroit Mayor: Unpaid Furloughs Coming For City Workers

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(WWJ Photo/Stephanie Davis)

(WWJ Photo/Stephanie Davis)

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DETROIT (WWJ) - Detroit will not go bankrupt. That’s the word Wednesday from Detroit Mayor Dave Bing, amid the latest battle between his office and City Council.

Bing said there will be no payless paydays, but there will be consequences  after City Council rejected a proposal to have law firm Miller Canfield do work for the city.

“I’ve directed our administration to begin planning to offset the anticipated $30 million shortfall,” Bing told reporters. “In order to compensate the deficit, the city will begin to institute unpaid furloughs and other cost-saving actions effective January 1. These actions are necessary to keep the city from falling into further financial distress.”

Bing’s remarks came during a news conference one day after City Council rejected a proposal to have Miller Canfield do work for the city. Council members and the city’s top lawyer says the law firm has a conflict of interest because they were involved in writing the proposal.

Also speaking to reporters on Wednesday, was Detroit Chief Financial Officer for the city, Jack Martin, who said the administration will not allow the city to go broke. “We may have to initiate any number of cost-saving measures to avoid running out of money, but … the Mayor, the administration, we are planning to implement additional cuts to ensure that the city doesn’t run out of money,” he said,

Bing said he’s frustrated that nothing’s getting done.

“I’m interested in one thing and that is to make sure that our city is fiscally stable, and I’m not gonna get away from that… I don’t know why that we just can’t come together on some of the recommendations that we’re getting, said Bing.

We’ve agreed on 25 different initiatives — we can’t get ‘em all done at one time.  I’m looking at five or six different initiatives that if we focus on, it will move us forward and move us toward fiscal stability,” he said.

Council members and the city’s top lawyer said Miller Canfield has a conflict of interest because they were involved in writing the proposal.

Mayor Bing said he’s not sure what’s going on with City Council and that he’s not going to be dictated to by anyone about who will be his legal representative.   He said Detroit is at risk of losing millions of dollars after Council remembers rejected the Miller Canfield contract. (More on this here).

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