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City Council, Mayor’s Staff Discuss Detroit Cash Crunch

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DETROIT (WWJ) - Detroit City Council and the mayor’s staff spoke Tuesday morning to avoid their own version of the fiscal cliff.

Bing made a brief statement over the telephone from San Francisco while fulfilling a day of service as part of a World Series bet with the opposing team’s mayor.

“I do understand that there are still some issues that we are trying to deal with – some financial stability agreement and the whole fiscal issue that we have been dealing with in the city since day one. Since my administration has been in play – we were in a financial crisis when I came into the city and we’re still there,” said Bing.

Deputy Mayor Curt Lewis spoke on behalf of the Mayor after the phone line cut off about the Miller Canfield dispute with city council: “I don’t know if we need to get into the issues with the law department … the head of the law department and the mayor do not see eye to eye … you can’t run an organization when your chief legal person is opposing you and you are on different sides of the issue.”

The Miller Canfield contract is one of the milestone requirements the state treasurer says Detroit must meet before the city can draw down bond money that is being held in escrow.

Council President Charles Pugh says they want to hear exactly where city hall’s stands on the money, what they have left, and what’s the mayor game plan, that includes more furlough days and layoffs.

Pugh says the council’s fiscal analysts have come up with a plan to avoid bankruptcy and an emergency manager that would see more layoffs, pay cuts and city workers paying more for health care. He also wants what he calls more substance and the truth behind the Miller Canfield contract tied to $30 million in bond funding for Detroit.

Financial analysts have said the city, which carries a budget deficit of more than $200 million,  could run out of cash before the end of the year.

Stay with WWJ Newsradio 950 and CBSDetroit.com for continuing coverage.

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