DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – Two downtown Detroit fountains that are a popular place to cool off in the summer months are shut down.
The Detroit Free Press reports vandals did more than $1 million in damage to Hart Plaza in January, leaving the Horace E. Dodge and Son Memorial Fountain inoperable.
Parks Department director Alicia Minter said fixing the fountain will cost $300,000 to $400,000 and the cash-strapped city doesn’t have the money.
Nearby, the General Motors Plaza fountain behind the automaker’s world headquarters at the Renaissance Center has been shut down since mid-June for maintenance issues. Officials said there’s no set date for when the fountain will be operating again.
This comes as Detroit’s finances are being run by a state-appointed emergency manager and the city has a $380 million deficit. Kevyn Orr says long-term debt could top $17 billion and is asking bond-holders to accept steep markdowns on what they’re owed.
Following a closed-door meeting with creditors last month, Orr said there’s still a 50-50 chance the city will file for a municipal bankruptcy.
A group of about 25 of those creditors was scheduled this week to take a bus tour of the struggling city, but the excursion was canceled — reportedly due to limited time too much media attention. Orr spokesman, Bill Nowling, said the creditors are spending time “conducting due diligence research into the city’s financial state while they are in Detroit.”
Orr was scheduled to meet Wednesday with the Detroit police and fire officials — along with city retirees to talk about plans to slash pensions and benefits.
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