Kudos to the Detroit Free Press for a powerful article that describes all to well the reality facing Michigan’s cities. The article titled, Want to fix Michigan cities?, appeared last Sunday. It points out what we have been saying, that Flint, Detroit, and other troubled communities are a symptom of a greater problem: a broken municipal finance system. In the article they state, “Flint’s the worst iteration of Michigan’s failure to care for its cities. City officials should never be looking over their books trying to find ways to save money on clean water. But those are the kinds of choices the state’s strained relationship with its cities demands local governments make. The trouble in Michigan’s cities has been a slow degradation of state support — which escalated during the gubernatorial terms of John Engler and Jennifer Granholm — combined with tight restrictions on the ways cities can find revenue for themselves.” That is it in a nutshell. We have decimated our cities through disinvestment, and we must chart a new course.
Please give the whole Want to fix Michigan cities? article a read.