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There's good & bad news today about Lansing's city budget crisis

(photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio)
Lansing city council president A'Lynne Robinson (right) talks to the news media about the city's budget crisis, while council vice president Kathie Dunbar listens, outside the Southside Community Center

There’s mixed news today concerning the city of Lansing’s budget crisis.  City leaders have been trying to figure out how to deal with a projected 20 million dollar budget deficit.   

 N0w, city council vice president Kathie Dunbar says the city learned this week that its employee health care costs will rise 2 million dollars higher than expected next year. 

She says fortunately the state legislature has passed a budget plan that should guarantee the city 4 million dollars in state revenue sharing funds. 

“It’s welcome news and it can be used as a key part of solving our budget crisis as well as meeting the challenge of higher health care costs.”

The Lansing city council meets on Monday to approve next year’s city budget. 

The mayor’s office is hoping to win 3 million dollars in contract concessions from city labor unions to reduce the projected budget deficit further.    But city leaders say, even under the best case scenario, the city will layoff at least 60 employees,  mainly police officers and firefighters. 

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Radio since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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