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State board finds fiscal emergency in Wayne County

Thomas Hawk
flickr http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM

A state review team has confirmed a financial emergency in Wayne County.

The governor will have 10 days to decide whether he agrees that Wayne County is in dire straits. But no one expects the governor will take that long.

“I would expect that the governor’s determination would come sooner rather than later,” said Michigan Treasury Spokesman Terry Stanton.

A “yes” determination would give Wayne County Executive Warren Evans a stronger position to get concessions from unions and the county commission.

Evans wants a state consent agreement to make health care and other cuts on unionized workers.

Evans says it’s true county workers have already faced cuts, but they haven’t been enough:

“The other end of the spectrum is, we’re broke and that’s also true. And so somehow, the fix has got to be in here somewhere.”

Evans, who requested the state review, says he does not expect the county to follow Detroit into bankruptcy.

Evans pegs the county’s annual budget deficit at around $50 million.

Sarah Cwiek joined Michigan Radio in October 2009. As our Detroit reporter, she is helping us expand our coverage of the economy, politics, and culture in and around the city of Detroit.
Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987.
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