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State House still working on Detroit Public Schools bailout

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Steve Carmody
/
Michigan Radio

State legislative leaders are still trying to reach a deal on a bailout for Detroit Public Schools.

All the action on the bill took place behind closed doors Wednesday, with few specifics leaking out.

The $600 million package reportedly includes $150 million in new start-up funding.

But House Minority Leader Tim Greimel, D-Auburn Hills, is upset that Democrats and Detroit lawmakers have had no role in crafting the plan.

“It’s completely inadequate and doesn’t make any of the reforms that are needed to really get the Detroit Public Schools district back on its own two feet again,” Greimel told reporters after Wednesday’s legislative session closed.

State House Speaker Kevin Cotter dismisses the suggestion that Detroit lawmakers need to be more involved.

“Are you suggesting that if these Detroit members won’t vote for it we should just go for bankruptcy and put everybody on the hook?” Cotter asked reporters as he stepped off a state Capitol elevator.

A Republican spokesman insist a final plan is “very close”, but work on the bill continues.  

Meanwhile, House Speaker Kevin Cotter laments, “How tough should it be to give somebody $600 million?”

State lawmakers will try again Thursday.  

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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