Review Ordered For Highland Park; Ecorse Given More Time To Fix Statement

Oct 21, 2013

A financial review board has moved the city of Highland Park closer to a takeover or some other form of state intervention.

The Michigan Public Radio Network’s Rick Pluta has more. 

A preliminary review found Highland Park’s debts have grown so big, the city could sell all its assets and would still be unable to meet all its obligations. 

Deputy state treasurer Tom Saxton sits on the board.

“Obviously, it says that they’re struggling and they didn’t get there overnight,” he says.  “It’s just one of those contributing factors that says they’re under financial stress.”

Saxton says there are big issues with pension funding and water bills. Highland Park has been under some version of state receivership since 2002. The board also looked at the Ecorse school district’s finances. It says the district is making sufficient progress in tackling its budget issues.

Michigan currently has eight cities and school districts being run by state-appointed emergency managers. One of them, Detroit, is also in federal bankruptcy court.