(Detroit) – Mayor Dave Bing’s comments managed to encapsulate everything that is wrong with Detroit leadership today while speaking about state intervention. Happy to take money from the state – even demanding it, but disgusted at the thought of the state having any input in how that money is spent.
The problem with that line of thinking is that Detroit is the one asking for the handout, so they don’t get to make the rules. The City of Detroit has already shown that they are completely incapable of maintaining Belle Isle, and now that the State has offered to restore and maintain the park, the city wants to dictate the terms.
The City Council (as always) isn’t helping. In a city with out of control violence, streetlights that have been out for years, not enough police and fire, inadequate EMT support and a dysfunctional government that has never been able to mange their own budget – they voted 5-4 to ask Bing not to let the state manage Belle Isle.
Which of course begs the question, if they can’t take care of Belle Isle, and they don’t want the state to take care of Belle Isle, what exactly do they propose to do in order to restore the park to its former glory? As usual, the answer is – nothing. The City Council would rather maintain control over the park and let it continue to deteriorate as it has for years, rather than allow the State to make fools of them yet again.
That’s right, the City Council does not want to fix Detroit, they simply want to maintain their power in Detroit. The only consistent exception to this has been Gary Brown, but he’s outnumbered and rarely gets enough support to minimize the damage repeatedly done to the city, by the Council. This should come as no surprise to the residents of Detroit, after all they voted in several council members that couldn’t even pay their own bills, why would they expect them to be more responsible with other people’s money?
One proposal was for the state of Michigan to lease Belle Isle from the city of Detroit for 99 years, with the state maintaining the park, but Mayor Bing shot that proposal down.
“Even if we thought about signing something like that, it’s got to come with some conditions,” he said. “What are you going to invest? What are you going to fix? … tell us that.”
Bing also took issue with Governor Snyder offering to use state money to demolish abandoned houses and state troopers to help patrol Detroit. Bing said regarding the abandoned houses “that’s us, that’s our responsibility”. Then why is the city having such a hard time taking care of their responsibilities? The state is offering to tear down houses and patrol the streets, and Mayor Bing would rather risk the safety of city residents than accept help from the state.
And that encapsulates the cancerous idiocy that has run Detroit into the ground for the last 40+ years.