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The Fall of Detroit

December 4, 2013

The Fall of Detroit


Federal judge lets Detroit move forward with largest bankruptcy in U.S. history

( A Federal judge has formally declared that Detroit is bankrupt.

U.S. bankruptcy judge Steven Rhodes:

“It is indeed a momentous day… We have here a judicial finding that this once-proud city cannot pay its debts. At the same time, it has an opportunity for a fresh start. I hope that everybody associated with the city will recognize that opportunity.”

“An opportunity for a fresh start?” Translation: State pensioners will receive less than 18 cents on the dollar.

After years of fiscal mismanagement and government waste, Detroit is faced with $18.5 billion in debt.

The city:
– has 9,700 workers while 21,000 current retirees are drawing benefits.
– has 78,000 abandoned buildings.
– reports an average police response time of 58 minutes (Compared to 11 minute national avg.)
– is burdened with of $3.5 billion in unfunded pension liabilities and has unfunded health care liabilities totaling $5.7 billion.

And 40 percent of the city’s streetlights do not work.

Other municipalities across the country are studying the Detroit case closely. If the deep cuts to pension benefits stick, get ready for a wave of copycats.

Read More @ NYTimes

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