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Report: Detroit residents want cash compensation for over-assessed properties

Detroit skyline.
Lester Graham
Michigan Radio
Detroit skyline

A new report shows Detroiters have strong opinions about how they should be compensated for millions of dollars in over-assessed property taxes.

In a Thursday press conference, Detroit City Council President Mary Sheffield and the Coalition for Property Tax Justice said people want cash compensation.

Sheffield said that's not possible.

"We have been told from our legal department, our corporation council — and these documents are public — that unfortunately we cannot use general funds to compensate individuals that were-over assessed," Sheffield said.

Sheffield said she is taking the issue to the state level in order to try to compensate homeowners.

Sheffield outlined possible programs for people whose homes were overtaxed.

"Possibly giving out free or discounted Detroit Land Bank homes, setting aside units in affordable housing projects or Section 8 vouchers for those who may have lost their homes, helping with small business development for those who were impacted," Sheffield said.

Sheffield said the city council has budgeted $6 million in the upcoming budget toward a compensation program.

Briana Rice is Michigan Public's criminal justice reporter. She's focused on what Detroiters need to feel safe and whether they're getting it.
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