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Flint mayor proposes to 'shrink' city hall

The city of Flint is facing a multi-million dollar budget deficit.   And in his state of the city address tonight, Mayor Dayne Walling proposed ‘shrinking’ the size of city hall as one partial solution.

“I’m not giving up on Flint…and I know you’re not either"

Flint Mayor Dayne Walling spent much of last night address talking about what’s working in his city.  But he also talked about what he thinks would help the city deal with a growing budget deficit,  ‘shrinking the size of city hall.’   Walling wants to drop funding for some city commissions and eliminate some executive positions.

"My proposed changes would save the city of Flint $6 million over 4 years. Over $15 million dollars over 10 years. Its not the whole solution. But its an important part of it. Its an important part that makes a difference.”

Walling also wants to revise the city charter to eliminate two seats on Flint’s city council.    That didn’t sit well with Flint city council president Jackie Poplar.   After the speech she suggested replacing the mayor with a city manager would save more money.

"I’m not saying it’s the best way but if we look at council, let’s look at administration. We have to weigh in on both of these things. We have to look at the right and the left.”

Changing Flint’s city charter could take a long time.  In the meantime, the city may have trouble making its payroll next month. 

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public 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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