National League of Cities Statement on U.S. Bankruptcy Court’s Decision to Allow Detroit, Mich. to Proceed with Bankruptcy Filing
Washington, D.C. - The following statement can be attributed to Clarence Anthony, Executive Director, National League of Cities:
"In light of United States Bankruptcy Court Judge Steven W. Rhodes' decision today to allow Detroit to qualify for bankruptcy protection, we hope that all parties are prepared to find a quick resolution on a plan of adjustment that allows the city to restructure its debt and find a sustainable path forward.
"As Detroit moves forward in this process, we believe that local elected officials have a key role to play in resolving the city's financial difficulties and driving new investment. As the new leaders selected in the recent election prepare to take office next month, it is important that they have a voice in the decision-making process.
"We know difficult decisions lie ahead and that many people may be affected. A quick resolution will allow for further growth and greater opportunities for Detroit to prosper.
"It is also important to note that Detroit's situation is extremely rare and is due in part to long-term structural issues such as a dramatic drop in population. There were only 54 filings from 1970 to 2009 and only four of those were cities or counties. Today, municipal issuers are defaulting at their lowest rate in four years and municipal credit is improving following the recession of 2008.
"NLC's 2013 Fiscal Conditions Report shows that a vast majority of cities are seeing improvements in their finances. This is due to the changes many elected officials are making to ensure healthy balance sheets while continuing to meet the needs of the communities they serve."
The National League of Cities (NLC) is dedicated to helping city leaders build better communities. NLC is a resource and advocate for 19,000 cities, towns and villages, representing more than 218 million Americans.