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State of the City Address


rbdetsport

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I didn't watch it (I never watch tv), but I've read the text of the speech. It sounds more like a campaign speech than anything else.

Some highlights:

- 22 new downtown restaurants in past 3 years

- Crime reduced to lowest in 40 years

- Over the past 3 years, violent crimes have been reduced by more than 26%

- A new $20 million public safety mall in southwest Detroit will open soon

- New $30 detention facility to break ground soon

- Fox Creek development of 1200 acres is expected to begin this year

- $56 million NextEnergy Center at Wayne State University will open this spring

- Relocation of Le Farge Cement facility from east riverfront to Springwells Industrial Park in June

- 925 building permits issued in 2004

- Statler is old & ugly, and will be demolished next month

- Book Cadillac could begin this year if they receive a favorable ruling from HUD

- Doing engineering, environmental, & structural studies on Michigan Central

- Cobo expansion could cost as little as $670 million; KK urges cooperation among all metro cities

- Demolition plan to demolish 5000 houses failed

- DDOT is replacing 120 of the oldest buses, which date from 1998; new buses comply with ADA regulations

- Cut 3000 positions from city government; less overtime for city employees

- 64% of total budget is personnel costs

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I have yet to hear anyone in the media comment on the crime statistic that was just released and highlighted by the mayor in his speech the other night (lowest crime rate in 40 years). Think about it, 40 years ago this city still had more than 1.5 million residents (more?), where as today we have just over 900,000. Why is this statistic significant when in fact it is the same rate as it was 40 years ago based on crime per capita? Someone needs to enlighten me about this one because I seem to think this is just average for the city.

What happened with the crime reduction in New York City some 6-7 years ago was SIGNIFICANT.

Anyway, I'm now completely unconvinced that Kwamie can lead this city the next four years. His time's up after that unconvincing speech. Thank God Fox interrupted his speech so they could show American Idol........

- BR

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I have yet to hear anyone in the media comment on the crime statistic that was just released and highlighted by the mayor in his speech the other night (lowest crime rate in 40 years).  Think about it, 40 years ago this city still had more than 1.5 million residents (more?), where as today we have just over 900,000.  Why is this statistic significant when in fact it is the same rate as it was 40 years ago based on crime per capita?  Someone needs to enlighten me about this one because I seem to think this is just average for the city.

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It is not the lowest crime rate in 40 years. Rather, it is the lowest number of crimes that have taken place in a single year over any of the past 40 years. This obviously does not take into account the 900,000 or so people that have left the city limits since 1965. If you want to talk crime rates, we should have roughly the same number of crimes that we had in 1920. Obviously we are nowhere near that number.

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It is not the lowest crime rate in 40 years.  Rather, it is the lowest number of crimes that have taken place in a single year over any of the past 40 years.  This obviously does not take into account the 900,000 or so people that have left the city limits since 1965.  If you want to talk crime rates, we should have roughly the same number of crimes that we had in 1920.  Obviously we are nowhere near that number.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

But its still significant. You would expect for crime to rise because the people leaving the city aren't the criminals.

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What did Kwame Kilpatrick say in the State of the City Address last night?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I am a former metro Detroit resident who worked downtown. Though I haven't lived in Michigan for five years I keep up with what's going on there and did read a transcript of the mayor's speech. I was in the Motor City a couple of weeks ago and was really impressed with the new terminal at DTW and enjoyed a play at the Gem Theatre. I drove by Ford Field and Comerica Park. They are world class venues. Downtown is making big strides.

Nevertheless, I am deeply disturbed by the fiscal state of the city and especially city hall's continual whitewashing of the crime problem. I am convinced that crime is the root of Detroit's problems. White flight, poor schools, urban decay, unemployment - all are symptoms of the pervasive crime problem that has plagued the city for many years.

Until the city council and the mayor and the police chief and the Governor stand up and admit that crime, not the others, is the problem, Detroit will continue to lose people and have a nasty reputation. Before too long, the only people left living in the city will be a handful of singles and professional downtown and thugs roaming the neighborhoods.

I'm not a Detroit basher. Detroit holds a special place for me. I loved living and working there. I want to see the city prosper again. But until the powers to be fix the problem - crime - things will only get worse!

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Did mention any population estimates? Is the city finally stablizing? Needless to say, things are definately turning for the better. In my case, although I live in Florida, its very easy to see the progress being made during my annual visits. I'm looking forward to my next trip to Detroit.

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If only there was a proven way to "fix" the crime problem...

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First, admit its a serious problem. Second, insist that even minor crime (litter, vandalism, prostitution, etc.) is not tolerated. Third, force accountabiliy on the Chief of Police. Fourth, enforce the existing laws.

Of course, all of this is easier said than done. But other places (NYC) have done it.

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Yeah, those things would help even if they don't get rid of the majority of crime. It does seem like the city picks and chooses which laws to enforce and on whom.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I currently live in a city much smaller than Detroit. Crime here is a problem though I would never characterize it as out of control. Much to the credit of the police chief, he is honest about crime. He recognizes crime as a serious problem and particularly the way it affects young people in the African-American community.

For a police chief in Detroit to say this would be momentous! If the mayor said this it would send a powerful message.

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Nevertheless, I am deeply disturbed by the fiscal state of the city and especially city hall's continual whitewashing of the crime problem.  I am convinced that crime is the root of Detroit's problems.  White flight, poor schools, urban decay, unemployment - all are symptoms of the pervasive crime problem that has plagued the city for many years.   

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

This is anecdotal, but having lived in the city for almost two years now I have noticed what looks like a significant rise in police activity over the past few months.

While eating at a greektown restaurant a couple months ago, I saw no less than 10 police (on foot, in patrol cars, or in unmarked cars) drive by outside. Since then, I have seen cars stopped on West Grand Boulevard at least three times by police. While out for an Easter vigil service at a church just last weekend I saw police patrolling the area twice in a 20 minute period.

Does this help any? I don't know. From what I have heard/seen 911 response is steady at about 20 minutes. Crime certainly doesn't go away overnight either. But are we making progress? I think so. Time will tell.

-- Ken

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While eating at a greektown restaurant a couple months ago, I saw no less than 10 police (on foot, in patrol cars, or in unmarked cars) drive by outside.  Since then, I have seen cars stopped on West Grand Boulevard at least three times by police.  While out for an Easter vigil service at a church just last weekend I saw police patrolling the area twice in a 20 minute period.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Shouldn't they be patrolling other areas more and saving the city some money?

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