DALLAS -- The Michigan cities of Pontiac and Lincoln Park have both improved finances enough to exit state oversight and return to local control, according to the Michigan Department of Treasury.
Michigan Treasurer Nick Khouri announced on Tuesday that the Pontiac and Lincoln Park Receivership Transition Advisory Boards would be dissolved and effective immediately city officials will hold full power over the their internal operations and finances.
“Under the guidance of the Receivership Transition Advisory Boards, both Lincoln Park and Pontiac have made significant progress to right their finances and build solid, fiscal foundations for their communities,” Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder said. “This is a great achievement for the cities.”
The release of Pontiac from its receivership status officially ends more than eight years of state oversight.
The city, which entered state-controlled emergency management since 2009, began transitioning to local control in 2013 when it transferred to state oversight under a consent agreement. Under the consent agreement, day-to-day administrative responsibilities have been managed by state appointed city administrator.
Pontiac slashed its long-term debt from over $45 million to about $8.2 million since 2009, according to the Treasury Department. At the end of fiscal-year 2016, Pontiac ended with a general fund balance of $14 million.
Another factor considered by the treasury was Pontiac’s blight remediation programs. About 677 blighted residential properties have been demolished in Pontiac since 2012, mostly through the use of the federal Community Development Block Grant program.
“Pontiac has seen great economic progress and opportunity since the lost decade,” Khouri said in a press release.
The city of Lincoln Park cut its long term debt from more than $1 million in 2014 when it entered state oversight to $260,707. At the end of fiscal-year 2016, Lincoln Park ended with a general fund balance of $24.4 million.
The city entered state controlled emergency management in February 2014 and began its transition to local control in December 2015.
“Today marks an important achievement for Lincoln Park residents, the city and all who have contributed to moving the city back to a path of fiscal stability,” Khouri said.