The question is what exactly do the lawmakers, and for that matter the local press, not get. Detroit is in a fight for its future viability. Based on the fiscal year 2015 budget Detroit's future will include a decade or more of austerity budgets and if its lucky will stabilize at an impoverished level.During the early stages of the EM rein many people estimated the value of the art to be between $10-$15 billion. Granted there is some question whether the city has the right to liquidate it and use it to reinvigorate the city. Before the $15 billion is given to the DIA for less than $1-billion the citizens have a right to know whether the Grand Bargain is a Grand Scam. My guess is many of Michigan's citizens who are pushing for the Grand Bargain are also large contributors to the political office holders of the state.
It is concerning that an estimate of value of all the art at the DIA is only now being undertaken. Simultaneously lawyers for the city should be reviewing documents to be assured the city has the right to depose of the art and use the funds to build a brighter future for the city and its residents.
The artwork did not prevent the city from falling into the abyss and it will not help it recover. Recovery is dependent on the building and attraction of a working/middle class. This will only happen with the city creating safe, blight free neighborhoods with good housing and a good school system. This will take time and money. The money is at the DIA. The working/middle class of Detroit will not happen without good schools.
Per a White Paper issued by Detroit's law firm, Jones Day, the city could have been selling art to improve neighborhoods and schools while it was under bankruptcy protection and Judge Rhodes could not have prevented it from doing so. This should have been done.
I am opposed to giving anymore funds to the creditors including the pensioners. Investing in neighborhoods and schools gives hope to the city's future, paying creditors more money does not. Yes I know I am asking a lot from the pensioners but I hope they understand it is for the sake of their ancestors that I do this.