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Lansing, state to invest $200K to help city’s financial health team

David Hollister, Mark Bashore, Eric Scorsone photo
Scott Pohl
Lansing Financial Health Team members David Hollister (L) and Eric Scorsone (R) with host Mark Bashore

In his annual State of the City report, Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero said the city is financially strong. But that’s in the short term. Officials say in the coming year, Lansing must gain control of its $600-million in unfunded retiree health care and pension debt. Wel talk with two members of the Lansing Financial Health Team.

The Lansing Financial Health Team has been poring over the city’s ledgers for more than two years.  Recently, it announced that Lansing has the highest unfunded liability of any Michigan city -- or county.  The city of Lansing owes its retired work force more than $400-million in health care costs, and some $200-million in pension obligations.

Just days before he issued his annual State of the City report, Mayor Virg Bernero told WKAR that Lansing is in good fiscal shape in the short term, but that it can’t afford to ignore the debt into the future.

Current State talks with two members of the Lansing Financial Health Team. Dr. Eric Scorsone directs the MSU Extension Center for Local Government Finance and Policy, and David Hollister is the former mayor of the city of Lansing.

Kevin Lavery is a general assignment reporter and occasional local host for Morning Edition and All Things considered.
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