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Bing Talks Of Promise, Challenges For Detroit In State Of City Address

DETROIT (WWJ) - In his 4th State of the City address, Detroit Mayor Dave Bing said Wednesday night that despite the city's money problems, progress is being made.

Before a crowd of several hundred at the Detroit School of Arts Mayor Bing spoke of the need for immediate action to address challenges that the city faces.

Bing says he is asking for the community to help with a new program to be unveiled in the next month called "DETROIT 1."

And Bing believes the program can succeed, with the goal of reducing violent crime by 25 percent.

Mayor Bing's 2013 State of the City Address (PDF)

"Within the next month, Chief Logan will introduce a collaborative crime reduction strategy called, ―Detroit One.‖ Working together with local, state and federal law enforcement, we will focus on identifying and prosecuting gun users . . . dismantling violent gang organizations . . . and engaging the community's support. The goal is to reduce violent gun-related crimes by 25-percent this year."

"Are we concerned about the homicide rate in Detroit? Of course we are," said Bing. "Gun violence here and cities across the nation has reached epidemic levels - we are all fighting for the same battle, trying to reduce crime throughout our city."

Last year -- the city of Detroit recorded just over 400 murders.

Detroit Mayor Dave Bing tried to strike an optimistic tone:

"The picture is not all doom and gloom - everyday there is more hope and possibilities. Like many Detroiters I too am a fighter, we can't and won't give up on our city."

"We are expected to do more with less, I'm sure we all know how difficult and sometimes impossible that can be. We also need to put into perspective the state's role in our city's deficit over the years."

"We were immediately thrown into the enormous task of managing this crisis ... despite the naysayers predictions there have not been any payless paydays, no emergency manager to date, and no declaration of bankruptcy for the city of Detroit."

Detroit's budget deficit is at $327 million and Bing says a cash flow issue "threatens the present and future" of the city. He points to cutting spending by $300 million, slicing about 3,700 jobs of the city's payrolls as moving in the right direction.

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