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Jan 20

Elevator! Elevator! We Got The Shaft

Comments (0) 12:00 AM posted by admin |

Maybe there’s something to the theory that if you shine the spotlight on someone or something you can effect change.

It was reported at Tuesday’s Ypsilanti City Council meeting that the $336,500 in MEDC grant money that was moved from the Water Street Project would be replaced by forgiving $50K worth of loans. It turns out the City Manager had a decimal in the wrong place. This memo should help set part of the record straight.

Mayor and Council Members:

During Tuesday’s council meeting I was unable to provide you with a detailed explanation of what the city received in exchange for transferring the $336,000 to the RAC elevator project. My November 29, 2005 CIL reported that “Ms. Gibb and her staff were able to extend the schedule of repayment of the CDBG loan for the Water Street project from 2010 to 2015. Staff was also successful in increasing the forgivable portion of the loan by $500,000 to a total of $1,250,000. If all conditions are met, this would result in a loan obligation of $1,500,000, while the City received over $3 million in support of the project.” I hope this helps clarify the transaction.


Edward B. Koryzno Jr.
City Manager
City of Ypsilanti
1 S. Huron Street
Ypsilanti, MI 48197
(734) 483-1810
(734) 483-7260

Fair enough, but the key words are “If all conditions are met.”

The forgivability of these loans is dependent on matching funds from the City and / or a developer. If the City can’t come up with the proper match, we could end up owing the State as much as $750K MORE than is being reported.

If you recall, I posted a City memo about the “financial viability” of the Water Street Project. This information was later published by civic leader Bob Doyle in a nine-page letter to City Council. A project that was already being considered not financially viable to developers has just had $336,500 stripped away from it. Admittedly I am not a developer, but I would think removing those funds for elevators would make the project even less appealing to developers.

Of course I could be wrong. I’m not a member of City Council. I just pretend to be one.  

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