The state announced Thursday it had released Wayne County from its consent agreement after it had met conditions that eliminate its deficit.
The state and county reached a consent agreement back in August 2015 after Wayne County Executive Warren Evans called for the state to conduct a financial review. This agreement meant the county would not require an emergency manager to step in, a concern looming up to the agreement. The county has since taken steps to eliminate a $52 million structural deficit and to end an $82 million accumulated deficit.
The county also restructured the health care plans and pensions of retirees and employees to eliminate an $829 million shortfall in unfunded health care obligations. The funding level for its pension system has now increased from 45 percent to 54 percent of required levels. Wayne County also paid the state all outstanding bills it owed to the Department of Health and Human Services related to the child care fund, and will not have to submit a financial plan based on the results indicated in an audited financial statement.
Mr. Evans commented the county still has much to accomplish financially as it still has $636.5 million in unfunded pension liabilities, but the consent agreement allowed the county to accomplish what it needed to fiscally.