... Is anyone else disturbed by the fact that $150 million in funding for Don Barden's casino comes from the two troubled public pension funds of the City of Detroit?
Last week S&P rated Barden's Pittsburgh casino project at B- with a negative outlook -- that's quite bad, and his other Majestic Star operations (in Gary, Indiana; Tunica, Mississippi; and Colorado) were rated a nearly-insolvent CCC+. What on earth are two drastically underfunded pension funds doing investing in a project like that? Isn't it an obvious use of political favors by Barden in his home town of Detroit?
Am I crazy in raising these questions, which have garnered no coverage in the Detroit media from what I've seen, and bare-bones coverage here? Shouldn't someone be investigating and reporting on the deeper stories -- if any -- behind these pension boards' decisions? Did money or favors change hands, and if so, where?
This is not chump change, folks, it is $150 million in savings that are supposed to benefit long-serving city workers in a distressed Rust Belt city. It may not be our own city, but the guy who benefits from it is building a casino in our city with that money. Is there anyone out there with the time and inclination to look into this further?
Monday, April 28, 2008
Slots Parlor: Felix asked a great question in another thread, at the Burgh Report blog
Worthy read, in full. Pointer: http://burghreport.blogspot.com/2008/04/development-la-ravenstahl-means-sweetn.html