Tuesday, February 8, 2011
Detroit was once the envy of the country, the creators of the auto age and builders of Motor City. After the fall of the US auto industry, Detroit became the poster child for the recession as the city faced challenges of severe unemployment, rising crime and foreclosures.
But, this Sunday one commercial may have finally shown a spotlight on a city which has seen more than its fair share of hardships. Chrysler’s Super Bowl ad instantly lit a fire under the city’s deem reputation. The ad highlighted local talent and embraced the city’s controversial cover boy, Eminem.
Embracing and building on the momentum of local pride portrayed on a national level through this Chrysler commercial, Mayor Dave Bing announced Monday he will begin luring 200 police officers back to the city by offering them renovated homes for as little as $1,000.
According to the Detroit Free Press, “53% of the city's 2,845 officers live outside Detroit. The exodus began in 1999 when the state revoked mandatory residency for Detroit's municipal employees, allowing police to live where they wished.” By providing the city’s most critical workers, like police officers and fire fighters, the chance to purchase a home closer to where they work Bing’s hope is to reduce crime and help solve the city’s hemorrhaging tax base.
"We hope this serves as a call to action for other corporations, organizations and individuals to live where they work," Bing said. "Detroiters want to live in safe, clean neighborhoods. They deserve nothing less."
The city plans to pay for this incentive using $30 million of its $41 million from the Neighborhood Stabilization Fund. The remaining $11 million is being used to help lower-income residents buy houses.