The receivership was successful in eliminating Ecorse's accumulated deficits and fiscal distress in December 1986. The Receiver reduced excess staff, eliminated discretionary unfunded operations, restructured operations, and revised contracts to inhibit the Mayor, Council, elected officials, unions and Ecorse management from digressing back to the same problems experienced at the inception of the receivership.
Union agreements were revised which lowered the costs of providing services. Patronage and other employee positions were eliminated. Services were privatized to the extent possible. Service alternatives were explored whereever possible, such as contracting services from other governmental units and annexation. Finally, when all other alternatives were exhausted in reducing costs to the bare minimum, a specific judgment levy for pension contributions to the underfunded Police and Fire Pension Plan (Pension Plan) was raised by the Court. Before this permanent tax went into effect, however, the Pension Plan was closed to new hires and many of the active employees were transferred to the State-administered Michigan Municipal Employees Retirement System.
Other municipalities can benefit from the efforts discussed in this Report. Many of the issues addressed by the Receiver may require other municipal officials and management to take tough stands on often politically sensitive issues. These municipal officials and management need the "political will" to resist the various parties who would prevent change. Unfortunately, too few elected officials have this political will.