REPLAY: Dearborn State of the City

Check out our chat from Mayor Jack O'Reilly's State of the City, held Monday night at Dearborn City Hall.

Dearborn Mayor Jack O'Reilly held his State of the City address Monday night in the City Council chambers.

In his speech, O'Reilly addressed both the issues facing Dearborn, as well as upcoming developments and successes–and new ways for residents to measure city progress.

O'Reilly unveiled the city's Performance Dashboard, which he explained is "a meaningful tool to measure our efforts and assess how we are doing as an organization.

"Essentially, it's our report card."

O'Reilly focused heavily on the city government's transparency on issues, as well as their commitment to giving residents results for their tax dollars.

"We cannot worry first about satisfying this group vs. that group," he said. "We worry first about our whole community. We pursue what's best for the future of our city because we know that's what is best for all of us in the long run."

Check out the replay from our live chat for more details from the speech, or watch it on CDTV or the City of Dearborn's website.

CDTV's schedule for airing the State of City, beginning March 7, is as follows:
•    Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays :  7 a.m., 11 a.m., 3 p.m., 7 p.m. and 11 p.m.
•    Tuesdays and Thursdays: 8 a.m., noon and 4 p.m.
•    Saturdays: 9 a.m., 5 p.m. and 9 p.m.
•    Sundays: 9 a.m., 1 p.m. and 5 p.m.

Frank Lee March 06, 2012 at 03:10 AM
This man is a pathetic blowhard and an incompetent Buffon who could never earn an income in the private sector but somehow manages to fleece the taxpayers to pay him more money every year. This man is a disgrace and is an empty suit.
Ben Bachrach March 06, 2012 at 01:24 PM
Does it take one to know one?
Carla O'Neill March 06, 2012 at 04:38 PM
Prior to the collapse of major private sector manufacturers in the once lucrative U.S. automotive industry, company leaders, desperate to stop the slide of sales and profits hired overpriced consulting firms with trendy cutesy names to try to quantify their problems and solutions. Their approach never worked but sure did line the pockets of those who sold the manufacturers a bill of goods.
Rita Dennaoui March 06, 2012 at 06:07 PM
This morning on Chanel 7, it was reported that Dearborn is now attracting more educated people. So, I thought to myself, which part of Dearborn EAST, South or West. I know I am one of thoes educated people in the EAST end, w/ a master degree, no one else on my block. Secondly, why are we having so many beak-ins. All I know my tax dollar is not providing me with the service I deserve. Yes, this city is pathetic. 20 years of paying taxes, I have never Dearborn in the shape it is in today. Thanks
Rita Dennaoui March 06, 2012 at 06:09 PM
Frank, I am so on board with you .
Dearborn Taxpayer March 06, 2012 at 11:17 PM
Where are the pictures of our city administrators, mayor, school board members and administrators shaking hands with and some even hugging Bob Ficano last night? What a slap at Dearborn and Wayne County taxpayers! One question, how does the Mayor plan to finance and ultimately pay for the proposed convention center that he wants to build near the Hyatt? No mention of that in his speech.
Bob March 07, 2012 at 03:48 AM
"Dearborn Homecoming will not need tax dollar support going forward, mayor says." Where is that report on the 2011 Homecoming costs the City promised last year? It's now been over seven months and we still haven't seen this report? I think the Mayor needs to produce the supporting documents to that claim. Did they take into account all the employee regular time AND overtime that goes into Homecoming?
Bob March 07, 2012 at 03:59 AM
"He (the Mayor) is discussing a new program called the "Performance Dashboard," which publicly measures progress toward achieving city goals." Why doesn't this Performance Dashboard contain the numbers for 2011? Seems a bit out of date.
Bob March 07, 2012 at 04:25 AM
"Where do you think the city should look to cut costs?" How about stopping all of the studies the City has done by outside companies for various things. For example, $38,240 for a Camp Dearborn Feasibility Study. Isn't that why the Mayor appoints the Department Heads - for their expertise in their chosen area? Shouldn't they be the ones coming up with and researching new ides or ways for the City to cut costs and raise revenue? Take the Camp Dearborn study. Why not have an online questionnaire asking residents and those who actually use Camp Dearborn what they think would make Camp Dearborn more popular and increase usage. With all of the technology/social media/apps available, there are a lot of ways to utilize grassroot marketing techniques and social media to increase business and get valuable feedback from your target audience without just paying some other company to do the work for you. You would think those who work for the City in upper management would be the ones who best know the City and the first ones to come up with new ideas and tactics that would improve the City. They should also be the ones to determine new and better ways to interact with the community to gage their needs and wants. If they can't do this, what are we paying them for? The goal of any organization is to improve on the current situation and strive for more for the good of their customers, in this case, the residents. Is Dearborn's current administration really doing this?
Lee Jacobsen March 07, 2012 at 06:24 AM
Bob, the city probably needs a study to see if the budget for snowplowing needs an increase after all the snow this year. What, no snow? Gosh! I wonder what all that extra money , generated from no plowing, will be used for now? Spent on more studies??
marooned in Dbn March 07, 2012 at 01:03 PM
Bob, I believe that your suggestion about asking the Dbn public, thru a direct questionnaire, about how certain things should be run is an excellent idea. Who should know best than the very ppl who pay for these things via property taxes. All such matters should NOT be put to so-called "dept heads", or feasibility study outfits. Mail a questionnair to all heads of HOUSEHOLDS, who own PROPERTY in the City of Dbn instead. Those are the entities who have "skin in the game", as O'Bama, our President, has said many times. The reason this will NOT happen is a lack of trust in the ability of regular ppl to make proper decisions/judgements, and the entrenchment of special intrests, via "credentials", of whatever kind....( to be continued later)
marooned in Dbn March 07, 2012 at 01:07 PM
Lee, probably spent on "studies" about that new convention center, mentioned by somebody above. Lets see... a new city hall, a new school administration building, and now a convention center. Looks like another "vote" for a massive tax increase is in our future.
Bob March 08, 2012 at 12:56 AM
"O'Reilly focused heavily on the city government's transparency on issues, as well as their commitment to giving residents results for their tax dollars." If this were really true, that O'Reilly is committed to giving residents results for their tax dollars, then he would do something about the Loose Leaf Pick-up Program, like ELIMINATE it! $629,958.13 is too much to spend on a inefficient, poorly executed, unmonitored program that has become more of a detriment to the City than a benefit. I'm not sure how much the cost would be for Republic to pick up bagged leaves at the curb, but even if it's $200,000, that would still be a savings of almost $430,000 and I have a feeling, the quote from Republic would be less than $200,000. That money could be better spent saving the pools/libraries and eliminating the loose leaf pick-up would make the streets of Dearborn look a lot better and be a lot safer without all those leaves all over the streets for months on end.
Lee Jacobsen March 08, 2012 at 06:18 AM
Let's apply the almost certain surplus created by not having the expense of plowing and salting the streets of Dearborn this winter due to mild weather to the budget of loose leaf removal later in the fall. Compared to snow removal, leaves are cheap. To be specific, rock salt, $384,810, overtime, $150,000, major st. 153,550, local st. 912,644, snow total budget prox $1,601,000. Loose leaf removal : $165,550. Again, with a mild winter, that leaves at least 1.45 million surplus, even after removing leaves for 2012. What to do with that 1.45 million? source, page 31, city budget here. http://www.cityofdearborn.org/images/stories/PDF/Government/Departments/Finance/budget2011/BudgetHearing/Line_Item_Budget_Exp_-_Public_Hearing_6-3-11.pdfli Alas, if leaves just are not in the budget this year, some ideas.... Aternatively, since the city has the equipment already, the neighborhoods can contract directly with the city for loose leaf removal and cut out the middlemen. Otherwise, a lot of folk will rent their own end loaders and do leaf removal their way, which may clog up the streets somewhat. The alternative is to bag the leaves, but what if you can't do the bagging, for whatever reason? Some places will have a hundred bags of leaves or more. Of course, there is an easy and inexpensive solution to surplus leaves. Their is no restriction on having 'compost' piles of leaves, so simply designate a place in the yard, and make a pile of leaves, the leaf 'circle of life'.
Bob March 08, 2012 at 01:20 PM
Lee, I understand what you are saying about the cost of snow removal, but where are you getting the $165,550 for loose leaf removal? The latest totals I found are from the 2/27/12 City Council Meeting where they approved an additional $230,000 where they went over budget for a total of $629,958.13 for loose leaf removal for 2011. As far as residents bagging their own leaves, this used to be the policy in Dearborn and I have family in other cities that have to bag their own leaves and as you said they have a LOT of bags, but that's just the rules they have to follow living in the city they live in. At least the streets in their city are kept clean, unlike Dearborn.
Rita Dennaoui March 08, 2012 at 06:38 PM
Bob, I live next door to people who do not rake their leaves. My home has no trees, and all the leaves blow onto my property. When you complain the city says we have no ordiance enforced for these types of issues. Therefore, in plain English, I think the city is afraid to enforce such laws, fearing discrimination and nit picking. The world has changed. We the people in the City of Dearborn are afraid to speak up, because of retailiation. It happened to me and I came home to a broken windown and vandalized jeep. It is so sad to have to read about the city that my parents came to live in since 1950.
Lee Jacobsen March 15, 2012 at 06:34 AM
Bob, The issue is keeping the streets clean and safe. That includes leaves. With 1.6 million saved in snow removal, that leaves leaves in the green for funding & still one million remaining. The 165,000 is for disposal, with another $400,000 for the labor to remove the leaves from the streets by the city workers. This fee could be halved by private contractors. Details are here: http://www.pressandguide.com/articles/2011/05/25/news/doc4dd6a29ea288f245436065.txt?viewmode=default As far as what policies used to be, that is like saying we used to use the post office to mail our bills, but most folk are using modern technology, ie the internet to do that now. We have technology to remove massive amounts of leaves, let's use it. If the city can't afford it, then the residents can wait until all the leaves fall off the trees, into the streets, and then either bag them, shred them, or compost them. Code says we can't burn them. Large paper bags are not cheap, at least $2 each, so the math is not that hard to figure out. Shredders are available, and noisy, but neighbors can chip in and share. If the small bits 'happen' to get washed into the street drains...oh well, we have a fancy storm system to sort it out....... If you have lots of trees, then leaf removal is an issue. If you don't, then you need to plant some trees!
edward binkley March 21, 2013 at 07:26 PM
Bob sorry but most of the Mayor's ideas come from other people, he has taken and used 3 of my ideas in his speeches 1 was the parking meters,but he said he was going to wait for a lawsuit appeal to come in and i said just remove them. the 1st part of the speech were my words from her the patch so vote for me and I promise I will show you the books and the numbers actually for my pay all I want is 31,100.00 and the other 100,000.00 I will put back into the city's budget where it belongs
edward binkley March 21, 2013 at 07:28 PM
Lee then you tell the city you have a cut you grass ordinance and garbage can ordinance and why can't I smoke in my backyard ordinance if I live behind oakwood hospital but nothing for leaves go back to the drawing board on the ordinances.
edward binkley March 21, 2013 at 07:29 PM
Im terribly sorry I meant Rita


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