August 11, 2014 at 3:18 pm

Financial emergency cited in Benton Harbor schools

Benton Harbor — Gov. Rick Snyder has determined there’s a financial emergency in the Benton Harbor Area Schools.

The state Treasury Department says Snyder agreed Monday with the conclusions of a financial review team.

The review team says the Berrien County district in western Michigan had a $15.5 million deficit June 30, 2013. Enrollment has fallen 43 percent to 2,680 in the past decade.

The district has seven days to request a hearing. The appointment of an emergency manager is one of several options if the state confirms a financial emergency.

The city of Benton Harbor had an emergency manager for four years until last spring.

State-appointed managers have been sent to other distressed Michigan cities and schools. They include Detroit, where officials plan to exit federal bankruptcy proceedings this year.