OPINION

Letter: Come together to move Detroit forward

After an unprecedented and dramatic election that has stirred deep emotions in us all, it is important to take a step back and address key local results.

The Downtown Detroit Partnership (DDP) was in full support of regional transit, and extends its deepest thanks to the supporters and volunteers who worked tirelessly to show the tremendous benefits voting yes on the RTA millage presented. The millage would have connected communities across Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw, and Wayne counties, increased independence for seniors and people with disabilities, and connected people to jobs and opportunities throughout Southeast Michigan.

Despite the outcome, be assured that this effort has built the foundation for a true regional solution for our community’s mobility needs that will continue to guide us forward in our planning efforts. We’re committed to ensuring our region has the transit infrastructure it deserves and believe that this defeat is simply a roadblock that will be overcome through collaboration and innovative solutions.

On the issue of community benefits agreements (CBAs), we recognize the leadership demonstrated by Mayor Duggan and the Detroit City Council for their efforts to deliver a balanced Community Benefits Ordinance outcome.

The DDP strongly supports the use of CBAs and places a high value on equity and inclusion; however, we do not believe that an ordinance is an appropriate approach for issues that require flexibility.

The passage of Proposal B averts what could have been an outcome with many unintended consequences. While the DDP continues to question an ordinance-based approach when our city leadership has been successfully utilizing CBAs, we now turn our support to Proposal B as it most directly mirrors the strategy the city has pursued in every significant transaction where there has been public support and community impact.

As we move forward, it should be made clear that the failure of the RTA millage and the passage of Proposal B are not reflections of who we are as a community.

Despite this chaotic campaign season, we should all come together with a refocused commitment to move our city forward. We are grateful for the tremendous leadership we have on our board and the relentless passion of our staff, which was evident leading up to the election.

Eric Larson, CEO

Downtown Detroit Partnership