White House to Extend Detroit a Helping Hand

The city will receive $300 million in public and private funds.

Posted: 09/27/2013 10:48 AM EDT

Top Obama administration officials are heading to Detroit today to discuss a $300 million aid package to help the bankrupt city rebuild. The funds will be used to help redevelop blighted neighborhoods, hire firefighters and purchase firefighting equipment and improve the bankrupt city's public transportation system, reports the Detroit Free Press.

"We’ve found significant resources that we believe can be unlocked and expedited and leveraged to have significant impact on the economy of Detroit,” said Gene Sperling, who heads the White House National Economic Council.

The federal government wants everyone to know that the grants should not be confused with a bailout for the city, which is $18 billion in debt.

"There is not going to be a bailout," Democratic U.S. Sen. Carl Levin told the Associated Press on Wednesday. "We have enough problems with the federal deficit. We need to be creative and look at existing programs. There are still some funds there."

In addition to state and federal resources, some of the funding is coming from charitable groups like the Ford Foundation, Kresge Foundation and Knight Foundation and will be used to boost entrepreneurship and job creation.

The meeting will include Attorney General Eric Holder, HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan and Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder, Detroit Mayor Dave Bing and emergency manager Kevyn Orr.

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(Photo: AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

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