Belle Isle lease proposal not likely to be reconsidered anytime soon

DETROIT (WXYZ) - "If we're going to charge to get on Belle Isle, I think we should do it ourselves," said Detroit City Council President Charles Pugh a day after council decided to delay a vote on the controversial proposal that would have allowed the state to lease and maintain the island, while charging an annual fee.

Council's decision to delay the vote, sparked Governor Rick Snyder to take the proposal off the table.

On Wednesday, Gov. Snyder said he might consider the lease proposal again, but only after this coming summer.

Pugh is hoping they might still be able to work out some sort of agreement with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources that will be agreeable to both sides.

"I think it's the best deal we could have gotten," said Councilman James Tate who worked with state officials to develop the lease proposal. Tate added that neither side got exactly what they wanted.

We're told the city could have saved about $6 million a year if the state was allowed to operate Belle Isle.

Tate cited that savings for the cash-strapped city and Belle Isle's 22 Detroit Police officers that could be reassigned to patrol the neighborhoods as some of the reasons to support the measure.

Tate highlighted his priorities of public safety and providing services to residents.

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