Education Achievement Authority owes Detroit Public Schools millions for rent and services

Posted at 6:55 PM, Aug 08, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-08 18:55:11-04

It is a story you will see only on 7 Action News. We have obtained emails that show the school district created by Governor Rick Snyder, the Education Achievement Authority, may owe Detroit Public Schools more than $14 million.

Emails say as DPS went broke, the EAA didn’t pay for rent and services provided. DPS Transition Manager Former Judge Steven Rhodes wants to know when the money is going to be paid back.

“It shows the malfeasance of the state’s operation of the EAA,” said LaMar Lemmons.

"The Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD) is currently negotiating payment for the current services that it provides to the Education Achievement Authority of Michigan (EAA). These include tech support, telephone and security services for the 2016-2017 school year,” said a statement released by Chrystal Wilson, Detroit Public Schools Community District Interim Executive Director of Communications. "DPSCD aspires to provide excellence in education for its students. It is on a path to achieve that goal.  EAA’s payment of the millions of dollars that it owes will further help achieve that goal."

7 Action News also reached out to the EAA for comment.

"We continue working with DPS leadership under the direction of the Department of Treasury and the Governor’s office in regards to payment on previous lease agreements,” said EAA Chancellor Veronica Conforme. "We have partnered on a payment plan for the Information Technology and Detroit Public Schools Police Department services that the EAA receives. Payments are already underway and will be paid in full. The EAA and DPSCD share the same goal of providing a high quality education to all of our students.” 

LaMar Lemmons says he wants to know why it took so long for payment to be addressed. He said the millions were needed as buildings fell apart and kids sat in classrooms without teachers.