Retirees react to Governor Rick Snyder's proposal

DETROIT (WXYZ) - Wednesday's bankruptcy proceedings-- in addition to Governor Snyder's proposal-- are sending waves across Detroit's retirees.

Those retirees will tell you they understand bankruptcy takes a long process, but they'll also say it will never be as long as the commitment these retirees put into the city.

"I dreamed about when I retired, I could sit down and have a decent life." said Donald Smith as he held a photo of himself.

Like the photo in his hand, the colors of Smith's dream continue to fade. After 29 years working for the city, the Detroit retiree says medications are a huge part of his expenses. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes held off on a decision Wednesday to block proposed health care cuts to retirees. Those cuts are slated for March 1.

"Half the time I'm going to figure out whether I'm going to eat or not," said Smith, "So when you're talking about March 1 when they go and change that, it's going to get worse for me."

Smith thinks Governor Snyder's proposal to use state funds to protect Detroit pensions and the DIA is all smoke and mirrors.

"Because the people are trying to save the art museum and wanting to give us a little bit, now he's trying to go and justify himself?" said Smith, "This is a ploy to move into an election. It does not seem genuine."

Critics of Smith's reaction may find him ungrateful. But in the sunset of his life, the 69-year-old says his greatest critic may be himself. When asked what the younger version of himself would say to him now, Smith said, "He'd call me a fool."

"He would call me a fool because all the promises that were given to this man have been lies."

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