Poverty Exists In Oakland County, But Its Extent Is Debated.

May 20, 2014

By Pat Batcheller

"(They) keep using numbers for their own benefit, I mean we always see that, but this gets a little bit over the top, I think."

Kurt Metzger, Director Emeritus of Data Driven Detroit and Mayor of Pleasant Ridge.

There's not much debate that poverty has grown in Oakland County since the Great Recession. But there is a heated debate over how much it has grown. Recently, Lighthouse of Oakland County issued a report saying poverty in the county had risen by 77 percent between 2005 and 2012. County officials blasted the report, saying Lighthouse exaggerated the numbers to solicit donations. The group denied that and accused county leaders of ignoring the problem. Kurt Metzger, founder of Data Driven Detroit, reviewed both claims and tells WDET's Pat Batcheller that both sides are right--and wrong. Click on the audio link above to hear the conversation.

Read the Lighthouse report here.

Oakland County's response can be read here.