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Case Study: How the City of Detroit Bounced Back with Euna Grants

Client name: City of Detroit

Reduced audit findings: 88%
Awarded grants and donations: $202 million+

About the City of Detroit: A Story of Resilience

At over 600,000 residents, the City of Detroit is not only the largest city in Michigan—it’s one of the most resilient places in America. With passionate community leaders and a strong sense of civic pride, they’ve spent decades overcoming a seemingly endless number of obstacles. Whether its problems were economic or infrastructural, Detroit has not only soldiered on but experienced a revitalization in recent years that’s truly inspiring.

Challenge: Guiding the Motor City Through Economic Downturn

While years of plant closures had already decimated their once-robust automotive industry and left many unemployed, the city was particularly impacted by the 2008 recession, leaving many living below the poverty line. While struggling to recover from bankruptcy, municipal leaders were determined to find a way to restore financial stability to the place they love.

In addition to economic restoration, the larger aim was to drive Detroit forward and create a prosperous, self-sustaining community that would carry the city into tomorrow. To meet these goals, city leaders needed to increase their grant funding to “pilot and innovate and enhance”, according to Katerli Bounds, Detroit’s former Deputy Chief Financial Officer.

Bounds got to work immediately, soliciting a competitive bid under emergency management conditions to procure a web-based grants management solution. Her requirements? An intuitive user interface, baked-in compliance, expedited implementation, and easy integration with Detroit’s existing financial management system. When she discovered Euna Grants, powered by eCivis, it checked all the boxes.

Solution: A Driving Force Behind Grants Management

By providing a centralized user-friendly system for grants management, Euna Grants helped Detroit’s leaders keep track of funding while easily integrating with existing financial tools, making it a valuable asset to the city.

Eliminating the use of tedious and manual processes, Bounds and her team were also able to automate their funding processes and make their accounting practices more compliant. Euna Grants also improved Detroit’s communication and transparency when dealing with key stakeholders, allowing the city to save documentation electronically for smoother and more efficient audit preparation.

Results: Compliance, Surpluses, and Increased Grant Funding

After implementing Euna Grants, Detroit reduced audit findings by 88%, achieved three consecutive years of a balanced budget and operating surpluses, and was awarded over $202 million in grants and donations.

“In the years since the rebound, Detroit’s communities have surged, with a thriving downtown business district and reinvestment in historic neighborhoods. Grants played a major role.”

— Katerli Bounds, Former Deputy Chief Financial Officer, City of Detroit

Though economic uncertainty continues to pose challenges for communities, new technological innovations make it easier than ever for city governments to get the help they need. With the increased level of federal opportunities available today, Detroit’s tale of recovery and unprecedented funding is an example of what can be accomplished with a digital grants management solution like Euna Grants.