Electric Company Repossesses Michigan City's Street Lights

If you can’t pay your utility bill, chances are the power company will just turn off your electricity until you can. But when it came time for the city of Highland Park, MI, to settle its $4 million debt to DTE Energy, the repo man came calling.

According to CBS Detroit, DTE Energy has removed the light bulbs in 1,400 street lights as part of its attempt to recoup some of those owed millions.

But they haven’t left the city completely in the dark. The street lights that remain on have been fitted with higher efficiency lights that will cost the city less.

“At the direction of the city we have removed most of those street lights and before we did we had put in replacement lights, about 200 new lights, primarily at street corners and intersections,” a rep for DTE tells CBS.

But residents complain about the lack of light and related safety concerns.

“There’s no lights,” says one local citizen, adding that kids on the way to school, “just have to take a chance on walking down the street … so they can get on the bus or walk to school.”

The mayor of Highland Park says crime has not gone up since the lights were taken away.

DTE Repossesses Highland Park’s Street Lights [CBSlocal.com]