Orr, Duggan decide Mayor-Elect's role in Detroit

Agreement allows Mayor-Elect day-to-day management of city operations

DETROIT – Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr and Mayor-Elect Mike Duggan have reached an agreement on how the city will be managed through its financial emergency, establishing clear guidelines giving the mayor responsibility for the city's day-to-day operations, providing for greater collaboration and shared responsibility between the two offices, and upholding Public Act 436, which grants specific powers and final decision-making authority to the emergency manager.

FLASHPOINT: Devin talks with Detroit EM Kevyn Orr

Under the agreement, the emergency manager maintains management and responsibility for all of the city's finance operations with financial matters relating to day-to-day function of government reporting to the mayor.

The blight initiative will report to the Mayor, but matters affecting the City's proposed Plan of Adjustment or compliance with commitments made to the Federal government will report to the Emergency Manager. The mayor will appoint all non-civil service positions within the Executive Branch of City government, subject to approval by the Emergency Manager.

Read: Detroit EM, mayor-elect announce new finance chief

"There is one goal in Detroit and that is to create a strong, vibrant and solvent city and this agreement will help us achieve that," Emergency Manager Orr said. "Mayor-Elect Duggan and I have come up with a way to manage day-to-day operations and the financial restructuring in a collaborative fashion that puts the best interests of all of its 700,000 residents first. I thank the Mayor-Elect for his ideas and hard work that went into this agreement and I look forward to working with him on a daily basis to help restore this great city."

Read: Trial over $350M deal for Detroit begins

Mayor-Elect Duggan added: "The people of Detroit elected me to change the quality of life in their city. This agreement will allow the team I am assembling to impact city services that touch our residents every day. I look forward to making a significant impact in the areas of blight, public lighting and the fire department in 2014."

The agreement represents more than six weeks of discussion between the Emergency Manager, the Mayor-Elect and their staff as they looked for a way to manage City operations and its historic restructuring simultaneously. Rather than a specific delineation of authority, the agreement focuses on seven guiding principles that outline the division of responsibilities for the two offices:

  • Emergency Manager maintains oversight of the Detroit Police Department pursuant to EM Order No. 11; the Mayor will consult with respect to public safety strategy and progress;
  • Except as otherwise noted, the Mayor administers and is responsible for the day-to-day operation of City government in close collaboration with the Emergency Manager
  • Emergency Manager is responsible for overall City financial functions; Mayor administers financial functions necessary for day-to-day operations of the City
  • Emergency Manager oversees a new centralized Federal grant management program; Mayor collaborates with Emergency Manager on grant strategies and utilization
  • Emergency Manager continues restructuring effort; Mayor can propose alternatives that meet or exceed stated restructuring objectives
  • Mayor makes no decisions that are inconsistent with or jeopardize the City's Plan of Adjustment, Chapter 9 case or financial restructuring
  • Emergency Manager maintains all rights and authority granted under Public Act 436 of 2012