Mayor Jim Fouts, audiotapes dominate another Warren City Council meeting

Fouts accused in connection with insulting audiotapes

WARREN, Mich. – Warren Mayor Jim Fouts and the audiotapes that allegedly reveal Fouts insulting people with special needs, women and blacks dominated the public comments section of another Warren City Council meeting.

"I believe it's time for Mayor Fouts to retire," a woman said.

For a few months, Fouts has dodged questions after the audio recordings were released.

"From the halls of Congress to the hall of City Hall, the mayor has been rebuked and he has not even offered a simple apology to those offended," a resident said.

While some people want Fouts to resign, his supporters were also mixed into the crowd.

"I've known Fouts for 40 years," one resident said. "I don't believe he said those things on the tape."

"I ask that the city of Warren does not entertain this situation anymore, because I believe there's a lot of mess going on with these politicians," a man said.

But the "mess" isn't going away. Fouts is also fighting a legal battle in a state investigation into improper mailing for a campaign fundraiser. The City Council decided it won't pay for legal matters after having previously agreed to do so.

"That was just a mistake," Councilman Ronald Papandrea said. "We corrected the mistake. It passed last time. The city's not at risk on that issue. If you're not at risk, we don't need a lawyer."

Some council members ask the question: If the city doesn't pay, will the public know everything the investigation uncovers?

"Now it's not subject to FIOA (the Freedom of Information Act), and it's another way of keeping the residents from knowing what's going on," at-large Councilman Scott Stevens said.