Detroit City Council president: Monday was major screw-up

City Council President Charles Pugh says Monday's canceled emergency meeting was properly noticed

By Rod Meloni - Reporter, CFP ®

DETROIT - Detroit City Council President Charles Pugh was pulling no punches on Tuesday.

He looked back on Monday's botched emergency City Council meeting where he had to order an unruly member of the crowd to be tossed, and Mayor Dave Bing, who called the emergency meeting, never showed.

"That's bullshit. It is!" Pugh said. "This is not hieroglyphics. It's common sense what we need to do. So, to use that argument that, 'they gotta get up to speed ... .' This is not rocket science. It's government."

Pugh is frustrated Bing would tie his having his own separate legal counsel, Miller and Canfield, in place of City Attorney Krystal Crittendon, to whether the city gets to use its own money to stave off insolvency.

However, Pugh openly admitted 24 hours later that the mayor actually did properly hang a notice last Wednesday, even though city offices were closed for the holiday, and that Crittendon's office gave him bogus advice that led the cancellation.

"I think that that was a major screw-up yesterday," Pugh said. "I don't want to point any fingers, but we know who is responsible for making sure that that meeting was properly noticed. And the reality is, you know, I think it was."

Pugh says Monday's disaster brings the city no closer to solving the steady march toward real trouble.

"Even if we had held the meeting, the mayor did not have the five votes and he needs to do the work to get those five votes," Pugh said.

Bing's office said Monday was a great example of why the city's law department is not reliable. He wants his own legal counsel. However, the mayor's office also knows it needs to work this case harder. That's not so easy considering three council members -- Gary Brown, Saunteel Jenkins and Andre Spivey -- were in Boston Tuesday night at a convention and Bing is out of town with sick relatives.

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