Judge makes ruling in Taylor grant money fight

Judge says City Council can force mayor to accept grant to use for firefighter positions

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TAYLOR, Mich. - A judge has ruled in favor of the Taylor City Council's request to accept an $8 million federal grant, even though the mayor has been vehemently against it.

The council and Mayor Jeffrey Lamarand have been at odds over the grant because Lamarand says taking the money only means delaying laying off 32 firefighters and isn't the answer to budget issues.

The council argued the mayor needed to accept the grant to solve the immediate safety issue and keep the firefighters on board.

On Friday, Wayne County Circuit Court Judge Edward Prentis said Lamarand must listen to council.

"I am deeply disappointed to hear the outcome of the courts decision. The decision of this court should not be seen as a loss for me, but rather a loss for the residents and taxpayers of Taylor. As I have publicly stated before, we continue to suffer for the decisions and actions being taken by this City Council who seek political gain rather than what is in the best financial interest of the city," Lamarand said in a statement.

Lamarand said he will be appealing.

"In my service the residents, I cannot allow the Office of the Mayor to be bullied by five  members of the City Council with threats of law suits into recklessly accepting any grant which places the city at great financial risk," he said. "Nothing frustrates me more than having to wastefully spend tax dollars on reacting to situations that have been created by this council. It is deplorable to say the least."

Local 4's Rod Meloni report on the situation from June: Do you take the federal dollars?

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