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Flint emergency manager, council at odds over filling vacancies

Nov 8, 2014

There’s disagreement over who should be picking replacements for two soon-to-be-vacant Flint City Council seats.

Flint Emergency Manager Darnell Earley holds a news conference to announce his plans for filling city council vacancies and electing charter review commission members
Credit Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

The councilmen are leaving after being elected to other offices.

Flint emergency manager Darnell Earley says he is looking at the options, which may include selecting new council members himself.

“That is an option that will be reviewed in addition to other options that are also available,” says Earley.

Several council members say they would rather the emergency manager let the council decide appointments like it has in the past.   

Like other council members, Eric Mays says he wishes the emergency manager would let council make the appointments like it has in the past.

“I’ll be trying to enter into a dialogue to try and influence him to let it happen that way and not to just do all himself,” says Mays

And it’s not just about how vacancies on the city council are chosen.

On Tuesday, Flint voters said they want a commission to review the city charter. The review commission could completely revamp the 40-year-old charter. 

After the election, Earley announced the public will elect members of the commission in February. He also announced the review commission members will be elected by a citywide vote, not by individual wards.

Flint City Council members worry that may mean that parts of the city might not be represented on the panel that will reimagine city government.