Is Hamtramck ready to retake local control?
That’s a question many will be asking as the last few weeks go by before Emergency Manager Cathy Square leaves.
A city manager is expected to be hired before her departure, which will leave little time for the city council to get acclimated to its new role. It’s unfortunate that a city manager couldn’t have been brought in weeks ago, but the search for one was partially hindered by Hamtramck’s reputation of being unstable.
We are confident, however, that we will have a competent city manager who will be able to work with the council.
Without a doubt there is much at stake in regaining limited local control. The city can’t afford to find itself in another financial bind. The state has now twice appointed an emergency manager to take over control when finances hit rock bottom.
We can’t help but think that if it were to happen again, the third time will result in something worse than another manager.
The city’s finances are pretty much set for the next two years, but city officials will have their hands full in drawing up financial plans for the years ahead. One of the biggest obstacles to haunt the city will be funding its pension system.
As for the legacy of Emergency Manager Square, it’s likely that folks will be assessing her job performance for months to come. She can accurately say that she left Hamtramck in a better place it was when she arrived.
As always, it’s up to our local officials to see her work wasn’t done in vain. During this Thanksgiving week, we should all reflect on Hamtramck’s future, and, of course, be thankful for our current stability.
We don’t know what you think, but we are optimistic about Hamtramck.