Council does an end-run around city manager

Could it get any messier?

While on the one hand we’re pleased that Hamtramck now has a new police chief on the way, the process in which it happened was messy to say the least.

Before we continue, let us say up front that none of this is meant as criticism of Lt. Max Garbarino, who was appointed to the position last Tuesday. Garbarino still has to sign an employment contract with the city manager, and that contract has to be ultimately approved by the council.

So, it’s not necessarily a done deal yet.

Garbarino’s appointment was the result of some pretty crafty maneuvering by the council’s part – or at least some on the council.

Instead of coming from the city manager, the appointment was made by the council. According to the city charter, the appointment must come from the city manager.

Why did the council take this unusual procedure?

Some on council were frustrated with City Manager Bill Cooper and his refusal to bring forth the second in line for the job. The council previously rejected Cooper’s first choice for the job.

Cooper defused the situation, somewhat, by saying he would not “fight” the council’s decision.

We wish Garbarino good luck in his new job, if in fact the deal still goes through. We just wish this process had followed the course outlined by the charter.

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