Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan is under federal investigation by the U.S. Treasury Department, and reports say investigators have been on the ground in Michigan. Whether they are close to or preparing for charges is unknown at this time…
The controversy surrounds-among other things- a shady increase in the cost to remove blighted homes, and allegations of bid rigging contracts in favor of donors to Duggan.
According to Reuters:
“A year after the city exited the biggest-ever U.S. municipal bankruptcy, a plan to demolish half of its nearly 80,000 blighted or deteriorating structures — nearly one in three city buildings — is showing some signs of success.
But the federally backed program has been tainted by allegations that Mayor Mike Duggan favored demolition contractors who donated to his campaign and by a steep rise in costs.
Federal and city probes into the allegations are underway. Duggan, whose program has razed more than 7,000 homes in two years, denies any wrongdoing.
The special inspector general for the U.S. Treasury Department’s Troubled Asset Relief Program — from which Detroit gets its federal blight-relief dollars — is investigating the city’s demolition program.
Agents visited the Michigan State Housing Development Authority, a state agency that is a pass-through for the federal funds, on Nov. 17 to discuss the matter, a spokeswoman for the state agency confirmed on Monday.”
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