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Detroit police chief will stay another 2 years

Sean Davis
Flickr http://tinyurl.com/ndp3cbj

Detroit's police chief will keep his job for at least another two years.

James Craig was hired by Kevyn Orr, the state-appointed emergency manager who took the city through bankruptcy.

Mayor Mike Duggan says it turned out to be a good choice, and he wants Craig to stick around.

"We had a 5-minute contract negotiation,” Duggan said. “Easiest one of my life."

In an unorthodox move, Craig's contract will renew automatically every year unless Craig or the mayor give 12-months’ written notice. Duggan says he wants to avoid the kind of churn that preceded Craig, with five chiefs in five years.

Duggan says the contract also includes another unusual provision.

“I said (to Craig), ‘I really don't like these rumors about other cities trying to recruit you. So if we're going to do this, there's going to be a provision in here for me, that says if you leave before you're contract is up, you have to pay the city the entire balance of the contract.’ He says, ‘I never heard of such a thing.’”

Duggan says morale is up under Craig and 911 response times are down. But shootings and homicides remain a problem.

Sarah Hulett is Michigan Public's Director of Amplify & Longform, helping reporters to do their best work.
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