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An old emergency manager order may block part of Flint's new city charter from taking effect

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steve carmody
Michigan Radio
Flint voters approved reinstating the city's ombudsman office as part of changes to the city charter.

An edict from a former Flint emergency manager stands in the way of a plan to reinstate the city's ombudsman office.

Flint voters approved changes to their city charter in August.  The new city charter is scheduled to take effect in January. The changes include reinstating the city’s ombudsman office.   

But former emergency manager Micheal Brown eliminated the city’s internal government watchdog office.   The intent was to save money. 

The order prevents the office from being reinstated until a year after the end of state oversight. That hasn't happened yet.

“We can write the best charter in the world,” said John Cherry, vice chair of the Flint Charter Review Commission. “If it’s not followed...it really means nothing.”

This week, commissioners plan to ask the state board still overseeing Flint to overturn the old emergency manager order.

The final decision will be up to the state Treasury Department. 

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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