Hamtramck: Back to Square One

June 26, 2013
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An article in this week’s Metro Times by editorial intern Tommy Zimmer examines the various reasons the city of Hamtramck was recently deemed by the  state to be in a state of financial crisis.

On Wednesday, not long after the paper hit the streets, it was announced that the job of cleaning up the mess has been handed to Cathy Square.

She will become emergency manager of Hamtramck, a Wayne County city with about 22,000 residents, on July 1.

It is the second time the city, which is surrounded by Detroit, has fallen under state control.  Under the former emergency financial manager law, which was less sweeping than the current law, an outside manager controlled the city’s finances from 2000 to 2007.

One thing that’s different this time around is that the Hamtramck City Council, using a provision of the new emergency manager law that took effect earlier this year, voted to seek the appointment of an outside manager.

Square has worked in Pontiac’s human resources and public works departments since 2011. Prior to that, she was director of Detroit’s Department of Public Works and director of the Greater Detroit Resource Recovery Authority during the Kwame Kilpatrick administration.

“Cathy Square’s extensive municipal government experience, specifically in Southeast Michigan, makes her well-suited to assume the duties of emergency manager for Hamtramck,” Gov. Rick Snyder said in a statement announcing Square’s appointment.