Detroit Official Quit over Contracts Awarded under Emergency Manager

October 25, 2013

A former top official in Detroit Mayor Dave Bing’s administration said he could no longer work for the city because of concerns over the way lucrative consulting contracts were awarded under emergency manager Kevyn Orr, according to his resignation letter obtained by the Free Press.

The resignation of Detroit chief procurement officer Andre DuPerry, whose last day on the job was Oct. 11, surprised many in city hall. He’d been recruited by Bing in 2009 to work as part of a crisis turnaround team to restore Detroit’s finances.

In a Sept. 27 letter to Bing, DuPerry — who oversaw the city’s purchasing operations — said he hadn’t intended to leave but could no longer work there in good conscience.

“The actions of the emergency manager (EM), his staff and consultants have made it impossible for me to feel confident that there is currently transparency, fairness and good judgment being exercised in the best interests of the people I serve,” DuPerry’s letter says. “The emergency manager’s inconsistency and lack of compliance with the competitive bid and contract approval processes is extremely concerning to me. ... I have on numerous occasions raised my concerns both verbally and in writing regarding the lack of contract management with regards to the consultants involved in restructuring.

“While there is no question that Detroit’s city government requires significant change,” the letter says, “what I have observed is an abuse of authority leading to waste of taxpayer dollars.”

Orr spokesman Bill Nowling dismissed the allegations outright. He also said DuPerry wasn’t asked to leave the city.

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