State Attorney General to Troy: Call Election or We'll Take You to Court
Richard Bandstra, chief legal counsel for State Attorney General Bill Schuette, responds to the City's Tuesday letter refuting the need for a February election to replace recalled mayor Janice Daniels.
The chief legal counsel for Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette has told Troy: Either order a special election on Feb. 26, 2013, or face litigation.
Troy leaders, however, continue to fight with the state for the ability to hold off on electing a new mayor until November of next year.
"After careful review of the provisions of Michigan's Election Law and the City of Troy Charter, it is the position of this office that a special election should have been called for February 2013 to fill the remainder of the unexpired term following the recent successfull recall of former Mayor Janice Daniels," Schuette's Chief Legal Counsel Richard Bandstra wrote.
In the two-page letter from Bandstra to Troy City Attorney Lori Grigg Bluhm and other city administrators, Bandstra gave city administrators until 1 p.m. this Friday to respond.
"In the event that this office does not receive a favorable response," he wrote, "this office will be compelled to initiate litigation."
But Bluhm said the Attorney General's office has misinterpreted her argument and defense of Troy's City Charter, which she maintains allows the city to appoint someone to fill the vacancy until next November.
"I will make every effort to avoid a lawsuit, and therefore I plan to respond to the letter by the designated time," Bluhm said Thursday evening. "Unfortunately, the letter misinterprets the City’s legal argument.
"The City is not claiming that our Charter trumps state law. Instead, since there are two conflicting State Statutes, the City is obligated to follow the path that allows us to uphold both state law and our charter."
To read the letter from Bandstra to Bluhm – as well as previous correspondence between the city and the state – please see the attached PDF files.