DETROIT
03/08/2012 11:47 am ET

William Cooper, Hamtramck City Manager, Fired As City Faces Payless Paydays

Hamtramck City Council voted to fire City Manager William Cooper Wednesday, following a distressing financial report he issued warning of impending payless paydays.

After a contentious debate, Mayor Karen Majewski cast the decisive vote to fire Cooper, WXYZ reports.

In a memo circulated Tuesday, Cooper reported reduced tax revenues of $600,000 per year from American Axle and $1 million per year lost from the General Motors Pole Town plant, as well as declining property taxes.

In late February, auto parts supplier American Axle laid off 300 blue-collar workers from its manufacturing plant on Holbrook and I-75, which it plans to close permanently.

Hamtramck must raise $500,000 by the end of the month or see payless paydays as early as March 28, according to WXYZ.

The city now faces a total budget shortfall of $2 million, according to WDIV, putting it at risk for a state takeover and the appointment of an emergency manager.

This would not be Hamtramck's first brush with financial crisis or state receivership.

Hamtramck considered filing for bankruptcy in 2010, but its efforts were rebuffed by Gov. Jennifer Granholm's administration.

During another financial crisis in 2000, Gov. John Engler appointed Louis Schimmel as the city's emergency financial manager, a position he held for six years.

Schimmel is currently the emergency manager of Pontiac.

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