Oct 18, 2022 - News

Duggan's missing financial disclosure form

Illustration of a manila folder opening like a door.

Illustration: Lindsey Bailey/Axios

Mayor Mike Duggan did not file a required conflict-of-interest disclosure form last year, public records show.

Why it matters: Duggan is campaigning in support of Prop 1, a Nov. 8 ballot issue that would require state officials to disclose income sources and other financial information.

What they're saying: "Since the beginning of his term the mayor has never had a conflict to report. He was surprised to find no report was filed in 2021 and assumes that with the focus on the COVID vaccine rollout in early 2021, it just got overlooked," Duggan spokesperson John Roach tells Axios. "He had no conflict in 2021 or in any other year."

State of play: Prop 1's passage could help repair Michigan's poor national reputation for government transparency.

  • Michigan and Idaho are the only two states that don't require lawmakers to file annual financial disclosure reports, crucial to identifying conflicts of interest.

Between the lines: Locally, Duggan sought to decrease opacity in 2015 with an executive order requiring the mayor and other Detroit officials to file annual financial disclosure statements.

Threat level: Duggan and the vast majority of city workers who filed a form did not list any potential conflicts of interest or outside sources of income.

Yes, but: Corporation Counsel Conrad Mallett, the city's top government lawyer, disclosed non-city employment income from Lear Corporation.

  • "Lear built a factory near the GM plant zero and received support in securing land …" Mallett's form reads. "When this work was done in 2021 I was deputy mayor and shielded from the transaction."

The bottom line: Financial disclosure documents provide valuable information to taxpayers about public servants' interests and activities.


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