Dearborn Heights – The Dearborn Heights City Council voted 5-2 on May 14 to override mayor Daniel Paletko’s veto of their motion to approve the hiring of Southfield law firm Ottenwess, Taweel and Schenk, PLC to file a complaint against the mayor.
The Council had filed a lawsuit against the mayor without a vote that was thrown out by Third Circuit Court Judge Muriel Hughes.
Council Chair Denise Malinowski-Maxwell, who had originally filed the suit without asking the Council to vote on it, said in a special meeting on May 9 that the judge dismissed the lawsuit without prejudice and wanted the Council to continue voting on it.
Both Paletko and City Attorney Gary Miotke disagreed with Malinowski-Maxwell. The council voted 4-2 at the time to refile the suit. Councilmen Dave Abdallah and Robert Constan both dissented while Councilman Ray Muscat abstained.
Abdallah appeared visibly upset that had had not been informed of the lawsuit before it was filed and repeatedly asked which Council members had prior knowledge that the suit would be filed.
Only Muscat responded that he had no idea the suit would be filed. The mayor subsequently vetoed the lawsuit.
At the May 14 meeting, the Council super vetoed the mayor. Malinowski-Maxwell reiterated her original motion to hire the firm and investigate misappropriated city funds after much heated deliberation and protests from the mayor.
Malinowski-Maxwell asked the mayor to sign the original motion by May 15 or he’d be charged with a misdemeanor. At press time, the mayor had not signed it.