Inspector General Report Accuses Detroit Mayor of Giving Program Special Treatment, Chief of Staff Deleting Emails

A new report by Detroit’s Inspector General criticizes Mayor Mike Duggan for giving preferential treatment to a health program without considering similar agencies. It also accuses a top official of deliberately deleting key emails.

The report finds that mayoral Chief of Staff Alexis Wiley of ordering officials to delete emails regarding the Make Your Date prenatal health program.

Inspector General Ellen Ha says Duggan failed to operate in the best interests of city government.

“He chose Make Your Date without considering any other agency or non-profit organizations,” Ha said. “And that’s what we found troubling because that selection should have been through a fair, open and transparent process.”

An attorney for the mayor counters that the report shows Duggan did not violate any laws or city policies and that most of the deleted e-mails were recovered and have been posted on the city’s website for several months.

The attorney adds that the report could unfairly damage the reputation of public servants like Wiley.

Ha argues that it’s the job of her office to point out potential wrongdoing.

“We don’t take pride in individuals, especially city employees, receiving negative publicity. But sometimes publicity such as like this may serve as a deterrence to others from behaving in such manner,” Ha said.

The Inspector General is recommending that Wiley and two staff members she ordered to delete emails receive disciplinary action.

Wiley responded to Ha’s report on Twitter. “I have spent my life building a career based on integrity,” Wiley wrote. 

“In my 10 years as a reporter and 6 years in government, my integrity has never once been questioned. I would never knowingly do anything that would jeopardize or undermine that.” — Alexis Wiley, Mayor Mike Duggan’s chief of staff.

Wiley says she strongly disagree’s with the OIG’s findings and was truthful with Ha’s office.

Ha tells WDET’s Quinn Klinefelter Duggan should have operated Detroit’s city government in a far more open manner.

Click on the audio link above to hear the full interview with Detroit Inspector General Ellen Ha


  • Quinn Klinefelter
    Quinn Klinefelter is a Senior News Editor at 101.9 WDET. In 1996, he was literally on top of the news when he interviewed then-Senator Bob Dole about his presidential campaign and stepped on his feet.