UPDATE: Is Charles (Pugh) Still In Charge Of City Council?
Detroit voters said in 2009 that they wanted Charles Pugh in charge of their City Council. It was understood.
However, Pugh hasn't exactly been a regular at the Council table recently, according to the Detroit Free Press. And as Council reels from the departure of Kwame Kenyatta--who wasn't winning any attendance awards either--and the expected departure of Gary Brown for the EM's staff, others on Council are worried Pugh's infrequent attendance could prevent them from conducting business.
Freep: “Where is the president?” Councilman Ken Cockrel Jr. asked his colleagues this morning, noting that Pugh has missed three formal sessions in a row of the full council.
The council is considering whether to drastically alter its structure, in part, due to Pugh’s ongoing, unexplained absences.
With Council expected to be down to just seven members by close of business today and Pugh's absence, the normally nine-member Council is struggling to have quorum at committee meetings. Council committees consist of just three members plus Council President Pugh as an ex-officio member. So, what's left of Council is preparing to reconfigure their committee structure to ensure they can continue to meet formally.
In the meantime, where Charles Pugh has gone is something of a mystery. In addition to not showing up for work, he's removed his public social media pages, and the Free Press claims they've been unable to reach him.
UPDATE: Turns out, though his colleagues apparently didn't know it, Pugh is on sick leave. Gary Brown explains in the Free Press.
Freep: But after this morning’s meeting Council President Pro Tem Gary Brown, who presided over the meeting, said that he received a memo from Pugh’s office today indicating that Pugh is taking a four-week sick leave. Brown said he saw Pugh last week and he did not have an appearance of being ill.