Detroit EM, mayor-elect announce new finance chief


DETROIT — Detroit’s mayor-elect and its state-appointed emergency manager announced today that a former overseer of Washington, D.C., is their city’s new chief financial officer.

Emergency Manger Kevyn Orr and mayor-elect Mike Duggan say John Hill has taken immediate charge of running Detroit’s finances.

“John Hill brings a wealth of municipal finance and restructuring experience to Detroit,” Orr said in a statement. “John’s similar service in our nation’s capital will help move Detroit forward.”

Gov. Rick Snyder appointed Orr to run the city in place of its elected officials because of a chronic budget deficit and an accumulated long-term debt estimated at $18 billion. Orr also is seeking federal court approval to take Detroit under bankruptcy protection.

Hill is the former executive director of the District of Columbia Financial Control Board, which ran the city in 1995-2001.

Hill replaces Jim Bonsall, who resigned after publicity about his joking remark about the fatal shooting of black Florida teen Trayvon Martin.

“In interviewing Mr. Hill, I was very impressed with his successful history in Washington, D.C., and with his commitment to the importance of citizen input in the decision-making process,” said Duggan, who takes over Jan. 1 from retiring Mayor Dave Bing. “I strongly encouraged him to accept this position and I’m very pleased he has agreed to serve as Detroit’s CFO.”

Hill is a certified public accountant and the former chief executive of the Federal City Council, a not-for-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to the improvement of Washington.