Commissioner-Elect Candice Miller says she will "clean up" public works office

Posted at 8:24 PM, Nov 09, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-09 20:24:39-05

Anthony Marrocco was Macomb County Public Works Commissioner for 24 years, and fought hard to keep his job.

He even loaned his campaign $1.1 million dollars, according to campaign finance records.

But on Tuesday, Macomb County voters elected Candice Miller, who told 7 Investigator Jim Kiertzner she's going to clean up the department.

"So many people came forward to me during the campaign and talked about pay to play politics and they couldn't get their permits unless they contributed," Miller told Kiertzner the day after the election.

Miller said she did not get a call from Marrocco conceding the race and congratulating her on a victory.

Miller, a Republican, teamed up with Democratic Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel to beat Marrocco and to change the culture in an office that handles millions of dollars in contracts for clean water and sewer projects, they say.

The last time 7 Action News talked with Marrocco during the campaign, he said, "You're a wonderful man, Jim Kiertzner. I love you! We are going to meet on November 9th."

Today, we showed up for that meeting. We were told Marrocco was not in and did not respond after we left.

One of his top appointees for the past 24 years is Dino Bucci, who is also an elected Macomb Township trustee.

Bucci dodged questions a couple of weeks ago after being accused in a civil lawsuit of trying to obtain a kickback of $75,000 from a businessman seeking permit refunds from the township.

"I'll just tell you right now, Dino Bucci, who is his top political operative there that is being sued for extortion, that kind of thing is not going to have a place in the Miller administration," Miller told Kiertzner.

The voters also decided that Derek Miller would not stay as county treasurer and Fred Miller would not replace the retiring clerk.

Both are Democrats and the county executive says they may have been too partisan.

"I think the voters said that's not what we're looking for. We're looking for change," Hackel said. "We want people who are going to work together here in Macomb County."

Bucci did not return calls about Candice Miller's comments today.

Hackel and Miller are planning to move into the public works office with forensic auditors to go through the books.

But how soon? Marrocco holds office until January 1.