Former East St. Louis mayor named new city manager

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EAST ST. LOUIS (KPLR) - The East St. Louis City Council fired the town’s recently elected city manager over the vocal objections of citizens attending the council meeting. But the new manager is the man who just lost his bid for re-election – former mayor Alvin Parks.

East St. Louis Mayor Emeka Jackson-Hicks took office in April and quickly discovered the city had major financial problems, including a projected deficit of $5.7 million this year alone.

The potential of layoffs and firings of some department heads may have prompted three council members to go around her authority and install former mayor Alvin Parks as city manager.

People in the attendance demanded to know the reason for suddenly firing city manager Tracy Chapman, a person they had voted for several months ago.

Parks will make $100,000 a year as city manager, approximately twice as much as he was making as mayor. Jackson-Hicks said if voters wanted Parks at city hall they would have simply re-elected him.

Under the East St. Louis city charter, the city manager has the real power, with the authority to hire and fire department heads.

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