Marrocco officially enters public works race

By: Julie Snyder | Mount Clemens - Clinton - Harrison Journal | Published April 14, 2016


MACOMB COUNTY — Looking to retain his position as Macomb County public works commissioner, Anthony Marrocco officially filed to run for re-election on April 4.

The Democrat’s challengers in the Aug. 2 primary election are Congresswoman Candice Miller, R-Harrison Township, and Warren Republican Joseph Hunt.

A lifelong Macomb County resident, Marrocco, 67, has held the elected position for six terms (24 years) after former Commissioner Thomas Welsh’s retirement.

Since 1992, Marrocco said he has undertaken drain construction, wastewater disposal services, subdivision plat reviews, soil erosion control, environmental education, pollution control, drain crossings and drain taps.

Under the drain code, Marrocco, who lives in Ray Township, is responsible for the location, establishment and construction of new county drains. He is also in charge of the operation and maintenance of over 950 county drains.

Marrocco said he’s the best candidate for the commissioner position, and he also believes that Macomb County has had successful leadership over the years, which is something he’s looking to continue.

“I want to continue the positive work done by many employers here in the county over the past 20 years.” said Marrocco, who also is co-manager of the Oakland-Macomb Interceptor Drain, which provides sewer service to 25 municipalities in Oakland and Macomb counties, with a population of over 800,000. “And I’ve always brought my department in under budget as long as I’ve been commissioner.”

Other major duties of the public works commissioner include administration of the Soil Erosion Control Act, review of subdivision plats, and management of the Chapoton and Martin retention basins.

Marrocco administers the county’s drainage system, Engineering Department, wastewater system, and oversees land development projects. Marrocco serves on the Huron-Clinton Metropolitan Authority Board of Commissioners as board treasurer, which governs 13 parks.

Marrocco went to Bellview Elementary School and Middle School in Eastpointe, before attending  Notre Dame High School in Harper Woods and then the University of Detroit. He has served on the Chippewa Valley Schools Board of Education and was a member of the Macomb County Board of Commissioners.

He said environmental educators are a forte in the commissioner’s office. In the last year alone, close to 12,000 Macomb County third- and fourth-graders have seen presentations by the public works environmental educators, which include demonstrations on recycling, water and urban environment, and pollution solutions.

“My goal (if re-elected) is to keep cleaning up the environment,” said Marrocco, who is also a longtime volunteer with the Adopt-A-Road program. “You can’t do it overnight.

“This isn’t a way for me to promote myself; it’s honestly my way of continuing to serve the people of Macomb County,” Marrocco said.

Miller, a resident of Harrison Township, was first elected to Congress in 2003 and is currently serving her seventh two-year term. She announced last year that she would not be seeking an eighth term serving the 10th District.

She announced her candidacy in the public works race in March, touching on key issues like clean water.

“Throughout my entire life, one of my principal advocacies has always been protecting our water; making sure we have clean, pure, fresh water,” she said last month. “Working to improve our environment so that our children and grandchildren can enjoy what we have had. And a big part of that means addressing inadequate, underground infrastructure for both our sewer and our water … and that really is what this office is principally responsible for. We need to make certain that the water that we drink is pure. We need to stop all of these sewer overflows that for decades have been fouling our waterways and closing our beaches.”

Hunt is no stranger to political races. He ran for mayor of Warren in 2011, Macomb County Board of Commissioners District 2 in 2012, state Senate District 9 in 2014, Warren City Council in 2015 and Warren city clerk in 2015.

The Madison Heights Bishop Foley High School graduate, who later went on to attend Macomb Community College, Ferris State University, and Specs Howard School of Broadcast Art, is currently employed as an information technology consultant.

Hunt said is seeking election as Public Works Commissioner because “I believe heavily in an equal opportunity democracy.”