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Robert Higgs
By Robert Higgs January 27, 2011

Assistant U.S. attorney tapped for watchdog role

A major plank in Ed FitzGerald"s campaign for Cuyahoga County executive was restoring integrity and faith in a county government tainted by corruption scandals.

During his campaign, FitzGerald pledged to hire an inspector general. Appointment of an inspector general also was recommended by transition advisers preparing for the changeover from the three-commissioner system of government to the new charter government.

On Jan. 13 FitzGerald announced his choice of Nailah Byrd, an assistant U.S. attorney in Cleveland and a daughter of former Cleveland schools chief Barbara Byrd-Bennett. Byrd will earn $132,000 a year and be responsible for investigating fraud, abuse and waste.

Byrd came to Cleveland from New York in 2002. She worked at the Squire, Sanders & Dempsey law firm and was senior counsel at National City Bank before joining the Northern District office of the U.S. attorney in August. Previously, she was an assistant district attorney in New York City.

Based on that hiring, we move the Fitz-O-Meter to Promise Kept.

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