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Chicago mayor names his pick for housing agency

CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has announced the nomination of Michael R. Merchant to head the Chicago Housing Authority, one day after the previous housing authority chief's resignation was made public.

The mayor announced the nomination in a statement Wednesday. Charles Woodyard's resignation was announced Tuesday at a CHA board meeting.

Merchant is an attorney who has served as the commissioner of the city's department of buildings since the beginning of the Emanuel administration. He served as deputy director in the Mayor's Office of Intergovernmental Affairs during Mayor Richard M. Daley's administration.

The CHA board will meet later this month to consider Merchant's candidacy.

Emanuel says Merchant's main responsibility will be to implement a plan to develop additional housing units and make maximum use of available properties.

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