Council Retreat to Address Policy Goals

Hoping to find a cohesive direction for the city before a permanent city manager comes on board, the City Council decided to hold a retreat to discuss a five-year plan and policy goals.

After an hourlong debate late Tuesday, council members decided to meet for at least a half-day session to discuss what type of policy they want the new city manager to implement.

At the retreat, they will discuss whether to use city employees to search for a new city manager or retain an outside consulting firm--at a cost of about $21,000--to conduct a nationwide search.

Last month, Tom Frutchey was fired as city manager after serving three years. Assistant City Manager Prisilla Hernandez is the interim manager until a long-term successor is hired.


At a time when the city is struggling to move in one direction, Councilman Tom Holden said it was imperative that the council meet to discuss its goals in depth.

“We are talking about policy issues and structure issues,” Holden said. “We are talking about the types of issues that should be brought before the council” by the new city manager.

Although Mayor Manuel Lopez initially disagreed with Holden, saying a retreat would be more appropriate once a permanent manager is hired, in the end all five members voted to set a date for the retreat by next week’s council session.