By Coastal Breeze News Staff
At its meeting on March 19th, the city council passed the chairman’s gavel from Jerry Gibson to Larry Magel. When the matter came up, Chairman Gibson immediately and graciously nominated Mr. Magel. There were no other nominations, and the same procedure followed for the election, with Magel nominating Joe Batte as vice chairman. The election was unusual in that the next city vote will be moved to November to coincide with the national election; so the terms of chairman and vice chairman will be eight months rather than a full year.
Jerry Gibson thoughtfully looked back on his challenging year, stating, “I was deeply privileged to have served my community as chairman. Marco Island is, and always will be, a unique and very special place and I’m delighted to call it my home. I’m proud of the accomplishments of the city council, my colleagues, the city manager and the staff in a year of a very difficult economy. Notwithstanding all the hurdles, we came through with a surplus, and we improved the quality of life as well as the appearance of Marco Island. I know Larry will be a superb chairman, and Joe will be the same as vice chairman. We demonstrated that council members may have different views, but can resolve them amicably and effectively. I look forward to continue working with all of them.”
As he assumes the chairmanship Larry Magel emphasizes that he will be concentrating on more open dialogue with Marco Islanders, particularly in ensuring that the people receive the facts, rather than rumors that swirl around the community. He said, “I’m deeply honored to have been elected chairman, and I am dedicated to serving the people of Marco Island. People of good will can, and do, succeed in improving their lives by receiving correct information and making their views known and discussed. Our city manager and our dedicated council members are committed to giving our constituents the best and least intrusive government we can. I particularly thank Jerry Gibson for his year of service as chairman. Not only was he a calm voice of reason, but he was an extraordinary representative for the city council at myriad public events.”