Sunday, January 16, 2022

Open Letter to Marco City Council


I am using this newspaper venue, instead of the “public comment” segment at a city council meeting, hoping for a more positive reaction than the typical “Thank you…next?”.

Councilors, with the recent hiring of professional Interim City Manager David Harden, Marco is finally emerging from an embarrassing situation. The missteps you made when seeking an Interim City Manager have value only if you prevent repeating them in the future. An excellent step would be revising your Rules of Procedure to:

  1. define the distinctions of “City Manager”, “Acting” City Manager and “Interim” City Manager.
  2. explain how an “Acting” City Manager is to be selected.
  3. clarify that a majority vote, (four, not five, of seven councilors) is required to hire an Interim City Manager.  

Regarding c) above, you mistakenly believed that a super majority of five votes was required to hire an Interim City Manager. That’s incorrect. Remarkably, only one councilor, (Roman), was sufficiently familiar with City bylaws to point out that only four votes, not five, were required to hire an Interim City Manager. The rest of Council unfortunately chose to ignore the assertion. You continued the misconception three times into their predictable failures.

Word count limitations prohibit fully explaining the correct process here, but it is provided in your “Rules of Procedure”. Fortunately, weeks later, Candidate Harden received SIX votes, rendering the question of minimum votes irrelative. He was hired.    

Councilors, you’ve an obligation to have this misunderstanding of procedure recorded for the benefit of Marco’s posterity. Procedural mistakes, though understandable, should not be allowed to become precedent. Will you honor that responsibility?



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