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Here’s The Scoop …. Town Managers Going For The Next “Brass Ring”… Part 2 …

May 5, 2010 by Barbara


Dear Readers… As the former Town Manager and her trusty side-kick JohnO look for yet another municipality to conquer …they are not alone in their quest for “catching the brass ring” of big bucks in salary-benefits- and accrued and unused holiday/sick leave to add to their growing nest eggs…the perks that most certainly leave these government workers sitting pretty in their twilight years…courtesy of the taxpayers, many of whom will be struggling themselves when able to retire and not knowing what was offered up to those who ride the merry-go-round of a Town Administrator’s professional life by way of their elected officials when the dotted line of those brand new contracts are signed!…

In part 1 (prev. post) was the newest Town Managers to hop back on board their solitary gold horses and take another spin…In part 2 we will look at a few more of the recent firings and hirings…and what was offered to get them out the door… or in ….along with who take the merry-g0-round …It makes one wonder if they have a special pass …reserved “horses …and get added miles credited for the number of times they gone round and round!….


“Cape Coral city manager job pulls a pile of interest 75 applications arrive for manager position — There may be a bargain out there waiting to be picked as the next city manager in Cape Coral. The city has received 75 applications for the seat resigned by Terry Stewart last November, but an initial review has reduced the stack to 29 applicants. The application period ends April 30. Many of the applicants listed a preferred salary. Stewart’s pay was $165,000 a year, and he worked up to that over an eight-year period. Only two of the dozen applicants who listed a preferred pay level put down a number higher than Stewart’s. Applicants from Cape Coral are Interim city manager Carl Schwing, retired financial services executive Gary King and former international executives Michael Siegel and Thomas Leipold. Previously, City Councilman Peter Brandt said he’d like to see someone from the private sector get the job. But so far the search has turned up candidates mostly with government careers and a few from the business sector, according to a review of the resumes Tuesday by The News-Press. Someone who can get projects completed would be good for the city, said resident Tony Sanderlin, 30. “It seems like these roads are always under construction,” Sanderlin said, gesturing toward Santa Barbara Boulevard and Hancock Bridge Parkway. Two-thirds of the applications come from southeastern states and the remainder from as far away as California. Almost all applicants have a master’s degree, often in public administration. The most distant applicant appears to be Deborah Edgerly, former city manager of Oakland, Calif. She served under former Mayor Jerry Brown, but was removed when a new administration came into power, according to her application. City council members will start their discussion after the application period closes. They made a false start Monday on the impression the period had closed April 15. But Mayor John Sullivan explained in a memo to council members that the city had already paid to advertise the position through April 30 and will keep the job posting active to get the most return for its money. Cape Coral businessman Jerry Valchine said he hopes the city finds someone with the qualities of Ronald Reagan, including fiscal conservatism and an ability to work hard and be a visionary. Valchine, who owns Pack & Send Gifts on Hancock Bridge Parkway, said he wants a manager who can produce a conservative, balanced budget.”

BC- Below are two of the applicants that also put their names in for the Interim TM position on April 26th (prev. post)…

“Mark Lauzier – Coral Springs
•Experience: president, owner The Budget Experts
•Education: master’s in public administration, University of New Haven
•Other: assistant city manager Pompano Beach for nine years

Michael Mahaney, Deerfield Beach
•Experience: Deerfield Beach city manager until last January
•Education: MBA, James Madison University
•Other: Nassau County administrator, Fernandina Beach, three years”



“Unpopular Pompano Beach manager gets $140k for quitting The Pompano Beach City Commission wasn’t too impressed with their manager of about two years, Keith Chadwell. But he’s getting a nice parting paycheck even though his contract didn’t call for it. Chadwell submitted a letter of resignation at last night’s city commission meeting. He proposed that he leave June 12, be paid nine months salary (that equals about $140,000) in exchange for agreeing not to sue. The commission quickly agreed despite the fact that his contract calls for that sum if he was fired — not if he qui. Asked if the deal was a good deal for taxpayers, Mayor Lamar Fisher said: “No comment. I think the action by the city commission was in the best interests of the city of Pompano Beach.” Earlier this year, City Commissioner Rex Hardin made a motion to fire Chadwell but it failed on a 3-3 vote, he said. Commissioners have said that Chadwell failed to follow through on their direction and when interacting with the public. Hardin said he was the only commissioner to reject the severance last night. “I didn’t feel it was appropriate to dole out taxpayer dollars in that manner as basically a bonus for leaving,” he said. Word had spread to commissioners that Chadwell might resign. But City Commissioner George Brummer questions whether someone nudged Chadwell to quit. “It certainly looked like this thing was staged,” he said. “Somebody worked this thing out.” Chadwell said in an interview that he has another ”opportunity” in the public sector but declined to be specific except to say that it isn’t in Broward. He said that people on behalf of the mayor — he wouldn’t say who — negotiated with him for his departure. “The arrangement under which I am leaving was certainly negotiated — there was an amicable quid pro quo,” Chadwell said. ”

BC- Tells those in LBTS who really believed our former TM would have left w/out her big payola severance they are working with a few too many screws loose!…Again, originally TM Colon wanted a 5 yrs severance!..



New Pompano Beach City Manager Could Be At Work by December  And then there were four. Next month Pompano Beach commissioners will interview the final round of four candidates vetted by The Mercer Group for the city manager position that could pay $175,000 to $195,000. They are: –Dennis Beach, who has served as city manager in Fort Pierce for over 13 years; –T.C. Broadnax, a former Pompano Beach assistant and deputy city manager and currently one of the assistant city managers in San Antonio, Texas; –Gary Shimun, Davie Town Administrator and former assistant city manager in Pembroke Pines; –James Twombly, former city manager in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. Connie Hoffman, senior vice president of the consulting firm, will bring the four finalists to city hall for interviews for one-on-one meetings with each commissioner as well as one at a time before the full commission on Nov. 2 and Nov. 3. Hoffman also will have the candidates meet with senior staffers, take them on a tour of the city and hold a public reception on a date to be determined. Hoffman said the new hire could begin working by December or January, depending upon whether they are leaving a job or selling a home. “The commission had said they would do an independent background check on the candidate they select, so that will add some time to the selection process,” Hoffman said. Despite the economy, Hoffman said it’s not a buyer’s market for cities looking for new chief executives. “People who have a job they are secure in tend to be more conservative about looking right now,” she said. “When you are a city manager and put your name out as looking for a job, your city commission can get upset about that and it can cause rifts. The other issue is people are afraid they can’t sell their homes to move to a new community. It’s affecting the market for recruiting.” Hoffman said despite those issues she is confident about the four candidates city leaders are considering and called them “excellent.” The winner of the job will replace Keith Chadwell, who resigned in June, two years into a five year contract, to become one of three deputy city managers in Durham, North Carolina. Chadwell’s replacement will oversee 716 employees and a $215 million budget.”

BC- $175-195,000 for 716 employees and a $215 mil. budget… former TM Colon $162,000+ for a town with 20+ employees and a budget of less than $15 mil!….



Last time this writer posted in any length about Bob Baldwin it was to post his attempts to find another top spot outside of his Lake Worth gig…(the town LBTS Human Resources Mgr. Kathy O’Brien/TM Esther Colon said he was compensated for while working in “on leave” to the tune of $30,000+ despite his memos/contract stipulating his “consulting” stints “up to 10 weeks” were to be unpaid) …He tried for Pompano Beach…and Dania Beach …and ?….. According to the Lake Worth blogger Baldwin had some issues as she described the new City Manager….

“As an objective of performance reviews is to compare one person to another at the same job level–who do we compare her to? Bob Baldwin in Dania? Susan Stanton is paid $150,000 a year. Bob Baldwin was paid $170,000 when he was city manager in Lake Worth, a guy who never showed up for work and one of a few for whom I hold responsible for the state of our City today. Doesn’t Susan deserve better? I propose a two or three year contract with a raise. Not only is she underpaid in this job but Lake Worth has one extra component most cities do not have–a Utility department. For a city of this size, her pay is under the scale. She informs the Commission on everything she knows that is going on in this City working unbelievable hours to turn it all around.”

“City Attorney Larry Karns will negotiate a contract with Stanton. The city is offering Stanton an annual salary of $150,000, a $500-a-month car allowance and other benefits.

Stanton could not be reached for comment today.

She has offered to start work two weeks after her contract is final, said Connie Hoffmann, vice president of The Mercer Group, which conducted the city manager search.”

BC- According to the Commission minutes from Nov. 25, 2008 in Dania Beach when their City Manager Plato wanted out, the Manager asked to move his retirement up to Dec.31, 2008 and keep his severance package until April 30, 2009. He would continue on the payroll until that date…The Commission concurred with his request to retire and the date…and mention was made for the payments of unused sick and vacation time…and added the the Manager would continue to accrue more vacation sick and vacation time between Dec. 31st and April 30th…One Comm. agreed to health ins. benefits but not to continuing to accrue the sick/vacation time…With that the City Manager withdrew his Dec. 31st request if he could not receive his benefits..but offered to forgo only the sick leave accrual … Another Comm. thought all benefits should continue …while another thought the pension benefits were ok…but not the accrued sick/ vacation ..citing salary, retirement and health ins….In the end the Commission approve the Dec. 31st retirement without the accrued sick/vacation accrued from Jan 1, 2009-April 30, 2009 ….

On Jan 17,2009 Dania Beach had a City Manager Interview Workshop…at 1:15 pm…

Bob Baldwin ….portions of the interview….

“Robert Baldwin, applicant for city manager, provided an overview of his work experience. He said he has identified and dealt with complex problems in both service delivery and administration. Mr. Baldwin keeps the Commission informed and treats them all the same. He indicated that staff and elected officials think he is loyal, ethical and professional. A single event he is proud of is the annexation in Lauderdale-By-The-Sea; however he was unable to bring the city together, in spite of charter changes he suggested. He indicated once they started communicating with the residents they began to come around and become part of the city.”

“He said he would be accessible to the public and Commission, and that he returns calls and tries to solve problems.”

“Mr. Baldwin advised his career has been in Broward County, and he is familiar with the players, which would help in dealing with the county. He commented that in order to get things done, you have to have confidence in your staff and delegate. Department Heads are hired to do a job and should be allowed to do it; you can be hands- on in a small city, but not a large city. Mr.Baldwin said Lake Worth is a great community but it is a city in chaos. He noted that one of his weaknesses is he gets close to employees and it is hard to leave someone without a job.”

“He is currently working on a policy manual for green initiatives which he will completer before he leaves lake Worth.”

“Mr. Baldwin would like to see a community work together, and the only thing you can do is to reach out and make them feel like part of the community.”

“He said code compliance officers are going to customer service training because they need to put a better face on code compliance and how they enforce the code”

“Mr. Baldwin believes he has a record of getting the job done with integrity and respect and he will use these same qualities in Dania Beach. If selected he wants to work as a part of a team with Commission, staff and citizens.”

BC- Quite something…when you compare the Lake Worth bloggers of the outgoing Manager Baldwin and his presentation for a new position… and what we here in LBTS recall…from him and his “hire” former TM Colon….

On Jan.20, 2009,  the Dania Beach City Manager Selection meeting took place at 7 pm…according to the minutes the firm of Colin Baenzinger & Assoc. were the chosen search firm …the same firm that was used for Pompano Beach when Baldwin was in the running for the job ..(prev. posts)…and neglected to do a full background check according to a series by JP Bender of the Pompano Sentry on the Manager hired (Cadwell)… The candidates were read aloud with the Comms. votes…Robert Baldwin was ranked 4 Comm. votes… seeing Baldwin as the most experienced…

BC- The question now for the newest merry-go-round “riders”…murmurs that City Manager Bob Baldwin will hire Colon/Olinzock in Dania Beach?….. Or will Colon/Olinzock (some are surmising they must be a team…with promises made….due to his actions as Int. TM with her payout and his own termination with no payout until a full inquiry is done and reviewed by the Commission)….head for Miami Lakes… North Bay…Hallandale…Fort Lauderdale…etc…etc…etc…. And of course…who will “catch the LBTS brass ring”…

Note to all those “brass ring” municipalities …..GOOGLE!….

Part 3 is next….

more to come….

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