City of Destin May Rehire Greg Kisela


City Manager Discussion

“We would not exceed his previous contract,” Dixon recommends of a pay and benefits package.
Some heads were shaking on the dais.
Councilwoman Prebble Ramswell said she would like to do some “due diligence,” as she’s never met Kisela.
“Despite my hesitance of never meeting him, I do have a good feeling about him,” she said. “He did say he would be most interesting in speaking with us.”
“I’d be willing to go as high as our current city manager’s package,” Ramswell said of the salary package.
Foreman suggests having Kisela “make the first move” on negotiations.
“I know we probably can’t pay him what he’s making where he’s at,” Dixon added.
Kisela is currently the city manager in Port Orange, Florida. Previously he spent time as the Walton County administrator.
Ponder said Kisela did have a “willingness” to come back to Destin, but talks were just very basic.
Jimmy Neilson says Kisela is a “great fit” and he’s not “scared.”
“He stated to me, ‘I would come back for what I left at, ‘” Neilson says.
The motion to pursue Kisela and enter negotiations is approved 6-0. Councilwoman Sandy Trammell is not in attendance.
“I will go out and try to negotiate with Mr. Kisela,” Ponder said.
With that said, this meeting is adjourned.
Thanks for following along. Have a good night.


City Manager Discussion

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Councilman Jim Foreman says this is an “unusual situation,” given that this is the time of year the city has to “get some things done,” such as the budget. He said he would prefer for the city to not go out to bid.
“We have an opportunity right now… to bring someone in who is already experienced,” he said. “He would be the idea candidate for this job.”
Councilman Jim Wood is seconding the motion made by Foreman to re-hire Kisela.
Kisela has previously stepped down to pursue an opportunity in Walton County. He served in Destin for about 7 years.
Councilman Tuffy Dixon says that Kisela would be a good choice, but as a city council they need to give the mayor some “parameters” for the negotiation process.
He said they need to determine a salary limit and benefit package ahead of time.


City Manager Discussion

Tonight’s meeting is set to discuss the next step after City Manager Marynn Ustick’s resignation last week. She will serve the city until August.
Mayor Mel Ponder is giving the room and his colleagues an overview.
“I am very sad to see her go,” he said. “Thanks for sticking around and helping us for the next 60 days, we are going to need it.”
Ponder says the city is considering replacing “one great city manager with another,” as the way forward.
There are currently two contracts in front of the council. One is Ustick’s, while the other is that of former city manager Greg Kisela.


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