Dear Mayor and City Council,
Congratulations on your selection of David Harden as Interim City Manager. Dianne and I sat in the audience during the interview process and were impressed with his general demeanor as well as his specific answers to your questions. While some of my recollections of his statements may be slightly out of context, I heard him say that:
Character is important, you either have it or you don’t,Maintaining transparency is very important and is the nature of local government today,Everyone on the Council will get the same information from him,Accessibility to the manager’s office is necessary,Internal controls in the City need to be addressed, andWe can never be like we were in the past.
These are all worthwhile positions and should make Mr Harden a welcome change as City Manager. We were also impressed with his characterization of himself as a “detail person” who likes to get into the “nitty-gritty of things” and as someone who will meet with all City employees as soon as possible. It is along these latter lines that I think the Council can greatly benefit from Mr Harden’s tenure at the City. He will no doubt learn much of both good and bad at City Hall in his six to nine months with us and, since he has no desire to continue as permanent City Manager, will be in a good position to give Council an honest appraisal of what he finds untarnished by any possible future benefits.
I personally would have liked the City to fill the interim Manager position from within the ranks but I also understand the unusual situation in which the City finds itself these days. Oh well, it’s only money. Even though Dianne and I both liked Mr Harden best of the finalists, neither one of us thought that you, as Council, would have picked him. We made our usual bet with each other (loser buys dinner at the Wasabi Bowl) and she picked candidate #3 while I picked candidate #4 as your likely choices. Nice to be proven wrong. Hope Mr Harden is as good as he seems on paper and sounds in person.
618 Ruth St
Port Orange, FL 32127