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Date of Issue: March 17, 2005

Maloney revisits city manager issue

Holmes Beach City Commissioner Don Maloney was to present a short video to the city commission last night (April 20) on the merits of a city manager form of government.

He said he wants Holmes Beach voters to decide if they want a city manager or not, and plans on having the question of sending the issue to the voters as a commission agenda item at the May 11 meeting.

If commissioners approve, the question will be placed on the Aug. 31 primary ballot.

"The basic language," said Maloney is "Should the City of Holmes Beach have a city manager?"

"It's no surprise from me because I've always been in favor of a city manager," he added.

In fact, Maloney is now presenting his video and giving his message on the merits of a city manager to various groups and organizations throughout the city. He's scheduled to be at the Rotary Club on April 27 for a presentation.

Maloney said he's also sent commissioners and the mayor a one-way memo on a city manager form of government and the video presentation.

Should Holmes Beach voters approve the measure in the August election, the city commission will then have to draft an ordinance to change the city charter.

"That will obviously take some time and require a lot of work," Maloney observed.

The 2001-02 charter review committee had recommended the city adopt a city manager form of government, but the then-city commission voted 3-2 not to present the issue to the voters.

If the commission again votes against allowing the question on a citywide ballot, Maloney has the option of taking the measure to the county commission for approval.

"With all the costs that we have now in the city, we need someone with business and professional experience" to run the city, said Maloney. "We can't afford not to have a city manager. There is just too much at stake."

Maloney said homeowners associations, condominium associations, civic groups and other organizations that would like to learn more on what a city manager could do for Holmes Beach should call him at 778-4865.

According to the Florida City and County Managers Association, 67 percent of all Florida cities have a city manager form of government. For cities with a population between 5,000 and 150,000, the figure rises to 95 pecent, the FCCM said.

All Florida cities incorporated since 1990 have adopted a council-city manager form of government, according to FCCM figures.