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Former city manager to receive extra pay

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Wade will get lump sum payment for sick, vacation time

 

VICKIE LILLO

For the Times

During a special meeting May 22 before the regular Quincy City Commission meeting, commissioners voted 4-1 to give an additional sum as sick/vacation pay to former city manager Mike Wade, who recently retired after 30 years of employment with the city.

Interim City Manager Jack McLean Jr. told the council, “He’s been a long-time employee, has had no salary increase in four years, has served city hall, and he’s requesting $9,000 as sick/vacation pay,” McLean said. This request was outside the terms of his contract. 

“Have we ever done a contract and then gone outside of it?  Are we setting a precedent?” Mayor Pro-Tem Keith Dowdell asked. With a headshake, he added, “I’m not in favor of that.”

He cast the dissenting vote.

This led directly into discussion about McLean’s employment because he is temporarily serving the community as city manager, without pay, during this time of transition.

 Commissioner Andy Gay expressed appreciation for McLean’s service.

During time for citizen comment, Freda Bass-Prieto said working without a contract means McLean is working outside of Florida’s “Sunshine” laws, referring to statutes about openness in government, including meetings, records and voting deliberations required to be available to the public.

She also noted that McLean has sued the city in the past.

“Isn’t that a conflict of interest,” she asked.

She also urged commissioners to keep a close eye on the city’s financial situation.

She wanted commissioners to make a commitment “that when Jack McLean leaves, the city of Quincy will not be looking at bankruptcy again.”

In other business:

*Commissioners voted unanimously to donate two parcels of city-owned land to the county in order for a roundabout to be constructed at MLK Jr. and Atlanta streets. In order for the project to proceed, Bernard Piawah, the city’s building and planning director, permission from the department of Environmental Protection would also be necessary, since DEP funding had been used to develop one of those plots into a golf driving range.

Mayor Angela Sapp said, “A roundabout is moving progressively.  It’s a move in the right direction.”

*Alex Sink, executive director of Quincy Main Street, reported that the organization recently received a grant for walking tour brochures, and he asked for a letter from the city for “wayfinder” signs.

 “We are trying to beautify downtown,” he said.

*In her remarks at the close of the regular meeting, Sapp praised those involved with the cleanup event Saturday, May 19. She thanked the various city departments who helped with the picnic and health fair - Fire, Police, Public Works, plus Parks and Recreation – and gave credit to Bernard Piawah, for supplying the list of properties that were blighted.

“I’m all about changing where we’re going,” she said. “We have to make this a place where people want to live, where people want to put their kids in school.”