There are several topics addressed by Rene Neff in the July 25th issue of the South Whidbey Record that need clarification:
1. Leadership in the transition time: A Council-elected Mayor would be immediately in place to provide leadership and represent the city in many matters. An interim administrator, many of whom are generally available and can be found fairly easily though regular networking channels, would be appointed by Council as staff continue with their specialties, like the budget development that is regularly run by Debbie.
John McFarland, skilled county human resources expert, has offered to go to work pro bono for Langley forthwith on a search for a manager, which he feels would yield fruit fairly quickly. Unlike in mayoral elections, one or more town open meetings would be held to give input on desired qualifications and temperament e.g., specialties in city organization, environmental orientation, economic development, planning, budgeting, etc. There is no reason for Langley to be “leaderless for months.”
2. Costs and savings of the Council-Manager form: The presenters at the 7/21 Town Meeting, three seasoned managers of cities large and small and the Mayor of Samamish, were strong in their assertion that managers work for and gain efficiency with their cities, often dramatically. Even a modest 5% improvement in efficiency