Edward Tewes was appointed San Juan Bautista interim City Manager on March 19 at the San Juan Bautista City Council meeting in response to the recent resignation of Michaele LaForge.
Tewes is on a 90-day contract with a salary of $10,000 a month.
At the meeting, Tewes said one of his responsibilities is to help manage the search process of the next city manager. He said some applications have already been received.
“We’ve indicated that the first review of the applications will be at the end of this month,” Tewes said. “We anticipate a short list will be developed.”
He added that the council might interview the new city manager in May and start work July 1.
Residents welcomed back Tewes, as this is his second time serving as interim city manager. He took on the position when Roger Grimsley resigned in 2017.
“I appreciated your professionalism and the way you showed us how a city manager should perform,” said Darlene Boyd, a resident and former city planning commissioner.
Mayor Cesar Flores said the city was fortunate to have Tewes, and would be in trouble otherwise. As the council nodded in agreement, Councilman Dan De Vries said that was an understatement.
There was some discussion about LaForge receiving a bonus for meeting contractual goals. City Attorney Deborah Mall said the council decided LaForge was entitled to $10,000 for achieving two of four established goals:
- Getting two of the three State Water Resource Control Board compliance orders lifted
- Completing the fiscal year within the budget approved by the San Juan Bautista City Council
The two unrealized goals were hiring a director of public works and a community development director past the 60-day probation period; and completing 80 percent of the capital improvement project list in each category.
According to the agenda packet, “The council has determined that objectives No. 1 [water] and No. 3 [budget] were substantially accomplished.”
Mall said the evaluation of goals was scheduled to take place before the end of the fiscal year on June 30.
During public comment, Resident Jackie Morris spoke against approving the money for LaForge because she didn’t complete everything on the list.
“Whether it’s 45 percent or 65 percent, she didn’t hit the 100 mark so she shouldn’t get $10,000,” Morris said.
The council voted unanimously to give the bonus to LaForge.
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