City manager finalists make case to community

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Deric Feacher addresses residents on Saturday at a forum at the Midtown Cultural & Educational Center.
DUANE D. FERNANDEZ SR./HARDNOTTSPHOTOGRAPHY.COM

BY ANDREAS BUTLER 
DAYTONA TIMES                                                                                   

On March 20, local residents met with the finalists for the city manager position in Daytona Beach.

The three finalists are Haines City Manager Deric Feacher; Terence R. Moore, city manager of College Park, Georgia; and Terry K. Suggs, Putnam County administrator. They met with residents during a forum on Saturday at the Midtown Cultural & Educational Center hosted by the City of Daytona Beach.

Despite rain, the event was well-attended.

Candidates spoke on their qualifications, experiences and backgrounds, and why they think they’re the best person for the job.

They also fielded questions from the audience on a wide range of issues, including the allocation of funds and resources, diversity, infrastructure, youth, attracting businesses and development.

A city manager acts as the chief executive officer for the city, executing the policy goals set by the city commission. It includes overseeing all daily operations, representing the city to other governments and performing other executive duties as outlined in the city charter.

The city manager is hired directly by the city commission.

Saturday’s forum was held with sessions with the candidates inside the center’s gym, dance hall and activity room simultaneously.

“We did it this way to spread things out and ensure social distancing in regards to the coronavirus,’’ said Daytona Beach Communications Manager Susan Cerbone on the format of the event.

Attendees wore face coverings or masks,and chairs were spread out.

Originally, there were five finalists, but the number has dwindled to three. Caryn Gardner-Young dropped out before the forum while Thomas J. Hutka dropped out weeks ago.

 “This was an excellent opportunity for the community and businesses to view the candidates. I think it was a good format. We won’t hire the city manager, but we can let our commissioners know our thoughts,’’ said Daytona resident Luke McCoy Sr.

More information on the hiring of the next city manager will appear in Thursday’s issue of the Daytona Times.

For more information on the finalists, visit www.codb.us/CityManagerSearch.

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