The city of Richmond Hill and former city manager Mike Melton have reached an agreement on a severance package, according to Mayor Harold Fowler.
Fowler said Melton accepted the severance offer Wednesday, which negated the need for the employment appeal hearing that was scheduled for 6 p.m. today. That meeting was canceled this morning.
Fowler said the details of the severance agreement will be made public once the council is able meet.
“Since council has not met and voted to officially accept the offer, we’ve decided not to get into the details yet,” he said. “But it should come up at the next meeting and the details will be available then.”
The council’s next regular meeting is at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 7 at City Hall.
The City Council voted 3-1 on Jan. 3 to declare Melton's contract as city manager null and void, citing a conflict with the city’s current charter that states a city manager may be hired for an “indefinite” term. Melton’s contract had a “definite” term.
As for plans for Melton’s replacement, Fowler said the council may appoint a current department head to serve as acting manager while the position is being advertised, or they may appoint a current department head to fill the position permanently.
Either way, Fowler noted that the next manager will fall under the guidelines of the city’s new charter, the second reading for which will likely also be held during the council’s Feb. 7 meeting before going on to the state Legislature for final approval.
If passed, the new charter will create a “strong mayor/weak manager” form of government for the city and also will set limits to how often one can serve as mayor.