On Wednesday Aug. 30, the Moab City Council convened in a special meeting to discuss the future of the city manager position. During the meeting, Interim City Manager David Everitt, who had planned to leave the city when his contract ended in February 2018, announced that he would be available to continue in the position permanently.
The announcement solved a dilemma for the council, which found the city facing down a law that lame duck councils cannot hire a city manager. The law meant the city would either have to make a quick hire before the election or a leave a gap between Everitt and the next permanent city manager, said councilmember Kyle Bailey.
However, that changed when Everitt announced his willingness to stay on as city manager indefinitely.
“I will be available to continue in this role in a permanent fashion so long as the arrangement we have right now or something similar to it would be acceptable to the governing body,” said Everitt, who lives in Salt Lake City and currently works remotely one to two days a week, often to attend meetings in Salt Lake City.
Everitt said he was prepared to make a commitment with a “multi-year expectation.”
“It sure seems like developing a strong succession plan would be a priority and this would give us all a chance to do that ... and if there was a successor in place that was ready to go and I need to go earlier then ... my commitment to you would be that it wouldn’t happen without one of those two things happening, either a couple years passing or someone who was really ready to go,” Everitt said.
The city council discussed how long would be appropriate to extend Everitt’s contract.
“We talked about extending [Everitt’s contract] another 18 months which takes us into the new budget year and also lets the new councilpeople get a chance to comment [and] see if they like him or if they want to keep him. So I think it’s the best of both worlds,” Bailey said.
Mayor Dave Sakrison and councilmember Tawny Knuteson-Boyd expressed appreciation for the job that Everitt has done in his role.
“The stability that you bring and the experience that you bring and from what I see, just the comfort level of the staff that you bring, those are all extremely valuable and no matter who [else] we hired, all of those would be unknown and given some of our past history, I think that those are really important issues,” Knuteson-Boyd said, encouraging the council to extend Everitt’s contract.
“I think you’ve done a good job,” Sakrison said. “I think you stabilized the city government. I think the staff is receptive to your presence and the way you’re managing so you know, I wouldn’t have any qualms saying a year and a half and let’s work out the details.”
Everitt agreed to work on a revised contract for approval by the city council.