As Midway struggles to straighten out its finances until the city can draw down funds owed to it by the state for its new fire station, council members on Thursday, September 5th reached out to Dot Inman-Johnson to take the city’s reins.
Four hours after working its way through regular city business, outgoing mayor Jerrod Holton, whose resignation was effective immediately after the meeting due to heavy travel in his new job, introduced Inman Johnson to the few people in the audience who didn’t already know her.
“I’m saddened that I won’t get to work with interim city manager Dot Inman-Johnson,” he said. “I’ve enjoyed my experience with this council. You all have contributed to my experience. This season (of my life) has come to an end. But don’t give up on Midway!”
Attorney Henry Hunter said procedurally, mayor pro tem David Knight automatically becomes mayor and the council should elect a new mayor pro tem.
The council then would search for someone within the district that Holton had served to fill the open seat. If unable to find someone from the same district, then they may go out to another district to appoint someone for the rest of Holton‘s term, Hunter said.
Councilwoman Delores Madison was elected mayor pro tem.
Inman-Johnson will serve as interim city manager under deferred compensation and may apply for the full-time position when the city has funds available.
She recently retired from the Capital Area Community Action Agency.
Former Midway mayor Eugene Lamb told the board that it was a very wise decision to hire Inman-Johnson. “She’s a very respected person who knows what’s needed and where we need to go. Please let Ms. Johnson do her job. Don’t micromanage her while she’s working to help the citizens of Midway,” said Lamb.
Dot Inman-Johnson began work on Friday, September 6th after being unanimously voted to be hired.
Earlier in the meeting, then-mayor pro tem David Knight said he’d like to utilize financial consultant Bill Bogan more until Midway had a city manager in place. Knight made a motion to have Bogan continue working with city staff to get through the current budget crunch. That motion passed 6-1 with councilman Chuck Willis voting no.
After Inman-Johnson was appointed, she said she will meet with staff and consultants on the city’s new fiscal year budget.
Acting manager Angelia Goldwire said she had met with county administrator Robert Presnell about the possibility of his growth management department helping Midway through its difficulties and said he was receptive to the idea. Goldwire will draft a proposal to give to him that he can take to the county commission for discussion.
The city held its first public hearing on the 2013-2014 budget at the meeting. The 2013-2014 millage rate was approved on first reading at 4.0795, which will give the city the same operating capital as its 2012-2013 rate of 4.0763. The city will give final say-so on the rate at its October meeting.