By Richmond Mayor Tom Butt (this article first appeared in the mayor’s e-forum newsletter),
At the end of today, Aug. 31, 2018, City Manager Bill Lindsay will quietly slip out of City Hall, ending 13 years of running Richmond and widely credited with significant improvements in how Richmond residents perceive our city.
The table below extracts data from the biannual Community Surveys that began in 2007, two years after Lindsay came to Richmond.
I have been in contact with Carlos Martinez, our new city manager, currently vacationing in Spain. He explained that his last official day in East Palo Alto is October 12, and he can start in Richmond any time after that date. However, the East Palo Alto City Council will meet September 4 in closed session to decide if they will appoint the assistant city manager, now acting city manager in Martinez’ absence, as interim city manager until they select a new city manager.
On September 4, the East Palo Alto City Council may decide to allow Martinez to shorten his departure, in which case, he could join Richmond earlier than October 12, possibly even before the City Council meets on September 11.
Meanwhile, to provide continuity for city management until the September 11th City Council meeting, Bill Lindsay has appointed Richard Mitchell as the acting city manager. As the senior department manager at City Hall, Mitchell has previously served in this capacity during Lindsay’s vacations and at other times when he is not in the office. Mitchell is quite familiar with that role. He will be in a position to manage the agenda process, execute contracts and other documents, follow up on service requests, and perform other tasks as needed.
The next meeting of the Richmond City Council is September 11, and by that time we should know the schedule of Carlos Martinez. The City Council meeting will include a closed session item for the appointment of an interim city manager, if necessary, until Carlos Martinez starts work in Richmond. At most, an interim city manager would be required for only five weeks, and perhaps not at all.