Tuesday, February 23, 2016

How will Austin assess the City Manager?!?

"Do they not go astray who devise evil?
But mercy and truth belong to those who devise good."
Proverbs 14:22

City Manager Marc Ott's performance review begins soon.  The City Manager manages the city bureaucracy in the absence of leadership from council.  Former council candidate Ed English raises some very important questions about Ott's review process:
Austin Deserves an Open Review of the City Manager 
1. Hold the Council discussion with the City Manager on his evaluation in public. There is no legal reason Council cannot do that. At a minimum, if there are some truly confidential issues that need to be discussed, the Council can retire to executive session just for that, and return to the public session.

2. Require the City Manager to complete a written performance evaluation and have Council put it's individual and collective evaluation of his performance in writing. Make it available to the public for comment.

3. The citizens of Austin deserve a chance to review the manager of the city, a city in an affordability crisis. A time certain is guaranteed by a public hearing.

4. Performance metrics should be tied to the outcomes laid out in Imagine Austin.

5. A major responsibility of the City Manager is to inform the council on major projects. Have the City Manager explain his performance on projects that have affected Austin's affordability like How has he had the City Council's back on protecting Austin's affordability related to major expenditures on projects like Biomass ($2.3B), Water Treatment Plant #4 ($1B), Waller Creek, Seaholm, and just recently, Pilot Knob $100M and and a host of high tech company recruitment incentives whose high paid employees have driven up housing costs dramatically.

6. The city is a $3B per-year corporation. Most corporations in America, this size or larger, routinely evaluate their chief executive officer with a 360-review. The same can be said for many public institutions including our own UT-Austin and Huston-Tillotson University. The City Manager should be reviewed by those who work under him - anonymously. Allows them to comment on his performance, just like HT and UT students do of their faculty.

7. What does the City Manager do to enhance the city's relationship with other government entities and other civic organizations?

8. Is the City Manager providing information to the council requested of him in a timely manner for making decisions?

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