Lincoln City City Manager David Hawker has announced he’s retiring at the end of the year – depending on the deal he can work out with the city council to allow the council to find a good replacement for him. But he’s willing to stick around another year or maybe a little longer if the search for his replacement takes longer than expected.
In a contract agreement scheduled to go before the city council on Monday, Hawker announces that he intends to retire effective December 31, 2014. But he adds that he would be willing to remain in place for another 18 months depending on how long it takes to recruit his replacement and then assist in his or her transition into the position.
One paragraph in the agreement clearly states that Mr. Hawker’s departure from the city in no way stems from any disagreement with the council or from any discipline aimed at Mr. Hawker. He’s simply retiring and trying to ensure that whoever the council chooses as his replacement will get the full measure of his expertise and knowledge of the city, its people, history and future challenges and opportunities.
Mayor Dick Anderson said that Hawker has done a very professional job for the citizens of Lincoln City and has shown very effective leadership in addressing challenges and suggesting strategies. Mayor Anderson said that Mr. Hawker has helped Lincoln City tackle the very important yet extremely expensive job of replacing and upgrading major sections of the town’s water and sewer system. And there is still much left to do in that area. He also praised Mr. Hawker’s courage, skill and vision in acquiring The Villages to ensure orderly development of those properties at a time when the development community did not have the resources to get the job done themselves. And that Mr. Hawker has successfully navigated the many viewpoints coming to bear on the town’s Vacation Rental Dwelling issue – an issue that is hopefully in the final stages of a long term resolution. The idea is to adopt land use and other regulations that preserves the economic value of VRDs with less of the often mentioned liabilities to the neighborhoods they are a part of.
Mayor Anderson said that he hopes that Mr. Hawker will still find a residual role as a learned advisor and policy resource for Lincoln City – that 15 successful years at the helm as city manager should never be allowed to completely out the door. Former Lincoln City Finance Director Ron Tierney is also one of those valuable contributors to what Lincoln City is and can become because of his continued generosity of his expertise and guidance dealing with complicated financial options that face any vibrant and growing community.