MADEIRA BEACH — City Manager W.D. Higginbotham Jr. resigned suddenly Tuesday evening, saying he cannot work with the new City Commission that will take office following the March 8 election.
"I decided it was time to have an amicable parting of the ways," Higginbotham said after the commission meeting. "The incoming commission desires to get more involved in day-to-day operations. I respect their right to do that, but it is not the way I want to work."
Higginbotham's resignation is effective March 4, just days before a new mayor and commissioner take office.
Current Commissioner Steve Kochick and Planning Board member Travis Palladeno are vying to become mayor. Meanwhile, Planning Board member Robin Vander Velde is unopposed for the District 4 seat now filled by Kochick.
Current Commissioner Nancy Oakley, who is unopposed, will automatically serve another term.
Palladeno, Vander Velde and Oakley, as well as sitting Commissioner Carol Reynolds, have all indicated they want to take more control over management of the city.
Higginbotham said he does not have another job yet, but is "not ready to retire."