Thursday, May 24, 2018
News Roundup

Mayor Rick Kriseman unveils new organizational chart for city

ST. PETERSBURG — Mayor Rick Kriseman released a new organizational chart on Friday, giving residents a framework of expanded, and in some cases restructured, city operations.

"This chart is a reflection of my priorities and vision and was formed by insightful conversations with many of you," Kriseman wrote in a memo to managers and City Council members.

The most obvious change between Kriseman's administration and the previous one is the additional staff. Before taking office, Kriseman hired eight people, including several for positions that did not exist before.

Many wondered where they would fit in City Hall.

The new chart shows five of those hires — chief of staff Kevin King, communications director Ben Kirby, small business liaison Jessica Eilerman, urban affairs director Nikki Gaskin-Capehart and action center director David Flintom — will be under the mayor's office, which Kriseman wrote in a memo "better reflects our size, influence, and strong mayor form of government."

Kirby said Deputy Mayor Kanika Tomalin's role will be all-encompassing.

"It's not that she is a boss between the mayor and staff," Kirby said. "She's a natural extension of the mayor as it relates to all the departments. She is an extension of the mayor himself. She is going to be everywhere."

The most significant restructuring of the more inner-workings of City Hall is the creation of the Neighborhood Affairs Department, which is headed by new hire Mike Dove, who worked for the city previously.

Dove takes on many duties previously under an umbrella referred to as leisure and community services. Essentially, Kriseman split the two functions, putting things like parks, libraries and golf courses in one area and housing, social services and codes compliance under Dove.

The new city structure also reflects a greater emphasis on marketing and cultural affairs.

Other duties were shifted among administrators. Codes, which had been under City Development Senior Administrator Rick Mussett, is now under Dove.

Some things remained the same.

Public Works Administrator Mike Connors will keep his current duties, but was given an additional title: director of sustainability and green initiatives, which also technically is housed under the mayor's office.

The fire and police departments will continue to report directly to the mayor.

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