NEW PORT RICHEY — Two weeks after the city's human resources and finance directors were fired, the City Council approved a plan hatched by interim City Manager Susan Dillinger to combine the positions.
Last week the council voted 4-1 to allow Dillinger to not only consolidate the two director positions but also create an economic development director job.
Dillinger told the council the move was needed to "streamline redundancies and reduce costs" associated with the finance and human resources departments. Dillinger said the city will not only save on salary by consolidating the positions, but hiring an economic development director will also shave $25,000 off a $65,000 contract the city has with the Pasco Economic Development Council for similar services.
Only Deputy Mayor Bill Phillips voted against the plan, saying he needed more time to review the idea and wanted to focus on bringing in a permanent city manager to make such decisions.
"I see no rush to judgment here," he said.
Dillinger has kept it confidential why she fired former Finance Director Doug Haag and Human Resources Director Lindy Thomas. Dillinger has said based on advice from the city's attorney she cannot tell the council why she fired them, according to Mayor Bob Consalvo. Haag previously told the Times that Dillinger did not tell him why he was fired either.