110 W. New York Ave.
DeLand, FL 32720
By Al Everson
posted Dec 23, 2013 - 10:05:31am
Ten months after he became Deltona's acting city manager, and just weeks after he threatened to quit, Dave Denny has won the confidence of the City Commission to continue for another six months.
"I think the city just got the best Christmas present," Deltona City Commissioner Nancy Schleicher said.
Under the agreement adopted by the City Commission Dec. 16, Denny will drop “acting” from his title and become city manager of Deltona for the first half of 2014.
Denny is on track to become the permanent city manager, even though he does not live within Deltona's city limits, as required by the city's charter. The contract between the City Commission and Denny "is not a violation of the charter," City Attorney Becky Vose said.
"There's no charter problem here," she told the City Commission.
A charter-change proposition that would allow the city manager and city attorney to reside outside Deltona may be placed on the city's Nov. 4 general-election ballot.
If the measure is approved by Deltona voters, and if the City Commission continues to find favor with Denny, Denny may be asked to continue as manager without having to move from his home in DeLand.
The six-month contract provides Denny an annual salary of $135,000, and he will be given the use of a city-owned vehicle for travel to and from work.
Denny, who ascended to the city's top administrative post after Faith Miller resigned as city manager in February, won praise from his bosses.
"He is a man of integrity. He is an awesome leader, and I'm proud to work with him," City Commissioner Chris Nabicht said.
"He has been the most nonpolitical person," said Schleicher.
Mayor John Masiarczyk said he has "unquestionable faith” in Denny’s integrity.
Just before Thanksgiving, Denny threatened to resign because of the commission's criticism of the city's enforcement of the sign ordinance, after a business owner was cited for displaying a Toys for Tots banner. Denny defended his decision to enforce the law as it is written, while inviting the commission to change the sign ordinance if they wish.
After Denny annoucned his intention to resign effective Dec. 31, Masiarczyk and other commissioners urged Denny to meet with each of them individually, and after doing so, he softened his stance on exiting.
The only opposition on the City Commission to Denny's continued service came from Commissioner Webster Barnaby.
"I was very pleased with Mr. Denny ... but anyone that works for you and that makes an announcement that they wish to resign is sending a clear message," said Barnaby. "If anyone offers his resignation and you want that person to keep working for you, my answer is no.”
The City Commission voted 6-1 for the contract with Denny. Barnaby was the dissenter, but he later congratulated Denny on winning the favor of the body's majority.
Denny served as deputy city manager before he became acting city manager in February. Earlier, Denny was Deltona's director of public works and general manager of Deltona Water.
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