Q: Who reports directly to the city commission? Can commissioners give direction to any staff member?
A: Only the city manager and the city attorney report directly to the commission, city manager Mike Bonfield says. This isn’t his rule; it’s part of St. Pete Beach’s city charter. Section 3.07(b) of the charter deals with this issue. The section, titled “Interference with administration”, makes it clear that “except for the purpose of inquiries and investigations,” commissioners must deal with city staff and officers “solely through the manager.”
The charter goes on to say that commissioners may not give direction to staff in private or publicly. The charter leaves little room for interpretation, stating that, “it is the express intent of this charter... that recommendations for improvement in city government operations by individual commissioners be made to and through the city manager, so that the manager may coordinate efforts of all city departments.”
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