Consider This: New year, new council, new challenges for Savannah

Published: Jan. 6, 2020 at 8:06 PM EST
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) -Welcome to the new year. 2020 should be a year of clarity and vision for all of us. We’re already witnessing some of that change here in the City of Savannah.

Last week, Van Johnson was sworn in as Savannah’s 67th Mayor, promising to run a city of inclusion, that will find a seat for the table for all.

Mayor Johnson, in his previous 16 years of service to our city, has done great things. He’ll need to rely on his experience and coalition building to continue to do so.

As he was sworn in, so was a new city council, with the emphasis on new. Seven of the eight seats were filled with newcomers to city politics.

Consider This: The first, and probably most important decision Mayor Johnson and the city council will have to make is hiring a new City Manager.

For the past several months, Pat Monahan has been temporarily serving in that role and has made it very clear that he does not want the job permanently.

But finding the right person is not so easy.

Whoever gets the job will be the fifth city manager in the past nine years, a trend that absolutely needs to be reversed.

The challenge will be finding the person who’s equally qualified and willing to learn the political dynamics of our city. The latter being the shortcoming of previous City Manager Rob Hernandez.

So while the clock is ticking, let’s hope our new leadership is measured in the process and is able to bring the absolute right person to the city manager table.

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