Our City Manager Has Proven His Worth
In her recent “Reader’s Forum”, Councilmember Pam Tarlow ignores the performance of our city manager over the last year and reminds us he is unqualified because his municipal experience was in the private sector. She originally raised this issue during his confirmation last year. A majority of Councilmembers disagreed and supported his hiring. Councilmember Tarlow now paints this as a violation of our City Charter. I view it as Councilmembers having made a decision they are elected to make.
During the confirmation, Councilmember Tarlow also raised legitimate questions about the process through which Mr. Usry was hired. Her points were noted but a majority of her peers felt circumstances necessitated the prompt action they took. While a departure from the norm, it doesn’t seem to be a Charter issue. It seems more like a bold decision with consequences. Rye’s voters will have the final say.
I met Mr. Usry through serving on the City’s Finance Committee and I have worked closely with him, as I have done over the years with a number of his predecessors. I find him thoughtful, responsive, non-political, and effective. Our City is running smoothly, we made the difficult pivot in response to the pandemic, navigated a tricky budgeting process, and we are systematically tackling a host of long neglected thorny strategic issues such as structured capital planning. Mr. Usry is a vast improvement over his predecessor and the evidence is everywhere for anyone really looking.
During the confirmation, Councilmember Tarlow expressed “fear for the future of our city” if Mr. Usry were confirmed. My concern for the future of the City is that Councilmember Tarlow’s continued badgering might lead us to lose him.
- Jono Peters