Mount Dora interim city manager Kim Leinbach announced his resignation effective August 26.
“I have enjoyed working with the Mayor and City Council, staff and residents,” Leinbach wrote in his July 7 letter addressed the mayor and city council. “Mount Dora is indeed a special place. You are blessed with a great staff and I truly wish the best to my successor.”
“It has been a great pleasure working with Kim Leinbach as he has been a wonderful Interim City Manager for the City of Mount Dora,” mayor Girone said in a statement to the Citizen. “We wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors and genuinely thank him for his hard work and expertise during his time here, especially as we’ve been working through budget season.
“Our hope is to have a City Manager in line before Mr. Leinbach departs on August 26,” Girone said. “The City Manager search is going well and interviews are set to be scheduled for July 29 & 30, 2016. From there, the Council will narrow down the top 6 candidates and make a decision on the final choices.”
Leinbach, who is semi-retired, previously served as city manager for Temple Terrace for 14 years as well as special assistant to the county administrator for Hillsborough County. He was unanimously selected interim city manager by Mount Dora council last March to replace outgoing city manager Vincent Pastue.
Like his predecessor, Leinbach appeared to struggle with council-staff relationships and the amount of direction he was receiving in his job as the City’s administrative CEO. There was at least one clash with city attorney Lonnie Groot, to the extent that at the June 21 council meeting Leinbach asked city leaders for “role clarification” of the city’s administrative and legal function.
Leinbach’s announcement to resign before a permanent city manager has been named came as somewhat of a surprise to some council members. Additionally, Leinbach will not be in city hall most Fridays through the remainder of his tenure with the city – though he will be available by telephone. Leinbach’s pay will be adjusted according the hours he is on the job in Mount Dora. Girone has stated that he would have liked Leinbach to stay in the role.
If scheduled interviews with candidates and council’s deliberations proceed as anticipated, the new city manager should be on board by the end of August (mid-budget process) when Leinbach departs.
David Cohea, Writer (firstname.lastname@example.org)