Dear editor, 

Who is in charge of the City Council? Last night at the City Council meeting, the City was dealt the worst blow that has taken place since I have lived in Milton (since 2003). The mayor and his "dream team" fired the long-time City Manager, Brian Watkins. The mayor and this "dream team" are nothing but puppets dancing to the commands from their puppeteers who paid for their political campaigns. They are not for the best for the city but to pay back their political debts. This is not the first time they have demonstrated this. Councilman Snow made the motion late in the meeting after many of the audience had already left (talk about good ole boy politics)! With a tie vote, the mayor made the deciding vote to fire Mr. Watkins. What a shame on the mayor and councilpersons Snow, Lowery, Smith and Powell. This was done because the City Manager refused to fire certain City employees the puppeteers and Smith wanted him to fire. This was the stated reason by Smith at a recent meeting when she made the motion to fire Mr. Watkins and then…she voted against her own motion, which caused it to fail.

Retired Navy Captain Brian Watkins was recently named as Man of The Year for Santa Rosa County. During his tenure, Watkins has guided the City from having to borrow money to pay for costs after Hurricane Ivan to having close to a six-month reserve for operating costs. Many whom have lived in Milton for a long time have said that Mr. Watkins is the best manager the City has ever had. I believe it.

Now the Mayor and his "dream team" have already run off the Public Works Director, fired the City Manager and are in the process to fire the City Attorney. They will now go after the City Planner, City Clerk, Fire Chief and anyone else who will not dance for the puppeteers for whom they dance. 

JIMMY MESSICK

Milton

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