It's official. After a six month search and some discussion about his compensation package, the City of Simi Valley (California) city council unanimously approved hiring Janesville's city manager, Eric Levitt, during their Monday evening council meeting. He is expected to start May 16.
VC Star Excerpt:
Eric Levitt, the chief executive of Janesville, Wis., was hired Monday night as the city manager of Simi Valley at an annual base salary of $200,000.
Besides the beautiful year-around weather of sunny southern California, Simi also has one other feature that Levitt never had in Janesville - a mayor.
Here's a little tip-off to how badly Levitt apparently wanted out.
VC Star Excerpt:
Levitt’s contract has no set length. He will serve at the discretion of the council.
Wow. A contract without a time frame. But I can't blame him. With a mayor in Simi Valley setting the tone and steering the wheel, Levitt will have a huge undue burden lifted off his administrative shoulders. Particularly so with the ongoing poisonous political environment everyone has to deal with in Wisconsin since the election of Scott Walker. With those burdens gone, Levitt should be able to focus entirely on municipal utilities, contracts and administrative duties and serve his new employers extremely well. It took a boatload of confidence on Levitt's part to accept that contract.
As one of very few local bloggers completely independent of the Bliss establishment media apparatus, I'm comfortable saying I've always considered Levitt a level-headed and capable administrator. In that capacity, he will be missed.
But for good or bad, his departure won't change anything regarding the direction Janesville has been headed in for the past 90 years. As I've repeatedly stated over and over again, Janesville never had any true leadership, at least not the kind of leadership that speaks for the community and is held accountable directly to the people. Janesville of course has no mayor.
We can however once again bet that the political phantoms haunting the city of Janesville will maintain their status quo stranglehold with their overblown pursuit for the next city administrator and start this ridiculous cycle all over again.
So all-in-all, nothing has changed.