Update: Aug. 16, 5:01 p.m.
During Tuesday’s City Council meeting, former city council members spoke out in defense of City Manager Jared Miller.
On Tuesday, city officials held a meeting in executive session to discuss Miller’s employment.
That executive session was put on hold for Tuesday’s regular meeting to take place.
During public comment, former city council members Dr. Eddy Sauer and Howard Smith both spoke about Miller’s record.
“And because of Mr. Miller’s efforts, we build the ballpark on time and within budget. This set the tone for the next six years of significant growth in the city, and it set the tone for me too, said Sauer, former Amarillo City Council Member Place 3.
“Jared Miller needs to stay as our City Manager because experience is what we need,” said Smith, former Amarillo City Council Member Place 4.
Mayor Cole Stanley said the executive session, which they were not able to complete before the regular meeting, will continue Wednesday, according to the Texas Open Meeting Act Handbook, that is permissible.
Officials with the city of Amarillo said the executive session starts at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday.
City officials said votes are not taken during a work session or executive session.
Texas Open Meeting Act Handbook states “Section 551.041 does not require a governmental body that recesses an open meeting to the following regular business day to post notice of the continued meeting if the action is taken in good faith and not to circumvent this chapter. If an open meeting is continued to the following regular business day and, on that following day, the governmental body continues the meeting to another day, the governmental body must give written notice as required by this subchapter of the meeting continued to that other day.”
AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – According to an agenda posted by the City of Amarillo, city council members will convene in an executive session on Tuesday to discuss the employment of Amarillo City Manager Jared Miller.
The posted agenda said that the council will “receive reports on or discuss” the “appointment, employment, evaluation, reassignment, duties, discipline, or dismissal of a public officer or employee,” with Miller listed as the city employee in question.
As previously reported on MyHighPlains.com, Miller was named city manager by former Amarillo Mayor Paul Harpole and the city council in 2017, amid Miller’s time as the city manager of San Marcos.
Tuesday’s executive session comes after Miller’s contract with Amarillo was updated in April by the previous mayor, Ginger Nelson, and the previous city council. At the time, Miller’s contract was updated to include a salary change from $294,000 to $313,000, based on the CPI for 2022 at 6.57%, an increase in vacation time from 16 days to 25 days to match what a city employee with more than 20 years of experience gets, and other adjustments in other allowances, such as auto, cell phone, and sick days.
However, at the time, some Amarillo residents who attended the city council meeting in April were critical of the contract negotiations due to the timing coming in a month before election day. Then-mayor Nelson said that the timing was due to meetings and councilmember absences delaying Miller’s regular February evaluations until April.
Then-councilmember, current Amarillo Mayor Cole Stanley, was the one member who voted to reject Miller’s contract.
As previously noted on MyHighPlains.com, Miller’s contract had no term, and the city manager position is still hired at the will of the city council. The contract can be amended at any time with the agreement of the city council and city manager.
The contract can also be terminated at any time without cause, with the agreement of four city council members, and terminated with cause with the agreement of three members.
This is a developing story. MyHighPlains.com will update this article as new information becomes available.
Download the KAMR Local 4 News app on the App Store or Google Play for updates on the go.
Sign up for MyHighPlains.com email updates to see top stories, every day.
Check with MyHighPlains.com to see the latest updates for local news, weather, and events.