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November 26, 2022

Special meeting set to discuss Watsonville city manager appointment

WATSONVILLE—The Watsonville City Council will hold a special meeting on Wednesday regarding the city’s search for a new chief executive.

The meeting, scheduled for 5:30pm in the City Council Chambers, comes a few days after news broke that current city manager Matt Huffaker had been selected to take the city manager position in Santa Cruz.

At Wednesday’s meeting, the public will have an opportunity to speak on a possible appointment of an interim or long-term replacement before the council moves into its closed session. The council will then report any decisions made in the closed session at the end of the meeting.

The public is not allowed to attend the closed session portion of public meetings. Public bodies hold these sessions to, among other things, discuss private matters such as lawsuits, employees and the purchase or lease of real property.

The news of Huffaker’s departure came as a surprise to many, and the fallout of his move, which if approved by the Santa Cruz City Council next week will be effective on Jan. 3, 2022, has sparked concerns about the process the city will use to find his successor.

“We are taking this replacement seriously and a decision will be made soon with the direction the council will take with this appointment,” Watsonville Mayor Jimmy Dutra said. “I will make sure this process is transparent with the staff and our community.”

Tony Nuñez
Good Times News Editor Tony Nuñez is a longtime member of the Watsonville community who served as Sports Editor of The Pajaronian for five years and three years as Managing Editor. A Watsonville High, Cabrillo College and San Jose State University alumnus, he covers the city, business, housing, entertainment and more.

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