Columns

Miami's Five Worst City and County Managers Who Prove Merrett Stierheim Wrong

Over the weekend, Miami Commissioner

Francis Suarez revealed he is entertaining the idea of eliminating

the city manager's position in favor of the strong mayor form of

government. His proposal, which would require voter approval to

change the city charter, makes sense because it gives residents one

top elected official to hold accountable. Let's not forget voters

gave Carlos Alvarez strong mayor powers over Miami-Dade County

government and then recalled him when he failed to deliver.



According to the Miami Herald, ultimate

bureaucrat Merrett Stierheim, who served two stints as county manager

and was briefly interim city manager in 1996, is no fan of strong

mayors: "You may elect a mayor with a bad moral compass, and you're

stuck with him. A manager generally runs for office every day."

With all due respect to Stierheim -- who helped the city emerge from insolvency in the mid-1990s and whose

career was largely untainted by scandal -- there have been several

top administrators who lacked a moral compass and respect for

taxpayers. Here's Banana Republican's list of the worst city and

county managers:

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Francisco Alvarado was born in Nicaragua and grew up in Miami, giving him unique insight into the Magic City and all its dark corners. An investigative reporter with a knack for uncovering corruption, Alvarado made his bones as a staff writer at Miami New Times and remains in dogged pursuit of the next juicy story.