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City Manager's Message - May 2021

Dear Indio Neighbors,

They say there is nothing permanent except change.

For the City of Indio, we are embracing a significant change as we face the end of one era of leadership, and turn our focus to the beginning of a new era of leadership. For some that might sound like an embroidered version of reality, but for city staff it is an honest account of the current transition. As many of you already know, I am talking about the departure of City Manager Mark Scott and the welcoming of Indio’s next City Manager, Bryan Montgomery.

Both of these leaders have professional lineages of the elite. If city management was an Olympic sport, they both would be gold medalists. They leave the cities they work for better than they find them, and exemplify what it means to be a public servant. Both Mark and Bryan are the kind of leaders every city needs. Both possess moral and ethical standards, which are indomitable to the constant barrage of requests, proposals, and glitches that can redirect a city’s progress away from the greater good. I am by no means discounting the power and responsibility of the City Council, but a city manager is the lightning rod between that power and the ground we walk on.

As Mark reluctantly hangs up his city management cleats, we reflect on how well he played the game. However, knowing all-too-well, Mark will always be at the ready as the city’s pinch hitter. Being a big time Dodger’s fan, I suspect Mark would appreciate the baseball analogy and want to be remembered for the grand slams he achieved in Beverly Hill, Culver City, Fresno, Burbank, Spartanburg, San Bernardino, and now Indio. Mark has most definitely been a heavy hitter. Here are some of Mark's most notable homeruns with the City of Indio:

Entered into an Exclusive Negotiating Agreement with the Haagen Company to revitalize, re-tenant, and expand the Indio Fashion Mall.
Successfully eliminated neighborhood canvassing by the Riverside County Department of Animal Services.
Adopted the Indio General Plan 2040 on September 2019.
Adopted the Indio Multi-Modal Hub Feasibility Study on February 5, 2020.
Adopted the Indio Downtown Specific Plan on April 15, 2020.
Adopted the Indio Transformative Climate Communities Plan on January 20, 2021.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, kept all City Staff employed while working with City Council and Staff to provide $645K in grants to small, local businesses.
Implemented a new Computer-Aided Dispatch/Records Management system at the Indio Police Department.
Implemented a sponsorship program for police candidates to the academy, as opposed to relying on pre-service and laterals in order to fill our vacancies.
Moved a new Public Safety Campus into the design phase.
Received first Distinguished Budget Presentation Award from the Government Finance Officers Association for preparing a budget document meeting the very highest quality in accordance with the guidelines established by the National Advisory Council on State and Local Budgeting.
Centralized IT Department working together to achieve the goals of the city as a whole.

And now, we welcome Bryan Montgomery, who will soon step up to the plate here in Indio. Bryan will be at bat for the city on May 13, 2021. He is already pointing over the centerfield fence, predicting what he will do for Team Indio. I do not doubt him and neither should you. Bryan, let’s play ball!

Rob Rockwell
Assistant City Manager
rrockwell@indio.org

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