In light of the Portsmouth City Council nominating Mr. Sam Sutherland to fulfill the position of interim City Manager, the Daily Times reached out to Mr. Sutherland, Director of Public Utilities, for comment on his temporary appointment to the position. Sutherland provided some information on his current duties for the City as Public Utilities Director, but declined to comment on the prior City Manager, Derek Allen.
“My duties as Public Utilities Director is to oversee the operation of the Water System,” Sutherland said. “Stepping into this position is a huge responsibility and I do not wish to comment on the former City Manager. I am going to remain neutral regarding that subject. My only function is to assist in keeping the City operating until this is resolved.”
When asked whether or not he would be interesting in serving the position long-term, Sutherland stated he had no intentions of doing so.
“I have no interest in fulfilling this position permanently,” Sutherland said.
Sutherland was named Interim City Manager at Saturday’s Special Session meeting of the City Council where a resolution to nominate Sutherland as Interim City Manager passed 4-2 with Kevin W. Johnson and Kevin E. Johnson in the minority. According to City Solicitor, John Haas, an Interim City Manager was appointed to maintain administrative order while Council searches for a replacement for previous City Manager, Derek Allen, after his dismissal from the position on December 18th.
Although Allen was dismissed from the position early last week, many Portsmouth citizens, and two council members, still have reservations regarding his dismissal. A Portsmouth City Council meeting scheduled for 6 p.m on December 28th will be held at the Portsmouth High School’s old gymnasium on Waller Street adjacent to the Trojan Colosseum Football field to discuss the dismissal of Derek Allen.
Reach: Ivy Potter (740)353-3101 Extension 1932