When Bill Mathieu was a member of the beach council three years ago he voted to do away with the assistant city manager's position. Now he may become the next assistant city manager.
Mathieu recently left his council seat due to term limits, but now he's ready to take over the position that he previously felt was irrelevant.
"It was about three years ago, and yeah, back then the CRA didn't really exist, and now the CRA once again is gonna be at least a $300 million project, an issue with the council, I can't speak for them ‘cause I'm not on it, but speaking for myself, being out a month, there gets to a point where maybe overanalyzes may be leading to paralysis. It's time to get out the papers and landscaping and start getting some work and seeing some progress."
Mathieu's main focus as assistant city manager would be to oversee the Community Redevelopment Area. The CRA's goal is to improve a plighted area of land. The beach's CRA encompasses a large section of Front Beach Road, including Pier Park.
And that's raised concerns for current council member Ken Nelson. Nelson says Mathieu would have a conflict of interest because he's a licensed real estate broker. Mathieu says he isn't worried about the implications because he's giving up his real estate license.
"You don't need a license to be unethical, I can tell you that, but I'm sure I'm parking my license, not because of the conflict really, but just because I think if you're going to do one job, you should do that one job right and not split time."
Mathieu says taxpayers should start seeing more progress with the CRA, because the city's finally worked out some bond issues.