Daily Reports




Gil McDougal is out as Deputy City Manager in the city of gold… at least for the time being

City Attorney David Mecklin said city council Monday voted unanimously to “rescind the approval” of the selection of McDougal as deputy city manager. Council voted McDougal to the job by a vote of 3 to 2, one month ago.

Many locals found the selection of McDougal to be controversial for a number of reasons, including because a clause in the city charter suggested that a former elected official was ineligible to work for the city for one full year after he leaves office. McDougal lost the mayoral election to Leslie McPherson in December of 2023, before leaving office at the end of the year.

Last week, Mayor McPherson called on McDougal to step down and called on city council to remove him from the Deputy City Manager position.

Mecklin said, now the process to hire a deputy city manager will revert back for the city to follow its usual personnel policies- accepting resumes, reviewing qualifications, interviewing candidates; and, once that process has been completed, “If the city manager decides to recommend someone for the position, then it will go back to council for approval.”

Meanwhile, Mecklin says the city continues to watch for the State Attorney General’s Office to clarify the clause that some point as a reason that McDougal is not qualified to hold the Deputy City Manager job at this time.

That clause is found on page 26 of the (26 page) Villa Rica charter – which was adopted in February of 2018… under appendix a: code of ethics & prohibited practices, section 5 – ineligibility of elected officials: It states “…no former mayor and no former councilmember shall hold any compensated appointed office in the city until one year after the expiration of the term for which he/ she was elected.”

Depending on the timing of when and if – City Manager Tom Barber decides to ask city council to vote on a new deputy city manager; and, when and/or if – the Attorney General determines the “ineligibility clause” does not pertain to McDougal, Barber could present McDougal to city council again as the best option for the job. And, council could select him for that position.

Also Monday, city council decided that an outside investigation into alleged malfeasance against current mayor Leslie McPherson will not continue. That investigation was initiated with a unanimous vote from city council during McDougal’s final meeting as mayor in 2023.

The probe was to determine whether McPherson violated the city charter in sharing documents that were discussed in a previous executive session.

In voting to end the investigation Monday, council instead voted to accept a report Mecklin had prepared in lieu.  Details of that report will be filed in the minutes which will terminate any further action in the matter, according to Mecklin.




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