Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Council Appoints Reid's Replacement

The Standard Examiner reports this morning that Dave Harmer was formally appointed as Ogden Ciy's new Community and Economic Development Director, at last night's city council meeting. Mr. Harmer arrives on the job with an excellent resume. His academic credentials are quite impressive; and his previous government economic development experience is also a major plus. Most importantly, it's encouraging that he has substantial real-world business experience, too. I'd always believed that the latter quality was something sorely lacking the in background of his predecessor, Stuart Reid.

Mr. Harmer says "his new job will fit well with his professional experience," and I couldn't be more in agreement. It's about time that Ogden City had an actual, real-life businessman heading the department that's charged with the responsibility of promoting business growth in Ogden City, I believe.

I'd long-suspected that Mayor Godfrey's office had an ulterior motive in luring Mr. Harmer from his position as Executive Director for the Utah Department of Community and Economic Development back in February. He was obviously over-qualified to serve as Ogden City's Public Services Director. It seems pretty obvious in hindsight, at least to me, that Mayor Godfrey had been keeping him "on ice" in the PSD job, until Stuart Reid's CEDD position could be made available.

Both the Mayor and Mr. Reid told us that Mr. Reid had moved on to new opportunities quite voluntarily. I say he was probably fired. Otherwise, he wouldn't have walked out with that tidy little five-figure severence package he's taking with him.

Something also tells me we'll see more business reality, and fewer grandiose "pipedreams," now that Mr. Reid is gone -- and now that we have a seasoned business executive like Mr. Harmer at the Ogden Economic Development Department helm.

A tip of the hat to Mayor Godfrey, for the selection of the right man for the job...

And for properly playing his "hole card," which turned out to be an "ace."

Comments?

12 comments:

UTmorMAN said...

I had heard that he actually stayed in Ogden much longer than was origionally anticipated and that it was simply time to move on.

amy wicks said...

I think Dave Harmer is a perfect fit for the job. My impression of him gained in the past six months of his employment with Ogden City is that he has a very strong business background and is level headed, calm and respectful. He served as a great mentor and leader to department heads and others. I look forward to working with him in the future. I wouldn't say it if didn't mean it- he truly is the best person imaginable for the position.

enthused citizen said...

I wonder, did Stuart get a severance package? And if so, doesn't that mean that the Lord Mayor basically had to fire the guy? And if so, does this line up an opponent for our Young Mayor in two years to come?

Ponder, if you will....

OzBoy said...

So this dude has a great resume. The question is what is he supposed to do for Emeral City? Is he going to knuckle down and use all this great education and experience to dig this fine city out of the incredible mess that the big guy on nine and his numb skull team have buried us under?

Or is he going to do just like Reid and so many other central planners did - that is to gin up a whole new slate of outlandish and expensive projects that he can foist on the tax paying public. Is he going to be driven to build his own giant ego monuments to over shadow his predesessors? Are we all going to be further enslaved building even bigger pyramids?

Time will tell. I hope this guy is finally the key to make this complex web of financial intrigue pan out and save the people from the pain of a big ol crash.

Keeping Watch said...

Here, here, Ozboy. By the by, isn't this guy Harmer the same guy Harmer who insulted Carol Conroy Browning when she questioned why her 250K, that she had donated with the agreement that it be earmarked for Animal Education or something along those lines, was used otherwise? And, if memory serves me correct, he pounded another stake through another good meaning citizen's heart when that citizen questioned why his donation was mis-spent (can't remember the specifics, but I'll research and let ya'll know).

Good to have ya aboard, Dave. Enjoy your 108K a year. Plenty of monuments to be built!

Bonnie Lee said...

I think Harmer is the same guy that Governor Huntsman fired about the first chance he had after getting in office?

Is there a pattern here of Ogden being the dumping ground for Salt Lake and Utah State rejects? Patterson, Reid, Harmer for starters. Is Nancy Workman next for Ogden's brain trust? Maybe she could be in charge of ethics for the Ogden team. She might even improve thngs in that department.

If we play our cards right we might also get the mayors brother on the payroll. The first brother just got a juicy high paying position with Patterson on the Salt Lake tax payer's dime. It was rumored that he was not qualified for the job but got it because Patterson was returning a favor to our mayor. You rub my back and I'll rub yours!

Can the Mayor really build a winning team with a bunch of losers from other government agencies?

RudiZink said...

There's far too much knee-jerk cynicism on this board, I believe.

Amy's one of the two members of the council in whom I have trust (Garcia's the other...and Burdett's a close call.) You read what Amy said; and I think she's entirely correct.

Harmer may not be Lee Ioccoca, but he has substantial business experience, and understands risk/reward analysis.

This is a hell of a lot more than you could say about Stuart Reid, whose most long-lasting employment, prior to a few short stints in "public service," was working as a spokesman for the LDS Church.

I'm going to go along with Amy on this.

As for governor Huntsman, the jury's still out for me. There's plenty of evidence that he's just another heartless neocon.

Remember his firing of consumer watchdog Roger Ball, for instance.

As Governor Huntsman's adminstration plays out, being fired may be good for a job resume.

KW said...

My research indicates that Harmer and Gary Kapp had it out with Scott Muir, Director of Eccles Dinosaur Park. Seems many of our city officials have disputes over agreements with doners and directors, and then are quick to dismiss the cause and action, shifting the blame away from themselves. A pattern here seems likely.

RudiZink said...

That's tantalizing information, KW.

Would you care to offer us more info?

KW said...

Standard Examiner, Friday, 8 July, 05

Front page story, that has the same "feel" as the Carol Browning story.

RudiZink said...

I presume you're referring to this story, KW?

Although all the involved parties are obviously keeping mum about the underlying reason for Mr. Muir's sudden departure, it appears from the story that if any dispute existed at all, it was between Mr. Muir himself, and Bob Marquardt's Ogden Dinosaur Park and Museum Foundation, which controls the Dinosaur Park:

"'The park is operated by Ogden, but the foundation has the right to make suggestions regarding the facility, and Muir seems to be uncomfortable with that arrangement,' Kapp said.

'What surprised me is that he was told of that arrangement when he was interviewed for the job,' he said. 'He will be missed.'"

You said "...seems many of our city officials have disputes over agreements with doners and directors, and then are quick to dismiss the cause and action, shifting the blame away from themselves."

I'm having a hard time discerning much similarity between the Dinosaur Park situation and the animal shelter one which would form any kind of "pattern."

Please help us on this. Do you have any additional information to suggest that some unreported dispute between city officials and donors might explain Mr. Muir's sudden decision to resign?

kw said...

Isn't so much the "dispute," Rudi, although I'll tell you this, NEVER have I seen a ONE SIDED coin or a road that runs ONE WAY. My referal is to the attitude of the City and their position that their side is basically without blame, within cause, and is always justified by reason that it was "the other guy" who either brought it on or has "really no justification" regarding the reasoning they quite or became embroiled in dispute. Similar to Godfrey's attitude when one of his pet projects goes upside down and he assumes a dismissive role or just flat minimizes the effects.

Enough on this....time to move on to other things.

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