The Coast News Group

Watt to get $90k to serve as city manager for six months

ENCINITAS — The Encinitas City Council unanimously approved a contract with interim City Manager Larry Watt that will pay him $90,000 over a six-month period.

The council’s action consummates the action it took two weeks ago when it selected Watt, a board member of the Olivenhain Water District and the city’s former public works director, during a special council session on Jan. 9.

The details of Watt’s contract were not released until this week as part of the City Council packet. Watt will earn $86.54 an hour, or no more than $15,000 a month, for six months. As he is already a retiree in the state’s public employee retirement system, Watt’s interim contract does not include benefits and his employment cannot exceed six months.

Watt’s contract also prohibits him from working on matters involving the Olivenhain Water District during work hours as well as any activities involving the San Dieguito Water District due to state conflict-of-interest laws.

The City Council also voted unanimously to select the recruiting firm Avery and Associates to head its search for a permanent city manager. The city’s contract with the firm is $18,000, plus $6,000 for reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses.

If the candidate the city selects resigns within two years, the contract also calls for Avery and Associates to provide recruiting services to the city free of charge, except for expense reimbursement.