The re­place­ment

The Covington News - - Opinion -

Cov­ing­ton is go­ing to miss City Man­ager Steve Hor­ton, who has guided the city through good times and bad for the past seven years.

But be­cause of Hor­ton’s long-term plan­ning — the city has known he was go­ing to re­tire for more than a year — Cov­ing­ton has the chance to take its time in find­ing a re­place­ment, in­clud­ing hir­ing an out­side firm to head up the re­place­ment search.

The Cov­ing­ton City Coun­cil has cho­sen The Mercer Group, an At­lanta firm, to help find the next top ad­min­is­tra­tor for the city. We ap­plaud the coun­cil for reach­ing out for help, be­cause find­ing a new chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer for a $120 mil­lion op­er­a­tion will not be an easy task.

As for Hor­ton, the city will miss his 34 years of ded­i­cated ser­vice to his home­town. Hor­ton plans to re­tire Dec. 31 af­ter ful­fill­ing the prom­ise to stay on that he made to fairly new Mayor Ron­nie John­ston, who asked for help in nav­i­gat­ing the wa­ters of city gov­ern­ment.

We hope the mayor has learned a lot, be­cause he’ll need to be part of the team help­ing a new city man­ager get ac­cli­mated to a community and keep­ing the vi­sion of the city clear in the midst of change.

Re­plac­ing Hor­ton won’t be easy, but with his in­put and the ex­per­tise of trained pro­fes­sion­als, we hope it’s fairly smooth.

We wish city lead­er­ship and The Mercer Group ev­ery suc­cess in find­ing the right per­son to lead our city, and we wish for peace­ful re­main­ing months for Hor­ton and an en­joy­able re­tire­ment to fol­low.

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