It was announced that less than two years on the job, Alex Meyerhoff resigned his position as the Hemet City Manager following a Hemet City Council closed session meeting Aug. 8.
Hemet City Attorney Eric Vail made the announcement as the city council came out of the closed-door session saying that Hemet Police Chief will be acting city manager until a replacement can be hired. It is the second time Chief Brown has sat on the dais as the city’s acting city manager. The first was in March 2015 after Wally Hill was fired.
His letter was accepted by members of the city council with Mayor Pro Tem Michael Perciful who was in San Francisco, sat in on the closed session through computer instant messaging.
For weeks, the city council has been sitting in closed sessions discussing Meyerhoff’s performance review. It was apparent during the regular council meetings there were differences of opinion between him and councilmembers Karlee Meyer and Perciful.
Vail in announcing Meyerhoff’s letter of resignation said “the parties recognized that it was time for an amicable separation that is mutually desirable and over time have developed significant differences of opinion concerning management directions of the city and these differences have become irreconcilable. The council has accepted Alex Meyerhoff’s resignation.”
Meyerhoff will be on administrative leave until Sept. 7, Vail said. He will be paid two-months’ salary and accrued time off.
“Obviously, the parties have had a good, but trying relationship and they wish the best for Alex and they plan to move forward and that being, Police Chief David Brown will be the acting city manager for the immediate future while the city looks for an interim and hopefully will embark on the process for a permanent city manager,” Vail concluded
Meyerhoff was hired in January 2015 with a starting salary of $200,000 per year on a five year contract. He replaced Hill who was fired. Meyerhoff now is on a long list of former Hemet city managers who have either resigned early or were fired.
Meyerhoff has been successful during his almost 20 months on the job that includes seeing the passage of Measure U a 1 percent sales tax increase that is being designated only for the city’s public safety departments and the first city budget surplus in 11 years and reducing the city’s growing health cost for retiring city employees.
More recently he was criticized for not answering the suggested changes made in a state audit in a timely manner. The audit placed the city on the state controllers list of “at-risk” cities. Measure U will help the city get off the “at risk” status, but more work will have to be done with a new city manager.
Before signing on as the Hemet City Manager Meyerhoff was community development director in Desert Hot Springs, leaving that position in August after one year. He was previously city manager in the Imperial Valley city of Holtville from 2011-14 and worked in Palm Springs, Coachella, Indio and Twentynine Palms.
After the announcement, Mayor Linda Krupa said, “The entire council has the utmost confidence in the city’s executive team to lead our staff through this transition. We will continue to provide excellent service to our community.”