By MARTHA McCLAIN
Special to the PRESS
Laguna Vista officials on Tuesday, October 22, named their chief of police as the Town’s new city manager.
Anthony David, who has served as the Laguna Vista Police Department Chief for five years, was the unanimous choice of the Town Council after reviewing nearly 20 applications for the position. The board met in closed session for nearly two hours to discuss their options before returning to open session to vote on their selection, Mayor Susie Houston said.
David fills the position after the Council accepted the resignation of Rolando Vela who served as city manager for the past 10 years. Vela did not indicate in writing his reason for resigning, the mayor said.
The new appointment leaves vacant the position of chief of police in the Town.
“I am not sure at this point how we will work that out,” Houston said.
In his new role, David’s salary was set at $69,000 annually, with benefits.
“He was selected for his leadership abilities,” Houston said.
“He organized the police department into what is now a very well-run department and he knows budgets. The bottom line is that he could step in on Day One and hit the ground running. We don’t have to wait 30 to 90 days for him to get up to speed. He is from Harlingen and was on the Rio Hondo city council for a bit. His first position with the Highway Patrol in the 80s was working this area,” she said.
“We were impressed by his honesty, and he already lives in Laguna Vista…and I believe he has connections with so many people who could help us in the future,” the mayor said.
Candidates for the position came from local, state and out-of-state applicants. “We had a hard time deciding, as there were many qualified people,” she said.
His goals are to continue the projects underway within the Town at this time, supervising the police and fire departments as well as administration, Houston said.