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INDIAN RIVER SHORES - The Town of Indian River Shores has reached an agreement with Joe Griffin, 73, to become the town’s new City Manager. Mr. Griffin, the former Sebastian City Manager, will start his employment on Feb. 11.

The Town Manager is a chartered position that reports to the Town Council. Mr. Griffin will be responsible for the day-to-day operations of the town. The Town Manager also guides the department heads for Public Safety, Building/Planning and Zoning, Maintenance, Accounting and the Postal Center.

Outgoing Town Manager Robert Stabe has been in the position since 2013. Mr. Stabe has been employed by the town since 1990, first as a firefighter, paramedic and police officer before becoming the Chief of Public Safety in 2012.

Mr. Stabe gave his notice in mid-2018, but agreed to stay on until his replacement was in place. The town offered the position to Tim Day of Melbourne Beach, but then withdrew the offer after a prior work suspension was discovered during his background check.

Resuming the search, the town appeared in January ready to offer the position to Mike McNees, the recently fired Melbourne City Manager.

Mr. Griffin, who had moved out of state after retiring from Sebastian, leapfrogged ahead of Mr. McNees by expressing a desire to end his short retirement.

At the Jan. 4 Town Council meeting, as the council seemed poised to hire Mr. McNees, Mayor Thomas Slater revealed that an unsolicited appeal for consideration was received from Mr. Griffin. According to Mayor Slater, Mr. Griffin and his wife did not “take” to retirement, and wanted to come back to work. Mr. Griffin’s appeal indicated that he would not ask for relocation expenses. He argued that his leadership as a Marine fighter pilot and then a commercial would enable him to do what’s right, whether other people like it or not.

The Mayor said he was very impressed with Mr. Griffin’s resume.

The Mayor added that a letter of support for Mr. Griffin had been received from Sebastian Councilman Albert Iovino.

At the Jan 24 Town Council meeting, the council selected Mr. Griffin as the new Town Manager. Mayor Slater offered his gratitude to Mr. Stabe for his service to the town, and a standing ovation was given in honor of Mr. Stabe.

At the Jan. 31 Town Council meeting, the council approved Joe Griffin’s employment agreement, with a start date of Feb. 11.

In 2018, the population of the Town of Indian River Shores increased from 3,901 to 4,208, an addition of 307 individuals since 2010.

Indian River County Reporter

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