When Wesley Corbitt returns to Rincon City Hall on Monday, he’ll get to take the interim tag off his title.
Rincon City Council members named Corbitt the next city manager, approving his hire to the permanent position at their March 11 meeting. Corbitt wasn’t on hand to receive congratulations from the council members — he was on vacation.
Mayor Ken Lee said there was no better way to see how Corbitt could do the job than his performance over the last year as the interim city manager. Corbitt, who had been the city’s finance director, was named the interim city manager in December 2011.
"A year is a pretty significant period of time," Lee said. "During that time, we got to see Wesley in probably two of our most difficult things, the service delivery agreement that had to be negotiated and now our current (local option sales tax) negotiations. Those are two of the most important challenges and difficult things a city manager might do."
Lee said Corbitt has come through in "an exemplary fashion" in steering the city’s position on service delivery and LOST negotiations. The LOST negotiations may be settled later this month before Atlantic Judicial Circuit Judge Ronnie Rahn.
Though Corbitt’s background isfinance and accounting, Lee said the council also took a close look at how he handled people as interim city manager.
"There’s so many positives I can see about Wesley in the last year," Lee said.
There also have been other projects, such as the widening of Fort Howard Road, that have been completed during Corbitt’s tenure as interim city manager. Lee praised Corbitt for being able to handle issues and topics that go beyond number-crunching.
"He has learned, and he has utilized the people available to him," the mayor said. "Nobody expects you to be an expert on everything."
The other finalists for the position were Baldwin city administrator Karen Degges and Savannah director of economic development MarRonde A. Lumpkin-Lotson. The search for a replacement to Mike Phillips, who parted ways with the city in August 2011, was suspended until last June. There were more than 60 applicants for the city manager job.
"We had some outstanding candidates," Lee said.