On Wednesday, the Sun Sentinel first reported that the sticking point was the commission’s insistence on cutting three positions from the budget, including the assistant city manager’s. The commission also balked at Baker’s only reducing his assistant’s $110,000.00 salary by $6,000.00.
In a failed negotiation attempt in which Baker offered to stay on the job, he insisted that in order to continue, he would need to have those three positions restored.
There was even more drama on the dais when Baker’s offer came up for a vote. The tally was 2-2 when Vice Mayor Eileen Rathery pulled a Phyllis Smith-style stunt and walked off the dais in order to avoid being the deciding voting.
The mayor, who is only permitted to vote in case of a tie vote, “put his head down to his hand and let out an exasperated sigh.” In the end, Mayor Russell Barrington decided not to restore the three positions.
It’s now anyone’s guess whether or not Susan Gooding-Liburd will stay on as Financial Services Director with her longtime crony out of the picture.
Gooding-Liburd, a highly paid performer in Kelvin Baker’s Traveling Circus, has been by Baker’s side since before he was fired as inarguably the worst city manager in the history of North Miami Beach. He eventually landed a gig at the City of Opa-locka, bringing Gooding-Liburd with him. Three years later, they both took off for the slightly greener pastures of Lauderdale Lakes.
The Sun Sentinel updated its article after Kelvin Baker officially resigned at a special meeting convened on Friday night.
“Commissioner Gloria Lewis’ motion to accept the resignation immediately passed on a 3-2 vote, reflecting the continuing division on the commission.”
The commission then adjourned, but not before Ms. Lewis unceremoniously directed the Chief of Police to take Kelvin’s keys away.
Hopefully, it won’t be in North Miami.