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Half Moon Bay hires new city manager: Magda Gonzalez coming to coast from East Palo Alto
August 08, 2014, 05:00 AM Daily Journal Staff Report

Magda Gonzalez

After nearly six months of interim management, Half Moon Bay officials announced Thursday it has chosen to hire Magda Gonzalez as its new city manager.

“[Gonzalez] is an amazing individual, she has a strong ethics background, she has a law degree, she has strong support from throughout San Mateo County and we are just so fortunate to bring her on board,” Mayor John Mueller said.

Gonzalez’s official start date will be announced at the Aug. 19 City Council meeting after her contract is formally approved by the council, according to the city.

Gonzalez is currently serving as the city manager of East Palo Alto, however, the council opted not to renew her contract, which expires in October. Gonzalez’s two-year tenure in East Palo Alto ended abruptly and with some controversy as she faced criticism for considering contracting police services with the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office and for issues with the city’s rent stabilization program, according to published reports.

Mueller said the council found the controversy surrounding her leaving unfounded and is confident in its choice.

“It never touched our minds. Naturally we’d done our own investigation and there’s no irregularities in our mind at all. She’s done work with us before and she’s done a lot to help East Palo Alto,” Mueller said.

Since Half Moon Bay’s former city manager Laura Snidemen resigned in February, Mueller said the city has been well served by its Interim City Manager Stuart Schillinger, who came from the city of Brisbane.

Mueller said Gonzalez is familiar to Half Moon Bay as Snidemen contracted Gonzalez in 2012 to help with the city’s budget and strategic plan. Gonzalez’s resume also includes having served as the deputy city manager of Redwood City, according to the city.

“Magda is well-respected in the industry of municipal management and we have the utmost confidence that she’s the right person to lead Half Moon Bay into the future,” Mueller said in a press release. “Magda also is bilingual and understands how to create a spirit of inclusiveness to people of all backgrounds — which is something we are really looking for.”



Tags: mueller, gonzalez, manager, council, according, magda,

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