Singer, who has been with Goleta since 2005, will start work June 2 if the city manager employment agreement is approved at the Poway council's April 15 evening meeting.
He beat out 64 candidates in a recruitment process, and Poway Mayor Don Higginson said in a statement issued Wednesday that Singer “will be a wonderful addition to city staff and the Poway community.”
Singer’s Poway contract includes a salary of $219,950, a boost over his current salary of $202,284.
The Goleta City Council will discuss a replacement process at Tuesday’s meeting, probably partly in open session and closed session, according to City Attorney Tim Giles.
Council members will need to pick a process to find and appoint a permanent replacement for Singer if Poway finalizes his contract, Giles said. They can’t take action until Singer is officially leaving, he noted.
Singer had planned to tell Goleta staff and the City Council on Thursday, when Poway’s agenda comes out, but the day-early release left him scrambling to let people know.
He and his wife are excited about the move to Poway — which isn’t official until the council approves his contract Tuesday night — and it’s a step up for his career, said Singer, who turned 50 last week.
“I’ve helped Goleta mature in so many different ways," he said. "We’re in such great fiscal shape, our city’s been noted as one of the safest cities in California and the country, the economic development programs are well underway and our employees are top-notch.”
He compared his time in Goleta to raising a child, and his eight years with the city have guided the new municipality through some of its formative years. He said it was exciting to witness Goleta’s growth and to leave it in a more stable position at 12 years old.
Singer is only the second permanent city manager in the city’s history, Goleta Mayor Michael Bennett noted.
“He’s played a big part in his almost nine years with us,” he said.
Singer hired the city’s first-ever finance officer and helped keep basic services going even in difficult times, Bennett said. The council will talk about the possibility of an interim appointment on Tuesday in closed session. Poway won’t be meeting until the evening.
The Goleta City Council had multiple days of meetings last year about Singer's annual performance review and were reportedly hammering out details of his employment contract in closed session. The new contract changed the term from three years to one and adjusted the severance benefits provision.
If Goleta didn’t renew the agreement when the manager is willing to extend it, the city has to pay three months of base salary as severance.
The new contract process “absolutely” had something to do with Singer’s decision to move on, Singer said.
Before coming to Goleta, Singer had 14 years of local government experience, including his time as city manager for Ojai in Ventura County.