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Miami commission holds special meeting after city manager resigns

Emilio Gonzalez says commission meetings have devolved into circuses

MIAMI – The City of Miami Commission is holding a special meeting at City Hall Friday morning to discuss the controversy surrounding the resignation of City Manager Emilio Gonzalez.

Commissioners discussed the accusations leveled against the city manager, Emilio Gonzalez, by one of their colleagues and may discuss who should take his job while they search for a permanent replacement.

Gonzalez submitted a letter of resignation Thursday, saying the city commission meetings have devolved into a circus.

"It is too bad for our residents. They expect better, they deserve better,” he said.

Gonzalez stepped down amid tension with some city commissioners, like Joe Carollo, who accused Gonzalez of doctoring documents to secure a work permit on his home and using his authority to fast track the process.

"Do you think an individual that I presented the facts, the hard facts at that meeting that has refused to answer them, is the kind of individual you would want in your organization?” Carollo asked.

Gonzalez was expected to respond to those allegations at a meeting last week, but commissioners fought over the order of the agenda and then abruptly adjourned.

"People that know Commissioner Carollo know Commissioner Carollo, and people that know me, know me," Gonzalez said.

In the letter, Gonzalez touted low property taxes, low crime rates and stable city finances among the high points of his administration.

“I’m grateful for his service in helping elevate our city as an innovative, world-class destination,” Miami Mayor Francis Suarez said.

Gonzalez said another reason for his resignation is that he wants to spend more time with his family, especially his wife who is very ill.

During Friday’s special meeting, Carollo asked the building director to speak under oath to clarify what happened with Gonzalez’s work permit, but that didn’t happen.

“My position is that the investigation is unlawful," Suarez said. "It was the subject of a mayor veto which was not overturned properly at the last city commission meeting.”


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