Naples assistant city manager Hunt resigns; Marco police chief is replacement

Marco Island police Chief Roger Reinke hired as replacement

Roger Reinke

Roger Reinke

Roger Reinke

Roger Reinke

Chet Hunt, Naples assistant city manager

Photo by MICHEL FORTIER, Daily News // Buy this photo

Chet Hunt, Naples assistant city manager

Naples Assistant City Manager Chet Hunt is out and another Marco Islander can now call Naples home.

Hunt, 56, submitted his letter of resignation to Naples City Manager Bill Moss on Feb. 27. Hunt has served as Naples’ assistant city manager for about a year, and served as interim city manager before Moss took over the helm at the city in December.

The city won’t be without a second-in-command, though.

Moss said Tuesday he was hiring Marco Island police Chief Roger Reinke as assistant city manager.

“I will miss Chet,” Mayor Bill Barnett said. “Chet was a very good assistant city manager, and I would give him a great recommendation when he wants one. But I understand (Moss’ decision), that’s the way these things go.”

According to his resignation letter, Hunt is leaving because of budget constraints.

“Given the budget constraints that are being placed on the city as result of the recent property tax legislation, I realize that there will be a need to modify the city’s budget to reflect the change in revenues and know that there will be difficult decisions ahead,” Hunt wrote.

Hunt said he plans to continue being involved in community redevelopment, where he got his start, by opening his own consulting firm.

“(The budget) certainly weighs into this. When you wanted to do something, that’s obviously a consideration,” Hunt said Tuesday. “It kind of helped me firm up my desire to go back to the private sector.”

Hunt didn’t specify when his last day would be, but said he planned to work with Moss to ease the transition.

He won’t have long to ease the transition; Reinke is schedule to start in Naples about May 5.

Councilman Bill Willkomm said Moss told him about three weeks ago he planned to hire Reinke as Naples assistant city manager. Willkomm said the conversation came before Hunt submitted his resignation, and that the decision to hire Reinke would save the city money.

“Those hiring decisions are his, and I hold him responsible,” Councilman Gary Price said of Moss’ decision.

Hunt makes about $113,000 a year as assistant city manager, while Reinke will make about $115,000 a year.

In addition to his assistant city manager duties, Reinke also will absorb the responsibilities of the city’s labor relations manager. The position has been vacant since December, when former Labor Relations Manager Tom Motes resigned. Moss has estimated that the city will save $130,000 a year by hiring Reinke to fill both positions.

Reinke took over the police chief’s position on Marco Island in 2001. Prior to coming to Marco Island, Reinke served as the assistant chief of Milwaukee’s police department.

From September 2006 to June, Reinke was a finalist for police chief jobs in seven cities. In a Jan. 17 interview, Reinke said he was keeping all options open when it came to his career.

“I want to work another 15 years, and 15 years is a long time, so I don’t want to shut any doors on other career paths,” Reinke said at the time.

Marco Island City Councilman Bill Trotter said he first heard last week that Reinke may be leaving.

“I think Roger’s done a very good job and I wish him the best in the future,” Trotter said.

Trotter said Reinke’s decision to move into city administration came as a surprise, since the majority of his previous job prospects have been in police work.

Barnett said Reinke poses no threat to current Naples police Chief Victor Morales.

“I don’t think Victor will have anything to worry about,” Barnett said.

Reinke will be able to put his experience negotiating contracts to good use as part of his labor relations job. As labor relations manager, Reinke will, among other things, be responsible for all labor negotiations in the city. Naples has seven collective bargaining units, Moss said.

In December, Reinke negotiated a new three-year contract with Marco’s police union. As police chief, he oversaw 36 employees and managed a $3.97 million budget.

Marco Island Police Union President Andrew Delgado was surprised when he heard Reinke was leaving.

“God bless him. I hope he has a good career,” Delgado said. “I’m disappointed. I wish I would have heard it from him first.”

Staff writers Liam Dillon and Leslie Williams contributed to this report.

© 2008 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Comments » 7

ba10da69 writes:

Wow I lost the bet,I said 1 year,wow

talktome writes:

Best of luck to you Roger. I wish you well. Loyalty goes a long way. Right choice by Bill Moss.

MSullivan writes:

Too bad it wasn't Joel

dc5799 writes:

Joel will be next.

OldMarcoMan writes:

Get a life Sullivan and DC.
Roger is a great guy and he was being wasted on this biter little Island.
Why don't YOU move to Naples, you could be irrelevant in a bigger town.

lauralbi1 writes:

I just need to say that be careful what you wish for. We operate with 50% of the City Staff than any other City of the same size and population with a utility (Venice, Naples and others).
Things are great here, and could always use improvement.
Ed Issler

oldmarcoguy writes:

The best statement of the entire article is, “I’m disappointed. I wish I would have heard it from him first.” Good for you Delgado, I know what you mean, nothing like practicing what you preach Reinke.

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