PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) - Ken Chandler's position as city manager was under fire Monday evening as council members met to discuss the confusion around the re-hiring of Don Horton.
Horton, former Portsmouth fire chief, resigned in July and left for Richmond. Now, Horton could be back on the city's payroll in a new position.
Portsmouth City Manager Ken Chandler, says Horton was been named the new deputy director of emergency management . Chandler said Horton would be making $98,000 a year in the position that had been vacant.
Councilman Bill Moody told WAVY.com not only did council not know about the hire, the position is not in their budget. Only city council has the power to create a position.
Moody told WAVY.com Horton's new position as well as Chandler's role as city manager were discussed Monday evening during a work session.
WAVY attempted to speak to Chandler both before and after Monday's work session. Chandler refused to make any comments Monday evening.
Chandler's contract with the city states he needs to provide city council with timely and adequate information. Councilman Steve Heretick is calling for Chandler to write a report on what happened with Horton's position, or resign.
"If that doesn't happen then I do think we need to look toward our future relationship with the manager because part of his job is to communicate with us and communicate with the public about the decisions he's making," Heretick said.
During Monday evening's work session, Mayor Kenny Wright told WAVY.com Chandler was asked for more information about the rehiring of Horton with a deadline of 5 p.m. Tuesday.
City council members will be meeting behind closed doors Tuesday evening prior to a city council meeting to discuss Chandler's position as city manager and the decisions made regarding Horton.
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