I grew up in Sunnyside, graduated from Sunnyside, lived in Seattle and other large cities working for large companies in management, and recently returned after many years away. Never have I seen a responsible company (city council) not give an employee (Mr. Swansen) adequate opportunity to change any PERCEIVED problems, be it communications (which I understand from others he does very well), budgeting a city going in the hole (which he did an excellent job of) or any other problem that would arise without a review of the problems and give the employee a chance to correct the issues after a few reviews.
But to have a few city council persons decide to fire a city manager without this process is ludicrous at best.
To add to this lunacy, the same city council replaces Mr. Swansen with someone involved in a lawsuit against the city....putting this person in charge of his own financial destiny. These FACTS were known by city council. Only two of the six city council members who had a chance to vote on this issue have shown their ability to govern a city.
But wait! It gets better. The person they put into place to run the city is not qualified so let's hire a couple of consultants to make sure that he does well...it won't cost the city much. Right? Let's see...consultants at, what, $175 an hour? Not just one, but two. Now let's add the six months severance pay we have to pay Mr. Swansen. Let us not forget the potential bona fide wrongful termination lawsuit for the firing of the city manager.
I am sure that is why the city attorney resigned, to protest the lunacy of the city council's actions from a legal point of view.
I find it difficult to believe Sunnyside residents want to be represented in this way. The actions of some city council persons display their ineptitude, and with Mr. Bridges at the helm, the ship will surely sink.
What this city really needs is four city council members to resign and HOPE that Mr. Swansen will decide to stay on as city manager. He is the ONLY hope for Sunnyside.
/s/ Janis Westbrook, Sunnyside