By Dan Moffett
A month into the new year and a new decade, Briny Breezes has a new administrative staff in place at Town Hall.
Council members approved resolutions appointing William Thrasher as town manager and Sandi DuBose as deputy clerk during the Jan. 23 town meeting.
Thrasher is no stranger to Brinyites, having worked for 21 years as manager of neighboring Gulf Stream. He retired three years ago, but was lured back by Briny’s part-time position that will enable him to split time between homes in Boynton Beach and Andrews, North Carolina.
“It’s very feasible in this day and age with electronics to work remotely,” Thrasher said of his plan to work from North Carolina during the summer months when the town’s business slows. “I feel I can accomplish the task.”
Thrasher told the council during a December interview that “management concepts seem to be universal” and what made him successful for two decades in Gulf Stream is likely to be effective in Briny.
“I’ll keep my eye out for projects but I believe there’ll be a time period where I’ll have to learn this community better,” he said of his short-term approach. “I’ve got to get to know the residents and how they might think and analyze things.”
A little over a year after leaving Gulf Stream, Thrasher served a three-month stint as Highland Beach’s interim town manager while commissioners searched for a permanent replacement to Valerie Oakes. Before coming to Gulf Stream, Thrasher worked as financial director of Pahokee, and his experience with budgets is another reason council members approved his hiring. His annual salary is $37,500.
DuBose, a Delray Beach resident, takes over as Briny’s part-time clerk after working four years as clerk for the city of West Palm Beach golf advisory committee. She also spent nine years as an administrative assistant for the city of Lake Worth.
A native of Austin, Texas, DuBose was the council’s choice from dozens of applicants who applied through indeed.com. The clerk job pays $22 an hour.
The two Briny positions came open last fall when Manager Dale Sugerman and Clerk Maya Coffield announced they were resigning, citing a growing workload and inadequate pay.
In other business, the council voted unanimously to hire consultant Erin Deady to help the town win approval of its comprehensive plan amendments from the state.
Town Attorney Keith Davis said state officials want changes to the plan that reflect Briny’s vulnerability to flooding and assess the potential consequences of rising seas. Davis said failure to comply would put the town at risk of losing grant money that could go toward flood mitigation.
Davis recommended Deady, a certified planner and attorney with an environmental law practice in Delray Beach, to “shepherd the plan through” the state requirements. The council approved paying Deady up to $6,000 for the work.