As the City Council searches for a new city manager to succeed Nassau County Comptroller-elect Jack Schnirman, the council is expected on Tuesday to appoint Police Commissioner Mike Tangney acting city manager until a permanent replacement is hired.
Schnirman, who was appointed city manager in 2012, will begin his new job on Jan. 1 following his Nov. 7 election win.
Council Vice President Anthony Eramo told the Herald earlier this month that while the council is hoping to fill the position soon, members did not anticipate hiring Schnirman’s successor by Jan. 1. He added that the council would be required, under the city charter, to appoint an acting city manager if it does not hire someone by then.
According to the city, in 2014, Schnirman designated Tangney to serve as acting city manager if the city manager was temporarily absent.
The council is expected to formally appoint Tangney at its Dec. 19 meeting. If approved, Tangney, a lifelong Long Beach resident and 40-year member of the Police Department, will take on the role of acting city manager on Jan. 1.
“Michael Tangney has served our city with great distinction for many decades and was instrumental in protecting our residents in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy,” Eramo said in a news release. “I am extremely confident in his ability to lead while we continue our thorough and thoughtful search and selection process to hire a permanent, full-time city manager.”
If appointed, Tangney would be authorized to hold more than one office. Tangney told the Herald that he would not receive an additional salary or stipends while serving as acting city manager, and would continue to oversee the Police Department.
According to See Through NY, Tangney earned $230,000 as police commissioner in 2017. Tangney — who was among those rumored to succeed Schnirman — said that he would only serve in the position until the council found a permanent replacement, and said he would not apply for the job.
“I am looking forward to working with the City Council in order to serve Long Beach residents as the City transitions,” Tangney said in a news release. “I will not be seeking or applying for a permanent appointment to the position. Throughout my career, I have focused on improving public safety, making cost-effective budget decisions, and working with members of community to deliver more effective services. These principles will continue to guide me as acting city manager, until the Council completes its search.”
Tangney said it was too early to say how long he would serve in the role.
“It all depends on the search,” he said. “Myself and the executive team will vet the candidates until we get down to a manageable number, and bring them before the City Council for an interview.”
Council members could not immediately be reached for comment on Friday.
According to the city, as police commissioner, "Tangney’s efforts resulted in crime being significantly reduced over past six years. While improving public safety, he aggressively pursued funding options to reduce the burden on taxpayers. Under his leadership, the Police Department has applied for and received grants to install ShotSpotter, train the entire force on Narcan administration, create safer routes to school, and purchase equipment and vehicles."
Earlier this month, the city posted a job ad for the city manager position on Indeed and other websites after Eramo, along with council members Scott Mandel, Anissa Moore and Chumi Diamond, all Democrats, and Councilman-elect John Bendo, an independent, worked on its language.
According to the ad, candidates should have a minimum of five years’ experience in a senior management position in a government; and have experience in budget preparation, planning and development, employee supervision, economic development and labor and contract negotiation. Like Schnirman, the new city manager would also be required to live in Long Beach.
Last year, Schnirman signed his third two-year contract with the city — it was to run through March 2018 — which makes him the longest-tenured city manager in Long Beach since Eaton, who served for 25 years. The latest contract pays Schnirman an annual salary of $173,871.
Eramo told Newsday that the council had not yet discussed the city manager salary, but he said it would reflect the new hire’s experience. The city is also seeking a new comptroller with the departure of acting Comptroller Shari James.
“The three immediate challenges are finding a city manager, finding a comptroller and preparing the budget,” Tangney said. “Those are the January challenges.”
The Herald will update this story.