YOU will have a chance to meet the potential City Manager of Key West

From a City Manager search to a parade celebrating Civil War Heritage, the City of Key West is busy, no matter the season.

Key West Mayor Teri Johnston joined Good Morning Keys on KeysTalk 96.9/102.5FM this morning to talk about what’s been going on in the city.

The City Manager selection process will begin soon.

Johnston said, “It’s one of the most important positions that we hire and it certainly is a process that we want to be very transparent for our public.”

The out of town candidates will be brought into the city on February 12. On February 13 from 4 to 7 p.m. there will be an open meet and greet at the Waterfront Brewery.

All of the five candidates will be there and the public is welcome to ask questions.

A workforce housing Working Group has been formed to see what can be done with housing.

Johnston said, “The legislation in Tallahassee is bringing forth some pretty significant legislation in order to address affordable workforce housing and to be able to live close to where you work.”

It’s called Live Local.

Johnston said, “We are analyzing that proposed legislation right now. There’s some really good things. There are some things that probably don’t apply to us because we’re so restricted in our area of critical state concern, in our hurricane evacuation time. So some of the solutions that may be on the forefront for somebody like Miami or Fort Lauderdale certainly are a little bit difficult for us.”

The Working Group was one of the requests from the workshops concerning the short term rental issue. One of the requests from the workshop is that members of the Working Group consist of people in the industry.

So there are a wide variety of people in that Working Group.

Johnston said, “This is a nationwide issue now, so people are working on it. People are finding solutions and I feel very encouraged that we have a group of people thinking outside the box, that are working every, single week.”

A workshop for home ownership is coming up on February 22 and will be in conjunction with Habitat for Humanity.

Johnston said, “We’ve got the 3.2 project, which we’ve got 28 home ownership opportunities, but those home ownership opportunities don’t do us any good if our young families are not ready to apply, if they don’t have their credit scores in shape, if they don’t understand the implications and responsibilities of home ownership. For the past year we have been trying to prepare our families and individuals to get ready for home ownership so that they can qualify for the opportunities that we’re going to be bringing forward.”

The home ownership course is limited to about 20 people, so mark your calendars and get ready to apply. More information will be forthcoming soon.

Johnston said, “We want to keep our people in Key West. We want to keep our young families in Key West.”

A workshop with a solar co-op will be held at 5:30 p.m. on January 31 in City Hall.

Johnston said, “Right now we generate less than two percent of our electricity via solar and you know how many sunshine filled days that we have here in Key West. It’s particularly important because of the recent spike in electricity costs, particularly here in Key West.”

The workshop is free to the public.

Civil War Heritage week will begin with a parade at 4 p.m. on Friday, February 3rd. It starts with a memorial service at the historic Clinton Square at the foot of Whitehead Street. It will take walk past the Mel Fisher Museum, down a block of Front to Duval, then up to Southard Street where it will continue until reaching Fort Zachary Taylor.