Jim Drumm is feeling the same pressure his predecessor Steve Spina did for many years as the chief administrator for Zephyrhills: keeping his job as city manager.
Drumm, who was hired by the city in 2011, is facing some tough questions by a couple city council members who recently expressed concern about renewing his contract. And that could be just enough to force Drumm out.
Zephyrhills selected Drumm after an exhaustive search. At the time, Drumm had just left a similar position in High Springs, a city of 5,300. He resigned before the council there had a chance to terminate him in what published reports at the time called “philosophical differences” with the city council there.
There seems to be philosophical differences in Zephyrhills as well, with both Lance Smith and Ken Burgess both saying they won’t approve a new contract for Drumm citing, among other things, communication issues. Later, Zephyrhills city attorney Joe Poblick determined it would indeed take four of the five councilman to approve a contract for Drumm to continue in his position.
The city council meets Monday night beginning at 6, and Drumm’s future is on the agenda. However, no decision is expected to be reached at this meeting, that is if the council moves forward with a proposed workshop to discuss Drumm’s performance.
Spina retired from government work in 2011 soon after Drumm took over. While he worked on a variety of projects, including streetscaping downtown, the creation of the one-way road pairs parallel to Gall Boulevard, and a variety of other projects, it seemed he struggled to find appreciation from the council as well. However, in the end, Spina was able to depart on his own schedule and on his own terms after 15 years.