Pensacola Mayor Ashton Hayward announced Thursday that City Administrator Colleen Castille has resigned effective September 3. Her departure has triggered a number of staff changes at the top of city government.
So far, the only explanation from Hayward is in a written statement that Castille is leaving to “pursue other opportunities.” In her own written statement, Castille says she made a one year commitment to serve and fulfilled it.
The Pensacola City Council is expected to make a final decision Thursday evening, on a financial package to bring ST Aerospace – and at least 300 jobs -- to land adjacent to Pensacola International Airport.
City officials held a town hall meeting Tuesday night at the Vickery Center to explain the project and get feedback. Issues such as noise, traffic and environmental concerns were addressed by representatives from the city, the airport, and Bill Haffner -- Vice President of Operations for ST’s Mobile plant.
The City of Pensacola has rescinded its claim to back royalties and interest, from two restaurants that are on city-leased property downtown.
City officials backed off their claims that Collier Merrill and his firm, Great Southern Restaurants owed more than five million dollars in default lease payments over the past 13 years involving the Fish House and Atlas Oyster Bar.
Talks to resolve the situation began on Monday. Merrill’s attorney Bruce Partington met with members of the private law firm Beggs and Lane, who represented the city, instead of City Attorney Jim Messer.
Pensacola businessmen Ray Russenberger and Collier Merrill will meet with city officials Monday afternoon, on allegations they owe past-due sales royalties and interest on revenues from the Fish House and Atlas Oyster Bar restaurants in downtown Pensacola. At issue is the ownership of the building, not of the restaurants themselves, on a tract of city land called “Pitt Slip Marina.” Ray Russenberger leased the property in 1987, then granted a sub-lease in 2000 to Collier Merrill and his partners – who formed Great Southern Restaurants.