Fayetteville City Council to assess City Manager and City Attorney on Wednesday

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On Wednesday, the Fayetteville City Council will evaluate City Manager Doug Hewett and City Attorney Karen McDonald at a special meeting.

The meeting will follow the briefing on the agenda which is scheduled to start at 5:00 p.m. The purpose of the meeting, according to a city statement, is to discuss personnel matters regarding an evaluation of Hewett and McDonald.

The meeting will be held behind closed doors, the statement said.

Hewett has served as city manager since April 2016. Previously, he was acting director of permits and inspections for Fayetteville. He has nearly 20 years of local government experience in North Carolina, Virginia and Florida, the city said.

Hewett could not immediately be reached for comment late Tuesday afternoon.

Hewett just presented a recommended budget of $249.17 million for the 2022-23 fiscal year that City Council unanimously approved on June 14. The budget maintains the property tax rate at 49.95 cents per $100 of assessment, and the residential solid waste fee remains at $225 per family residential unit. Also, there is no change to the $6 per month storm water fee.

“There’s a list of things he’s done,” Mayor Mitch Colvin said Tuesday. “We will address that tomorrow.”

A former Halifax County and City of Wilmington Public Information Officer, Hewett first came to Fayetteville in May 2004 as Director of Management Services. That role, the city said on its website, focused on strategic planning and public relations for the city.
Hewett was promoted to deputy city manager in April 2007, a position he held until January 2012. That’s when he became city manager in Florida.

McDonald has served as the Fayetteville City Attorney since August 2002. She grew up in Fayetteville and graduated from Pine Forest High School.

She is responsible for providing legal advice and guidance to the city council and city employees regarding matters that arise in the course and within the scope of their employment, the website says.

“McDonald is a member of several legal and civic organizations and is licensed to practice law in the states of North Carolina, Georgia and Arkansas,” the city said.

She was the city’s first assistant district attorney. At this time, his duties included enforcing city code violations.

From 1998 to 2000, McDonald worked as an attorney for the Cumberland County District Attorney’s Office. After a two-year stint in Little Rock, Arkansas, she returned to Fayetteville, where she was appointed city attorney by the city council.

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