Residency requirement altered for key staff positions 

Published 7:31 pm Monday, November 29, 2021

Those hired for key staff positions in the city of Suffolk will have two years, instead of one, to move to the city following City Council approval at its Nov. 17 meeting.

Council voted 7-1 to amend the city’s ordinance on residency requirements as part of its consent agenda, in which several items are voted simultaneously.

Vice Mayor Leroy Bennett, after the council had voted to leave the consent agenda as is, moved to revise it to have the ordinance on residency requirements removed and voted on separately.

However, council voted 5-3 against Bennett’s motion. Shelley Butler-Barlow, who seconded the motion, and Mayor Mike Duman supported the vice mayor’s motion.

The council then moved to adopt the consent agenda, with only Bennett voting no.

As part of the newly adopted ordinance, it changes the start time newly hired people have to become city residents from the employment date to the date of hire.

The city manager still has authority to waive the residency requirement, if necessary, for any positions except those appointed or ratified by City Council that have such a requirement.

All council appointees of the city, including the city manager, city attorney, city clerk and real estate assessor, along with any deputy city managers, the deputy city attorney, chief of staff and department directors, fall under the new requirement.