Council declines Manning’s appointment to housing authority

 

Bay City Council declined the reappointment of Danyal Manning to the Bay City Housing Authority during the Thursday, Sept. 12 council meeting.

Manning’s reappointment to the BCHA was being sought after her term had finished this month.

“We would like to thank Danyal Manning for her service as provided as a commissioner on the housing authority board,” said Bay City Mayor Robert Nelson. “We have a new administration here and we would like to go in a new direction. We appreciate everything she has done but we are not going to re-certify her at this time.”

Council also took no action on the reappointments of Ronnie Reeves and Vidala Rodas-Leal to the board as commissioners at this time. Reeves’ term is not up until October and Rodas-Leal in March of 2020.

Council did accept the appointment of Thomas Battle as a resident commissioner to the BCHA.

Nelson pointed out that Reeves and Rodas-Leal’s terms are not up yet “and we will discuss those terms when they come due.”

Manning’s departure ends a long, sometimes strained, relationship with the BCHA and the city of Bay City.

In December of 2018, Manning reportedly had agreed to resign her post with the commission with then-Bay City Mayor Mark Bricker.

“As a result of the hearing, there were a lot of factors that were discussed and she has agreed to resign her post by Friday or I will remove her from the position,” Bricker said.

One week later after Manning failed to tender her resignation from the board, Bricker attempted to remove both Manning and Reeves from the board on grounds of “inefficiency.”

“As a result of the hearing, there were a lot of factors that were discussed and she has agreed to resign her post by Friday or I will remove her from the position,” Bricker said.

In a letter obtained from the city, it stated “after much consideration and hearing objections, I do hereby removed Danyal Manning from the Bay City Housing Authority. The cause for removal is due to inefficiency and behaviors that inhibited the interest and effectiveness of long term and daily operations of the Bay City Housing Authority.”

But soon after that attempted removal from office, Manning, Reeves and Rodas-Leal filed a lawsuit against Bricker and the city of Bay City to remain on the BCHA board.

In a court ruling Feb. 7, visiting District Judge Randy Clapp ruled in favor of the trio and granted a temporary injunction for them to stay on the board.

Clapp ruled that Bricker has the right to remove and appoint commissioners to the authority but he also needs to gain ratification of the move from city council.

“Danyal Manning, Ronny Reeves and Vidala Leal Rodas were all appointed to the Bay City Housing Authority and their appointments were approved city council,” Clapp said. “These three commissioners have the right to run the Bay City Housing Authority as long as their appointments remain in effect.

“(Bricker) and city council have no authority to tell them how to run the authority,” Clapp said.

The tension between the city and BCHA has not been an issue since Bricker’s departure from the mayor’s office.

LaWanda Davis, executive director for the Bay City Housing Authority, spoke up for the reappointments to the board for the trio.

“When I first came to the Bay City Housing Authority it was under a lot of negative light,” said LaWanda Davis, executive director for the BCHA. “With the direction of our commissioners, we came up with five directives to change the image of the housing authority.

“We are currently working on the South Park homes and was considered depreciated by HUD when I took over,” Davis said. “We are now taking repairs on roofing repairs and are looking for that job to start in October and plan on opening up our community room as a computer room for students to use.

“This board has a vision that should reach its pinnacle in about a year or so,” Davis said.

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