Public Works Director Ismael Carrillo is retiring after nearly 37 years with the City of Devine, leaving a leadership gap in the midst of a $9.9 million water line replacement project that already has the City scrambling to hire contract workers for help.
The Devine City Council accepted Carrillo’s retirement at the end of the year during the Special meeting last Tuesday, November 24.
Mayor Cory Thompson thanked Carrillo for his years of service to the City, and for his willingness to continue to help the City after retiring.
“I’m sure they’ll be calling you on all sorts of matters as the transition happens over the next month or so,” Thompson said.
Rob Flores, Superintendent of Public Works, is next in command. Flores is also the City’s Emergency Management Coordinator.
In the Regular meeting on Nov. 17, Carrillo informed Council that Public Works was getting behind on projects due to City employees supervising contractor Gonzalez De La Garza’s work on the water line project. Carrillo asked to transfer Code Compliance officer Ruben Chapa to Public Works, as well as for the City to hire four to five contract laborers.
Chapa was previously the Superintendent of the Devine Golf Course, and Carrillo said he has experience with water and irrigation.
During the Nov. 24 meeting, Council unanimously granted Interim City Administrator Dora Rodriguez the authority to hire an unspecified number of independent contractors to assist Public Works during the waterline project, report to Council as needed, and amend the budget for salaries.
As contractors, the workers will not receive City benefits.
Additionally, Council unanimously approved allowing overtime pay rates for all Public Work employees who sign up for overtime repairs, regardless of whether the employee has worked a 40-hour week, and to amend the budget.
Council also unanimously approved allowing Carrillo to cash in no more than 90 hours of annual leave at his regular pay rate, and to allow Flores to do the same for no more than 130 hours of annual leave at his regular pay rate, and to amend the budget to reflect both.
By Marly Davis