During his first year on the job, City Manager Michael Bornstein has solved problems, boosted employee morale and improved the image of the city, residents and commissioners said Tuesday.
Bornstein, 50, received a positive evaluation from city commissioners Tuesday after a little more than a year on the job.
“He couldn’t have been a better choice on so many different levels,” Mayor Pam Triolo said, noting Bornstein’s positive attitude while addressing Lake Worth’s long list of problems.
Commissioner John Szerdi thanked Bornstein for taking extra time to meet with residents and for being “genuinely interested in promoting the potential of our city.”
“He has more than stepped up and done everything we needed him to do and be,” Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell said.
Commissioner Christopher McVoy said he still hears too many complaints from residents about the city’s customer service, but said is is seeing some improvements.
“We are working hard to improve some of those things,” McVoy said. “Let’s keep on working.”
The commission did not change Bornstein’s salary. He earns $135,000 annually — $15,000 a year less than his predecessor Susan Stanton — plus a $6,000 annual car allowance, the use of a cellphone for city business, 10 percent of his salary as a retirement contribution and up to $1,000 for life insurance.
Bornstein said coming to Lake Worth was an incredible challenge but said he is happy in his job and pleased with his staff.
“I have completely jumped without a net into this community,” Bornstein said. “I will stay here as long as I am useful.”
As manager, Bornstein spent much of his first year addressing the “disincentives” to living and investing in Lake Worth, including high electric rates, convoluted land-development regulations and a perception of instability at city hall.
In the coming year, Bornstein said he plans to focus on code enforcement with an emphasis on cracking down on absentee landlords. He said he’s working to find money to pay for $63 million worth of needed road, drainage and utility improvements and on organizational changes that should make city government function better.