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Miami-Dade Finance Director Out After Gimenez’s Take-Over

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MIAMI (CBS4)- Miami-Dade’s Finance Director Carter Hammer has resigned after a resignation request from the county’s new mayor Carlos Gimenez, who has been moving decisively to reshape management at County Hall since taking office July 1.

Hammer, who was named to the $221,375-a-year post in January 2009 by the previous mayor, Carlos Alvarez, couldn’t be reached for comment. His last day was July 29, according to CBS4 news partner the Miami Herald. 

“The mayor and I met with him and asked for his resignation,’’ said Clerk of the Courts Harvey Ruvin, who with the mayor jointly appoints the finance director under county rules.

Hammer’s exit following Gimenez’s take-over came as no surprise to County Hall insiders, the Herald reported. Hammer had clashed often with Gimenez at county commission meetings when Gimenez, then a commissioner, subjected him to withering questioning about the county’s finances.

The mayor expects to name a new finance director, spokeswoman Suzy Trutie said Friday.

The move comes as Ed Marquez starts Monday as one of five deputy mayors — a newly created position similar to assistant county manager — with the finance department as part of his portfolio, according to the Herald. 

Marquez, a former city manager for the city of Miami and former director of the county’s finance department, left his job as senior vice president at the Miami office of investment banking firm First Southwest Co. to join Gimenez’s top team.

The finance director manages the county’s municipal bond program, oversees cash management and accounting, and runs its multibillion dollar investment portfolio.

Among other recent management changes, the mayor on Friday named Henry Sori as director of the Government Information Center. The GIC oversees the county’s TV, advertising and marketing, 311 call center and Web portal operations.

Sori, a Miami-Dade veteran, was most recently special assistant to the county manager with direct responsibility for emergency management services, juvenile services, the medical examiner, and animal services. Previously, he was an assistant director of public works. He succeeds Judy Zito, who previously resigned.

On Thursday, Gimenez picked Alex Munoz to succeed Dr. Sara Pizano as head of the county’s animal services department. Munoz, another County Hall veteran, had been an assistant county manager whose responsibilities included overseeing animal services and most recently served as deputy director of the parks and recreation department.

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald contributed material for this report)

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