Reporting Joan Murray
Legislative Session Coverage
HOLLYWOOD (CBSMiami) – The fall of Hollywood City manager Doug Hewett finished Friday morning when the Hollywood City Commission voted 6-1 to accept his resignation after three months on the job.
Hewett was arrested Easter Sunday in North Miami for DUI after leaving “Swinging Richards,” a gay strip club in North Miami. Hewett, 41, gave two breath samples at the police station which resulted in blood-alcohol levels of .145 and .139, well above Florida’s legal limit of .08.
During the Commission meeting Friday, there were heated exchanges between Mayor Peter Bober and Commissioner Fran Russo.
Mayor Bober had expressed concern after the arrest became public about Hewett’s perceived lack of transparency with the City Commission regarding the details of the DUI arrest.
Commissioner Russo defended Hewett but Bober, who has been much more critical of Hewett, stood his ground.
“The mayor put on a performance that was outstanding as far as he thought,” said Russo. “I thought it was terrible, he dressed him down like he was dirt under feet.”
Mayor Bober responded, “I’m gonna warn you only one time because you have already violated the rules of the quorum and that is to attack other members of the commission. You are not allowed to attack audience members, you’re not allowed to attack your colleagues so I would just ask you to please tread lightly. We are talking about the current city manager.”
Russo replied, “You are the only one that can grand stand, is that correct?”
He didn’t even acknowledge her comment with a reply and simply gave the floor to another commissioner.
Hewett resigned with a 70-thousand dollar severance package.
“This is a black eye for the city, but we’re moving on,” Mayor Bober said.
Hewett wasn’t in the room at Friday’s commission meeting, but was watching the proceedings on a television in another room.
After accepting the resignation of Hewett, the commission moved forward with a search for a new city manager and until then, naming an interim city manager.
CBS4′s Joan Murray made repeated requests to talk with Hewett, but he declined.
Through city spokesperson Raelin Storey, Hewett gave the following statement.
“I sincerely appreciate having had the opportunity to work with the City of Hollywood Commission, employees and residents. During my short tenure as City Manager, working together we advanced our community in numerous ways. I hope the work we’ve done to expand the number of citizens who participate in the decision making process continues, as well as the progress that’s been made to rebuild trust and unity between the City and its employees. While my time as City Manager did not turn out as I would have hoped or planned, I would like to wish the City, my co-workers, and the many residents who welcomed me continued success.”