ROY — The city isn’t in a great hurry to replace Community and Economic Development Director Tony Reynolds.
It’s not that the position isn’t important, but leaders want the right person and fit for the job. Reynolds left his post in February to take a position with Ogden. He had worked for the city twice, most recently for the past nine years.
“We are definitely going to hire someone, but we don’t want it to be a quick thing. We want to make sure what direction we want to go,” Mayor Joe Ritchie said.
Right now City Manager Chris Davis and Ritchie are assuming Reynolds’ duties.
“He left a big hole. He was the best guy in the state,” Ritchie said.
The mayor doesn’t blame him for taking the job with Ogden, because it was better for his career, and he was quick to say there are absolutely no hard feelings between Reynolds and city officials. Ritchie did say, though, that his departure was unexpected and it will be difficult to fill the spot.
Reynolds’ position had been busy of late because the city is trying to revitalize 1900 West, a source of frequent complaints from residents and business owners. Both Ritchie and Davis said efforts to improve that area are still ongoing, no matter who is doing the economic development director’s job.
Davis said City Planner Jared Hall also is sharing some of Reynolds’ duties.
Davis said Reynolds’ position was a critical function within the city, and the management of the Redevelopment Agency is a big job. Reynolds helped tremendously with the transition, Davis said, but the city doesn’t plan to slow down efforts to revitalize and improve the city.
“It absolutely can’t be,” Ritchie said of development slowing down in the city. “It needs to be No.1.”
Both Ritchie and Davis are proud of the strides being made in the business district in the former Iomega buildings on both the west and east sides of 1900 West and 4000 South. The empty spaces are filling up rapidly on both sides with businesses ranging from banking to education institutions, and even some restaurants.
Some things can’t be done by the city, Ritchie said, because of property owned by developers who aren’t developing anything in those spots right now. The city is in contact with all the property owners and developers in the area, though, and knows the status on the empty buildings. Ritchie said:
“We try to be as supportive as we can.”