UPDATED: City Manager Odis Jones to receive $412k severance package, $105k consulting agreement from Hutto

UPDATED: 10:40 a.m.

Hutto City Manager Odis Jones is to receive a $412,000 severance agreement and $105,000 consulting agreement from the city of Hutto, Hutto Public Information Officer Stacy Schmitt confirmed in a phone call with Community Impact Newspaper Nov. 22. The $412,000 severance agreement is broken down as follows:

  • $283,000 base salary

  • $71,000 in benefits

  • $58,000 in paid vacation and sick time


As for his consulting agreement, Schmitt confirmed Jones would receive $15,000 each month for his consulting work, with a total amount of $105,000 promised in the agreement.

"I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve the City of Hutto," Jones said in a statement. "I was hired three years ago to be a change agent, and in that timeframe, I have completed my tasks. I returned financial solvency to city government, acquired a water system for the City that will secure water services to Hutto for the next 100 years, spurred economic growth and built a competent and amazing work force. I now look forward to spending time with my wife and children while I explore other opportunities within a community that has an appreciation for diversity within its leadership."

UPDATED: 9:31 a.m.

Hutto City Manager Odis Jones is to receive a lump sum of his annual salary—listed in 2018 as $275,000, with a 3% annual cost of living increase—as well as unused vacation days, sick time and a year's worth of health care benefits as part of his severance agreement with the city of Hutto. Jones will continue acting as city manager through Dec. 31, 2019. The total package is worth nearly $300,000. His contract called for Jones to return $30,000 to the city if he vacated his contract. That is not part of the agreement reached with the City Council.


As for his consulting agreement with the city, Jones will report to council as project czar of the Perfect Game mixed-use development through July 2020, receiving a monthly payment of $15,000 for his work. His role as project czar, Jones outlined, primarily included overseeing the development's consultants, developer and investors and keeping the project on time for its anticipated Memorial Day 2021 opening.

"I’ll just be working primarily with shepherding and making sure the consultants, the developer, the investors and all the players on that project is dancing to the right tune so it gets to fruition," Jones said.

While Jones said he does not have anything on his radar post-July 2020, he is looking forward to the opportunity to spend more time at home with his family, as well as is considering pursuing consulting work full-time. Jones said while he is a manager by profession, he considers himself a builder first and foremost.

Jones said that during his three-year tenure with the city, Hutto has received more than $4 billion in investment and has helped take the city from being financially insolvent to strong and prosperous. He said he respects and admires council members and residents, adding that he understands high-growth periods can be difficult for community members to adjust to.

"At the end of the day, I’m also humbled and excited about the opportunity to continue working with this council," Jones said. "We locked arms three years ago and decided we’re going to transform a town, and we’ve done that."

ORIGINAL POST

Hutto City Manager Odis Jones has signed a severance package with the city of Hutto, approved with a 5-1 vote by council during its Nov. 21 meeting. Council Member Tanner Rose voted against the severance package agreement, while Council Member Mike Snyder was not present at the meeting.

His final day as acting city manager will be Dec. 31, 2019. As part of his severance agreement, Jones will stay on with the city as a consultant on Hutto’s Perfect Game mixed-use development through July 2020 to keep the project on track for its projected Memorial Day 2021 opening.

Jones joined the city of Hutto on Nov. 17, 2016 following council’s 6-1 approval of his hiring, having previously served in Detroit as the CEO of the city’s public lighting authority. Along with his work in Detroit, Jones worked as the city administrator in Obetz, Ohio and as the executive director of economic and community development for the city of Cincinnati.

City officials renegotiated Jones’ contract with Hutto on July 20, 2018, which listed his base salary as $275,000 with a 3% annual “cost of living” increase. Section 4.2 of his contract, listed as ‘termination by the city,’ outlined that the city would be responsible for paying Jones a severance package equal to his 12-month base salary if he was fired, along with the cost of continuation of group health plan benefits under the city.

Section 4.5 of his contract lists provisions related to an early termination of Jones’ contract on his request. According to the language outlined in his contract, Jones is responsible for paying the city $30,000 as “compensation for damages it will sustain in recruiting and sustaining a City Manager” if he resigns before July 20, 2020.

“I really have enjoyed working with you,” Odis Jones said following council’s vote. “It’s been real. We’ve accomplished a lot, and I look forward to continue working with you on the Perfect Game deal.”
By Kelsey Thompson
Kelsey Thompson is the reporter for Round Rock, Pflugerville and Hutto, where her work focuses on education, city government and community development. Originally from upstate New York, Kelsey relocated to Austin after graduating from Syracuse University in May 2019.


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