Mayor Dwight Jones says he was looking for three things when it came to nominating a CAO. He wanted someone with experience in a larger city. Check (Atlanta, Houston, D.C.)
He wanted someone from a city with accomplishments he’s striving for in Richmond. Check (Waterfront projects, developing the warehouse district)
He wanted someone who could not just build a downtown, but who could build neighborhoods. Check (President of Austin Revitalization Authority)
Byron Marshall appears to have all the qualifications Mayor Jones was looking for in a candidate. But when news broke he was a finalist, information began surfacing from newspaper articles from his prior cities. Tonight, Marshall addressed all the questions. And he did so, frankly and publicly with the media AND at the City Council meeting.
As for his degree? Marshall says he was awarded a B.A. in History in 1997. He says he has 24 hours of the 40 hours required for a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Syracuse University. Marshall says, “Was the paperwork sloppy? Yes. Was I trying to fool anyone? No.”
As for his reasons for leaving his Atlanta job? It was reported Marshall resigned in Atlanta after it was discovered he was also holding a job with Austin. Marshall says he was consulting for another city at the end of his tenure and it was known by his boss and not hidden in any way. He says an election was approaching and the second job became a campaign issue.
And as for the audit currently underway at his agency? Marshall says it is performance based and not financial. He says, “There’s been no determination of any impropriety nor has there been any suggestion that there has been.”
City Council will hold a special meeting next Wednesday. Five votes are needed to confirm the nomination.