Jackson County Economic Development Committee Executive Director Greg Miller was fired from that post Friday for “no cause,” as the board is allowed to do under the terms of his job contract.
His dismissal took effect immediately, with a month’s severance pay going to him according to the terms of his employment agreement. He’d been on board about a year.
Miller said he wasn’t taken completely by surprise when the executive committee presented him with his letter of termination Friday.
“I couldn’t get any of my proposals passed in trying to move forward. I was shot down at every turn. They wouldn’t let me spend money (to do what needed to be done), and they weren’t interested in any of my ideas or proposals,” Miller said shortly after receiving his notice. “I sensed it was coming because there was a lot of animosity toward me not only in the board meetings but in the executive meetings.”
Miller said he hopes the organization can thrive, despite all that.
“I wish them luck and success but it’s going to be very hard to come by, the way the organization is set up. It didn’t work out. They weren’t willing to accept the standard practices for economic development. They wanted to do things only their own way without regard to the common practices.”
Miller said there was little-to-no discussion Friday when he was called into the community room in the building where his office is located. The news of his termination was delivered by Tiffany Garling, John Lawrence and Darwin Gilmore.
Gilmore said Friday afternoon that the executive committee, of which he is the chairman, will be using the next several weeks to “consider all options” moving forward. The executive board will, during that time, be managing (economic development) leads and operations.
“When a lead comes in we’ll make sure they’re properly handled,” Gilmore said, adding that the executive committee will take active roles when warranted. JCEDC might also work on some level with other economic development entities, like Opportunity Florida, during this time of decision-making.
“There may or may not be an advertisement placed looking for a new executive director,” Glimore said. “There’s a lot of different ways to run an organization. We’ll use this as an opportunity to look at potentially a new model. It’s all on the table.”
Gilmore declined to discuss Miller’s termination, but added that the decision “isn’t about a person or a problem.”
Garling, he said, as secretary/treasurer of the organization will be the point person for now as the board considers its options.