Battle brewing over Penzone appointment. Bare asks Mayor Hayward to reconsider

Mayor Ashton Hayward announced early this week that he was appointing David Penzone as the the city of Pensacola’s representative to the RESTORE Advisory Committee. The well-timed announcement came days after a huge spread in the daily newspaper praising Penzone for his efforts on closing the Police and General Employee pension funds.

This afternoon Councilman Charles Bare sent out an email questioning Penzone’s status with the city and whether he should be disqualified to serve. He also asked that the mayor to reconsider the appointment:

Please find the attached resolution adopted by the Escambia County Commission related to the establishment and composition of the Escambia County Restore Act Advisory Committee. Section 2, number 6 prohibits the city from appointing a contract employee to their seat unless the City of Pensacola is not going to request funding for a project under consideration by the committee.

Mr. Penzone has rendered over $40,000 worth of services over the past year to the city. I am unsure of his current status, but a contract would either disqualify him or prohibit the city from seeking funding for a project under consideration of the committee.

I am asking the mayor to reconsider this appointment. In addition to this apparent conflict, I believe there are excellent candidates who live within the city, unlike Mr. Penzone.

Charles Bare
City Council, At-Large B

Attachment: RESTORE Act Resolution

Earlier in the day, Brian Hooper, URAC chairman, and John Peacock, DIB board member, both wrote to Bare letters of recommendations supporting Penzone:

From: Peacock Jr,John L
Sent: Thursday, January 24, 2013 10:44 AM
Subject: David Penzone


Thanks for the request for input regarding the appointment of David Penzone by the mayor to the Restore Act Committee. I served with Dave on the Pension Committee. He was an extraordinary leader on a very difficult topic. I cannot think of anyone else more qualified to represent the City than Dave Penzone.

Residing in the city gives someone the ability to vote on city issues. It is short sighted to think that all the good ideas can only come from a pool of 50,000 people. Certainly we don’t object to recommendations by city staff that do not live in the city.

When I first became involved in the charter movement that led to our current form of government, there were several council members that would always bring up the fact that I didn’t live in the city at the time. Because of the change of government, I moved both my residence and business into the city. Good ideas and good people shouldn’t be limited by geographical boundaries.

Thanks for your commitment to the City of Pensacola


John L. Peacock, Jr.

Letter from Hooper: Jan.24.2013 Letter