City of Toccoa Trying to Hire Back Former City Manager

September 5, 2013

By MJ Kneiser, WLHR Radio, Lavonia


The Toccoa City Commission is hoping to lure Franklin County Manager Billy Morse back to his old job as Toccoa City Manager after firing current city Manager Mike Jackson.

At a called meeting Tuesday morning, Toccoa City Commissioners unanimously voted to terminate Jackson as city manager.

They then announced they would vote on hiring former Toccoa City Manager Billy Morse, at the city commission’s regularly scheduled meeting on September 23.

After their meeting Tuesday, Toccoa Mayor David Austin says Jackson’s termination was not a performance issue.

As for the decision to bring back Morse, Austin says the commission did not interview any other candidates, and considers Morse the best option and sole finalist for the city manager job.

“Billy is someone, like I said, who had served the city well,” said Austin.  “We felt that, knowing the city and the employees and having worked here for so many years, he would be someone that could hit the ground running, without training and that kind of thing.”

Meantime, Morse emphasized Tuesday going back to Toccoa is by no means a done deal.

Morse, who recently had his contract with Franklin County extended to two years, said under the terms of that contract, he is allowed to give a 30-day notice should he decide to leave.

However, Morse said so far, he’s been very happy working for Franklin County.

“It’s going very well and I’m very happy,” Morse said. “I appreciate the opportunity Franklin County has given me. I think we have a good group of commissioners and things are going well. This is just another opportunity that has been presented to me.”

Morse served as Toccoa City Manager for more than seven years before leaving the post in October 2009 and becoming Franklin County Manager a month later.