Note: This blog's templates will be updated this afternoon to a responsive design bringing it in line with

At that time, we will also change to the Facebook commenting system. You will need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment.

« Jackson Health System fundraising for bond referendum | Main | Miami-Dade mayor: Police union foe missed calling as actor, could play Tony Soprano »

Mayor's arrest upends Homestead political system

@ben_brasch @cveiga

The last city manager had left just as a public corruption investigation was starting. The one before that was fired after a private investigator uncovered visits to a dominatrix website on the manager’s city computer.

So in 2010, with Homestead’s city manager’s office empty yet again, City Council members opted for a national search to find a replacement. It was the first time in recent history that the insular city decided to look outside for help.

They found George Gretsas, a veteran administrator who had most recently run the city of Fort Lauderdale.

He came. He saw. He was shocked.

Homestead Mayor Steve Bateman, records and interviews with city officials indicate, was all but running a parallel branch of government — badgering department heads, midwifing cut-rate land deals with campaign donors and business partners, interfering with hiring and firing. This, in a city where a professional manager is supposed to call the shots.

More here.