Santa Ana City Council will hold a special closed session meeting Thursday afternoon to discuss City Manager Dave Ream’s employment.

The scheduling of such a meeting fuels speculation, that has gone on for months now, that Ream could be retiring.

If Ream were indeed leaving, it would mean a complete turnover of the city’s senior leadership in a matter of months.

City Attorney Joe Fletcher left in December, taking with him a $333,779 taxpayer funded windfall. Soon after, Community Development Director Cindy Nelson left after Councilwoman Claudia Alvarez scrutinized her department’s spending at a public meeting.

Ream’s departure could also be expensive for the city. Ream’s contract guarantees a minimum severance of $524,544 if he is terminated. It also allows him to accrue unlimited vacation time. However, city officials have refused to release how many hours in paid time off he’s actually accrued.

Unused paid time off made up the majority of Fletcher’s payout. He cashed out $191,699 in unused paid time off.

Ream has been with the city since 1978 and was appointed city manager in 1986. Ream has also served as deputy city manager, director of community development and budget officer, according to the city’s website.


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