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Santa Cruz administrator picked as new Morro Bay city manager

Scott Collins, 39, has been selected as Morro Bay’s new city manager. He will go before the City Council Tuesday for final approval.
Scott Collins, 39, has been selected as Morro Bay’s new city manager. He will go before the City Council Tuesday for final approval.

A top administrator for the city of Santa Cruz has been selected as Morro Bay’s new city manager, officials announced Thursday, three months after Morro Bay’s top administrator resigned so the city could find a leader with a “moderately different management approach.”

The conditional employment offer to Scott Collins, currently the deputy city manager and communications manager for the city of Santa Cruz, will go before the City Council for approval Tuesday.

If the council approves, Collins will start on Nov. 6 and earn an annual salary of $176,000.

Collins, 39, has been with Santa Cruz since May 2011. As deputy city manager, he oversaw the city’s Public Works and Parks and Recreation departments with a combined budget of $82 million and 330 full-time employees. Prior to Santa Cruz, he served as assistant to the city manager in Boulder, Colorado, and was a management analyst for the city and county of Denver.

He holds a bachelor of arts degree from UC Santa Cruz and a master of public administration from George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

“I am really looking forward to working with the Morro Bay community, council and staff in achieving their goals,” Collins wrote in a statement released Thursday. “Morro Bay is an amazing place, and I feel very fortunate to be joining the city team.”

Collins would replace former city manager David Buckingham, who was hired in August 2014 and resigned in June after a rocky tenure with the city. City officials at the time said it was “a good time for a change.”

Collins would be the city’s third permanent city manager in roughly four years.

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