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Manchester aldermen make economic development a city department

August 07. 2013 10:42PM

MANCHESTER -- The Board of Mayor and Aldermen has voted to again make economic development a city department, rather than a division of the mayor’s office.

The 11-2 vote at the aldermen’s meeting Tuesday represents a reversal from the decision made three months ago to pare down the department and place it within the mayor’s office.

Much of the work of the department had been performed by Mayor Ted Gatsas and his staff since its chief abruptly resigned in November, and Gatsas argued strongly to make economic development a permanent division of his office.

A majority of aldermen had backed this view in the spring, but since then representatives of the business community raised concerns about the plan.

The aldermen voted Tuesday to hire a new economic development chief and to have the office be located in its former location on the first floor of City Hall.

Gatsas said he intends to again propose bringing economic development into the mayor’s office in a year if the department is “not successful.”

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