Brooks takes over in Avon |

Brooks takes over in Avon

Christine Ina Casillas
Vail Daily/Melinda KruseLarry Brooks, a long-time Avon employee, has been given the nod to succeed the departing Bill Efting as town manager.

Larry Brooks, a Colorado native who served as Avon’s assistant town manager, has been hired by the Town Council to be the new town manager. It wasn’t a big surprise for him, he said, but a seamless transition.

No other candidates were courted for the position, said Mayor Pro Tem Mac McDevitt, making the decision an easy one for the council after interviewing Brooks Nov. 26. The vote was unanimous.

Brooks replaces Bill Efting, who managed Avon for five years before resigning in October to take a similar position in South Padre Island, Texas.

“We felt he met all the criteria for the position,” McDevitt said. “He’s very experienced, exceptionally experienced in Avon.”

For now, Avon will not hire a new assistant manager to replace Brooks’ former post.

“We had to ask if we could reduce two positions into one, would it work and could Larry do it,” he said. “We decided unanimously that he could do it.”

Brooks suggested during his interview that the town eliminate the assistant town manager position, replacing the salary for other town needs and amenities.

“That was part of the reason why we chose Larry,” McDevitt said. “If the management staff was slightly reorganized, then we can do without a full-time assistant manager. It has given us an opportunity to save some money by that reorganization.”

Brooks said the town now will undergo other financial rearranging.

“We need to find out exactly where we want to go,” Brooks said. “It’s easy to manage things when we have the money to do it.”

The money from the assistant town manager’s position will be filtered back into the 2003 budget and used for projects that might have been put on hold, McDevitt said.

Without an assistant town manager, Brooks said it can help in a variety of capacities.

“It’s better off to tighten that belt a little bit. The first thing to focus on is getting a grip on the state’s economy,” he said. “Right now, we’re trying to have group discussions and find out where our finances are and control (the finances) within our means.”

McDevitt reiterated a decision made this fall by the previous Town Council that no raises will be issued to town employees for the fiscal year 2003. But where the extra cash will be sent has yet to be determined, he added, and the council plans to reevaluate the budget soon during its annual retreat.

“We don’t want deficit spending,” Brooks said. “We want to provide the best services we can within the means of our budget.

“We’re not as bad off as people think – just as long as we live within our means,” he added. “To live within our budget is a novel approach, don’t you think?”

Brooks has been with Avon for more than 15 years, working in various town departments with myriad titles, such as public works director, director of public works and recreation, recreation and transportation, director of municipal services, Avon Metro District administrator, assistant town manager, human resources director and now town manager.

“He’s a well-known quantity to us,” McDevitt said. “We all glad that we had an assistant town manager to turn to, especially somebody as experienced as Larry Brooks.”

Brooks holds a master of education degree from Colorado State University and a bachelor of science degree from the University of Colorado.

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