01/16/11 — Huffman finalist for job in Mississippi

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Huffman finalist for job in Mississippi

By Kenneth Fine
Published in News on January 16, 2011 1:50 AM

Less than a month after announcing his retirement, Goldsboro's city manager is entertaining a comeback to government service -- just not in North Carolina.

The News-Argus learned Friday via www.gulflive.com that Joe Huffman is one of two candidates remaining for the city manager position in Pascagoula, Miss. -- a post that more than 75 people applied for.

Huffman, however, said he has made no decision on whether or not to accept the job if he, indeed, is offered it -- and rejected the notion that there are factors that make the opportunity in Mississippi better than the role he will leave within the next few months.

"If I'm ever going to retire from the North Carolina local government system and keep working, now's the time," he said. "But there it not a problem here at all -- anywhere. As far as I can tell, things are going very well."

But now that he has decide to retire, he only has two options, he added -- to remain in Goldsboro and take on work in an unrelated field or continue to work in the only career field he has known for decades in another state.

Huffman said he has not yet met members of the Pascagoula City Council or visited the city.

In a interview that published in early December, Huffman said he would retire March 10, a decision he made, in part, because Goldsboro has the pieces in place to ensure a strong future.

"I've thought about it for the last few years -- when might be the best time," he said then. "And right now, the conditions seem to be good.

"Everything seems to be stable. Every department head is very strong. We have the perfect team."