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Manhattan Beach City Manager Announces Retirement

Apr 16, 2024 10:31PM ● By Jeanne Fratello

Manhattan Beach City Manager Bruce Moe. Photo via city of Manhattan Beach.

Manhattan Beach City Manager Bruce Moe announced on Tuesday night that he would be retiring in August. 

Moe has served as city manager since 2018, but his tenure with the city has been much longer. He began working for Manhattan Beach in 1989 as a general services manager; in May, he will have marked 35 years with the city.

"Thank you again for a great career here - I've appreciated every moment," Moe told the City Council at its Tuesday meeting.

Moe added that he would be ready to assist with and is looking forward to "helping to acclimate" his successor.

Councilmembers were quick to both praise Moe and to emphasize that the retirement was Moe's choice, and not due to any action of the council.

(The City Council had dismissed the previous city manager, Mark Danaj, without cause in 2018.)

"His retiring is not because of any action on this council - He has served his time and he is allowed to go 'back into the wild,'" said Councilmember Steve Napolitano. "We wish nothing but the best for him moving forward."

Mayor Joe Franklin said that in honor of Moe's "love of poetry," he had composed a limerick to mark the occasion:

"There once was a man named Bruce Moe
Who decided it was now time to go.
After 35 years,
He'll ditch his ties for some beers;
Now it's sandals and shorts - 'Yah, Bro!'"

Though they were eager to end a meeting that had run well past the three-hour mark, councilmembers added that there would be time for many formal accolades in the coming months.

The city manager, who is hired by the City Council, oversees the daily operations of the city, implements the policies adopted by City Council, and provides leadership and direction to city staff.

Moe has served through multiple tumultuous events in Manhattan Beach, including the COVID-19 pandemic, controversies related to Bruce's Beach, the retirement and hiring of a new police chief, and the dismissal and hiring of a new fire chief.

At last month's State of the City event, Moe told attendees that the "big picture" of the city looked good, with a balanced budget, increasing reserves, revenues recovering, labor agreements in place, "clean" audit opinions, and Triple A credit ratings.

Editor's note: After the MB News story was published, the city released a press release:

“The retirement of Bruce Moe marks the end of an era for our city,” said Franklin in the statement. “For more than three decades, his calm and strong leadership has made him a true asset to our City. The City Council and our entire Manhattan Beach community extend our deepest gratitude to Bruce for his decades of excellent public service. He is the embodiment of the values of service and dedication which have left an indelible mark on our City’s landscape. We are so grateful to him for investing his time, career, and heart in Manhattan Beach.”

“I have been incredibly blessed to serve Manhattan Beach for many years and am beyond grateful for the opportunities I have had with the city,” said Moe in the statement. “It has been my honor to work with so many wonderful people who care a great deal about Manhattan Beach.” Crediting loyal and devoted City employees, Moe said, “Our team puts our residents first and takes great pride in being part of the fabric of Manhattan Beach. I am leaving Manhattan Beach in good hands.”

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