KEY COLONY BEACH — City administrator Christopher Moonis suddenly tendered his resignation last Thursday at a Key Colony Beach City Commission meeting.

The meeting agenda referenced a contract evaluation and renewal, not resignation.

Reportedly, city commissioners were receiving numerous complaints via text and email about Moonis, and when the topic of his contract renewal arose, Moonis said he was blindsided by the widespread negative feedback.

Moonis wanted his final day to be Sept. 30, because his contract was consistent with the fiscal year ending then. However, Mayor John DeNeale insisted the resignation be effective immediately, and Moonis’ next paycheck would be his last and there would be no severance pay.

After the meeting, Moonis was escorted by city officers to gather his personal items and leave, residents said.

Also during the meeting, City Attorney Tom Wright announced his retirement before year’s end.

Alice McKinney, who administers a Key Colony Beach Facebook Group page, alerted residents Sept. 22 that Moonis’ contract would be on the agenda.

“The commissioners can take this opportunity to terminate Mr. Moonis’s contract at this meeting without doing any further evaluations should they feel that it is in the best interest of the city, so this becomes an important time to have your voices heard,” McKinney posted.

After the meeting, DeNeale sent an email sharing his acceptance of the city’s leadership responsibilities.

“Today, our city administrator, Chris Moonis, informed the commission that he will not seek a new contract on Oct. 1. We wish him well and best of luck in his future endeavors. As the mayor, I am assuming the duties of city administrator under our charter until a replacement is hired by the commission. Any administrator business for me should be addressed through city hall. … Thank you for your patience as we make a smooth transition of city hall leadership.”

In other news, LIVS Associates of Coral Gables is to provide a redesign of a new city hall with the post office as part of the main building. The commission wants smaller buildings and no retail center.

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