CAPE CORAL, Fla. — City Council has appointed Michael Ilczyszyn as the new Cape Coral City Manager, a job coming with challenges ahead.
Ilczyszyn is the former Public Works Director and has been with the city since 2002. With his government knowledge, he has laid out three priorities within his first year of being seated as one of the top local government jobs.
"Economic development master plan, transportation master plan and the growth model update," he said. "Those three things are important to see how much longer we have to build out, what we need during that build out."
He says if the city does not keep up with the growth, the level of service for residents will decline. However, he says he's going to try and make sure that doesn't happened.
"I prepared my career for this," Ilczyszyn said.
To address the growth, he says the city is in the process of updating the growth model, among other projects.
"We’re right in the middle of the city’s first-ever transportation multi-modal master plan that will help us in the future," Ilczyszyn explained.
To get a better understand of what the people who live in Cape Coral need, Ilczyszyn says he will be available and reachable as he was as interim City Manager.
"We’ll be able to understand what are the needs of the community, what are the needs of the businesses and target those and bring those to Cape Coral," he said.
All the projects he wants to push forward, once City Council approves the final decisions, will cost a pretty penny. Ilczyszyn says he's going to work with local, state and federal leaders to secure money to tackle our city's rapid growth.
"Being able to make sure that the government can provide the services they expect when they come to a city like Cape Coral is going to be our biggest challenge," he said.
Ilczyszyn was appointed seven months after former City Manager Rob Hernandez was fired by City Council, terminating his contract early.
Back in February, a letter sent by the former city manager accused Cape Coral of retaliation for blowing the whistle on what Hernandez calls “discriminatory employment practices.”
This letter was sent to the city attorney on February 14, 2023, by attorney Benjamin Yorkman with Yormak Employment & Disability Law in Bonita Springs.
Hernandez claimed by pointing out several concerns to members of the city council and the mayor, it led to his being fired.
The City of Cape Coral responded and said,
Please allow this correspondence to serve as the City of Cape Coral's response to your client, Roberto Hernandez's, February 14, 2023, correspondence. The City denies that it took any improper action against your client and denies that it engaged in any wrongdoing associated with your client's former employment. The City terminated Mr. Hernandez without cause and accordingly paid Mr. Hernandez severance under the terms of his employment agreement. The City will not be paying Mr. Hernandez any money beyond the severance that has already been paid.