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Natchez hires city planner

NATCHEZ — City Clerk Donnie Holloway announced Wednesday that Robert Nix has been selected as the new city planner.

Nix, who is certified by the American Institute of Certified Planners, most recently served as director of community development and planning for the City of North Miami Beach, Fla. Nix served in that post for nine months before leaving in January.

From September 2007 to January 2009, Nix served as assistant city manager of development services for the City of Corpus Christi, Texas, where he supervised a staff of 70 employees.

From January 2006 to September 2007, Nix served as director of growth management for St. Lucie County, Fla., where he supervised a staff of 20 employees.

For nine years, from October 1996 to January 2006, Nix served as director of development services for the City of Deltona, Fla. Nix was the city’s first planner, and created organizations for planning, zoning, development review, code enforcement and building permitting.

A graduate of Florida State University, Nix earned his bachelor’s degree in history in 1971, and his master’s degree in urban and regional planning in 1978.

Holloway said Nix’s first day is June 14, just in time for the Natchez Planning Commission’s monthly meeting June 17.

Nix succeeds former Natchez City Planner John “Rusty” Lewis, who was terminated by Mayor Jake Middleton and the Natchez Board of Aldermen in October.

The day before Lewis was terminated, Middleton announced the layoffs of Planning Specialist Dawn Williams and Land Use Planner Walter Huston. Secretary Darlene D. Williams retired shortly following the layoffs.

The planning department is currently reduced to Dawes and head secretary Kristie Martin.

Middleton and the aldermen interviewed 10 candidates for city planner.