Double Dipping Drama Comes to an End in Hobbs, New Mexico

By: Sarah Snyder

HOBBS, NEW MEXICO - The people spoke out. Now the Hobbs City Manager's calling it quits. On Tuesday night, Hobbs city leaders voted to rescind the controversial double dipping contract with Eric Honeyfield; a move that avoided putting the issue on the ballot.

The Hobbs City Commissioners decided to do away with the employment agreement that they voted on just a few days ago. They were going to allow City Manager Eric Honeyfield to retire and collect his pension on top of a hefty salary that would have ended up totaling more than even what Vice President Joe Biden makes. The reason why this has been so controversial is because the City Manager has previously denied other city employees the very same agreement he received. NewsWest9 spoke with both Mayor Reagan and Mr. Honeyfield. They say that contract got thrown out the window because of the huge public outcry.

"We heard people talking and we decided to back up and change our plan," Hobbs Mayor, Gary Reagan, said.

"There was a significant public outcry to the decision by the Commission and wanting to be sensitive to the will of the people," City Manager, Eric Honeyfield, said. "The two unions were active in the effort: the police union and the fire union. I have been very steadfast in holding them accountable and such, so I understand the negative reaction to my situation."

Honeyfield told NewsWest 9 after the outpouring of discontent, he's decided to leave as City Manager, but it won't be right away. He plans to stay on to help finish up some big projects, then eventually resign. Now the search is on for a new City Manager. Honeyfield said he plans to help with the upcoming recruitment process.