HENRICO, Va. (WTVR)—The Henrico Board of Supervisors voted tonight that current Deputy County Manager John Vithoulkas will replace County Manager Virgil Hazelett.
The vote was unanimous that Vithoulkas will take the spot when Hazelett retires on Jan. 16, 2013.
Hazelett’s decision was announced at the last meeting. He has served in this position more than 20 years.
Vithoulkas, who has served Henrico county since 1997, will become the eighth county manager since 1934.
Vithoulkas will act as the chief administrative officer for the county, which includes responsiblities for implementing policies and overseeing the daily operations of the county.
He will oversee more than 35 agencies with approximately 4,000 general government employees. Duties include preparation and oversight of the county’s annual budget, which tops $1 billion in operating and capital expenditures for the 2012-13 fiscal year, and preparation of the county’s annual legislative program before the Virginia General Assembly, according to the Board of Supervisors.
“There are so many people we could have chosen,” said one board member, as they warned Vithoulkas that he has big shoes to fill.
During Hazelett’s reign, the county managed to make it through this recent financial storm without layoffs or reducing services. Vithoulkas admitted it’s too early to tell if this trend will continue.
“What happens to the economy after the election, from that, we’ll base our revenues. One thing Henrico doesn’t do is spend money it doesn’t have,” said Vithoulkas.
Vithoulkas said his priority in this top executive position will be the economy.
CBS 6 wanted to know how he plans to address claims made by county residents, who say more economic development is driven toward the west end of Henrico rather than the county’s east end.
“As the economy improves, then development patterns will follow,” said Vithoulkas.
Vithoulkas is a naturalized citizen, originally from Greece. He is a graduate of J.R. Tucker High School and Virginia Commonwealth University.