Marty Small Mayor of Atlantic City

Council President Marty Small along with his wife Dr. La’Quetta and their daughter Jada, 11 and son Marty Jr. 9 speak with the media after be sworn in as the new interim mayor of Atlantic City at City Hall Atlantic City Friday Oct 4, 2019. Edward Lea Staff Photographer / Press of Atlantic City

ATLANTIC CITY — Interim Mayor Marty Small will take an unpaid leave of absence from his $93,000-a-year job as dean of athletics at Principle Academy Charter School in Egg Harbor Township to focus on the city.

"While I can’t comment in detail on individual personnel matters, I can confirm that Marty has taken an unpaid leave of absence from his full-time job in our district," said Peter Caporilli, Principle Academy founding member, a former board member and current member of the school's management company Polymath.

He said the charter school's students admire and are inspired by Small, "who has created a transformational student-athlete experience for them." 

Small is expected to be one of three people nominated tonight by city Democrats to replace Mayor Frank Gilliam, who resigned last week after pleading guilty to wire fraud in taking $87,000 from a youth basketball league.

"Hopefully I’m one of them," Small said of the nomination process. 

And Small will continue to be paid just his city council president salary of $29,800.

Department of Community Affairs spokeswoman Lisa Ryan said under the city municipal code, "a person appointed to temporarily serve as interim mayor (i.e., prior to City Council appointing an acting mayor) will do so without additional compensation." 

If ultimately chosen from among the three by council to be mayor, he will then give up his 2nd Ward seat and council presidency, and a committee of 2nd Ward Democrats will choose three names to nominate for the seat. Council will then vote for one of them.

"I can’t have two full-time jobs," Small said Tuesday. "So effective at the end of business today, I’m taking a leave of absence from the school job."

There will not be a time when he takes two salaries, Small said.

If he is not successful in the nomination process, he will still be able to go back to the education job.

"It's what the late great Jim Whelan did for 12 years," Small said of the former mayor, assemblyman and state senator.

Atlantic County Democratic Chairman Michael Suleiman said he is encouraging the city to replace Small with a woman on council in the 2nd Ward, and Small said he has long advocated for a woman to join the governing body.

After Tuesday night's meeting, council will have 30 days to make a decision on which of three nominees to choose to be the city's next mayor, Small said, until the November 2020 election, when candidates will run for the last year of Gilliam's unexpired term.

Staff Writers Colt Shaw and Claire Lowe contributed to this report.

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Staff Writer

In my first job after college got paid to read the New York Times and summarize articles for an early online data base. First reporting job was with The Daily Record in Parsippany. I have also worked in nonprofits, and have been with The Press since 1990.

Staff Writer

I cover breaking news on the digital desk. I graduated from Temple University in Dec. 2017 and joined the Press in the fall of 2018. Previously, I freelanced, covering Pennsylvania state politics and criminal justice reform.

Staff Writer

I began covering South Jersey in 2008 after graduating from Rowan University with a degree in journalism. I joined The Press in 2015. In 2013, I was awarded a NJPA award for feature writing as a reporter for The Current of Hamilton Township.

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