Cowell, now officially filling his role, said he has some major projects he'll be working on with the city council.
"The voters have entrusted us with $110 million and we've got to present a schedule of how we're going to spend those dollars and get those investments made over the next 5 years," said Cowell. "We'll be doing that with the council in January. We've got a major project moving forward with the public safety radios."
And it won't be long before staff has to start putting together a new budget proposal for 2018.
The city will continue to run as usual while Cowell holds this role.
"My focus will be trying to continue to bring that stability and sort of calmness in the staff so that they can focus on what they need to do, which is taking care of the city's business, which they do so well," said Cowell. "We just need to make sure that that stays on track."
Cowell may consider applying for the permanent city manager position.
"When the council announces [the application is open] I'll evaluate at that point whether it's the right move for me, my family and the city."
He would go through a hiring and interview process just like any outside candidate.
For now the council is looking forward to working with Cowell in the interim position.
"He's a very valuable employee," said Mayor Paul Harpole. "He's always surprised me. His knowledge is deep and his ability to talk to people and get to issues is extraordinary, so that's one of the talents we look for for anybody in any job and he certainly possesses those things."
No one knows how long Cowell will serve as interim, but he said he plans to take on the job day by day.