Transitions: Douglas County, NE; Pasco County, FL; Chesapeake, VA and more

Douglas County, Nebraska (population 517,110): The Douglas County Board voted unanimously Tuesday to make Patrick Bloomingdale the county administrator come February, according to The Omaha World Herald. Bloomingdale, 43, has worked the past 10 years as deputy county administrator. He joined the county in 1993 as a deputy county attorney in the civil division. The board agreed to increase Bloomgindale’s salary to $138,000 in February. His salary will climb to $142,500 after three months in the new job. Bloomingdale currently makes about $87,000. Bloomingdale will replace Kathleen Kelley, who will retire at the end of January. Kelley, who turns 66 next month, has been with the county for 24 years, 15 of them as county administrator.

Pasco County, Florida (population 464,697): The man who took over Pasco County’s scandal-ridden county government more than 30 years ago will soon release his tight grip on power, according to the Tampa Bay Times. County Administrator John Gallagher told the Tampa Bay Times he will retire in late spring, giving county commissioners a transition period while they search for his successor. Gallagher has been a leading figure in local government, transforming a once-rural county poised for exploding growth. He is one of the pioneers of the Suncoast Parkway. In recent years, he aggressively tried to shed the county’s status as a bedroom community with few major industries. City and county managers in Florida have an average tenure of less than seven years. Hernando has had nine county administrators since 1990. Gallagher will retire a few weeks after his 31st anniversary. He is the longest-serving county administrator in Florida history. He also loves to spar with developers to secure the best possible deal for the county on a major project. Consider recent negotiations with the Porter family on a proposed tourism sports complex in Wesley Chapel intended to lure regional tournaments. His staff avoided him during the talks, saying he wasn’t smiling much. Gallagher’s departure is not wholly unexpected. Commissioners elected this year said they expected to choose a successor during their four-year term. Several veteran deputies recently retired, including budget chief and close confidant Mike Nurrenbrock. Ann Hildebrand, an ally on the commission for almost his entire tenure, just stepped down from her office. Gallagher did not arrive in county government at its finest hour. Commission Chairman Barry Doyle was part of a three-vote majority to hire him in March 1982. A week into the job, two members of the state attorney’s office visited Gallagher’s office to tell him about a grand jury investigation. Within six months, Doyle was indicted for accepting bribes from men who did business with the county. Part of the grand jury’s work included a series of recommendations to clean up county government. Gallagher knew the county was headed in the right direction after commissioners gave him the power to fire staff without commission approval. Property Appraiser Mike Wells recently compared Pasco in Gallagher’s initial years to “medieval times.” The county lacked several key pieces of infrastructure in the early ’80s: A water and sewer system. Parks. Libraries. A trash incinerator. A bigger jail. A road network to handle future growth. Gallagher oversaw the creation of all those things. In the past few years, Pasco has landed planned expansions of T. Rowe Price and Raymond James Financial. New growth policies encourage dense development along the county’s southern edge and could attract more high-paying jobs. Gallagher lives in New Port Richey with his wife, Judy, an assistant principal at Gulf High School. Their children are grown. He isn’t sure what he’ll do after he retires. Perhaps some travelling. He won’t run for public office. He also ruled out endorsing a candidate to replace him. A top candidate will likely be Gallagher’s chief assistant for the last five years, Michele Baker.

Chesapeake, Virginia (population 222,209): The manager of York County, South Carolina will be Chesapeake’s new city manager, according to WKTR. James E. Baker will begin work in Chesapeake on January 14, 2013. Baker was the unanimous choice of the city council. Prior to moving to York County in 2007, Mr. Baker served for 16 years as director of administration and chief of staff to the county executive of St. Louis County, Missouri. St. Louis County surrounds the city of St. Louis and is considered the state’s economic engine. Before beginning his career in municipal management, Mr. Baker worked for the county’s criminal prosecutor for 11 years. In that role, Mr. Baker tried major felony cases including capital murder cases, investigated and tried most public corruption and white collar crime cases, and supervised ten members of the trial staff and eleven support staff. Mr. Baker graduated summa cum laude from the University of Missouri with an undergraduate degree in chemistry, and received his law degree in 1979 from the Washington University School of Law in St. Louis. Though several details of his employment package remain to be sorted out, Mr. Baker has been offered and accepted a two-year contract with a salary of $205,000 a year. Baker is 58 years old and is married and the father of two sons.

Florence County, South Carolina (population 136,885): KG “Rusty” Smith said he started his new Florence County administrator’s job Monday morning, according to WPDE. He said there’s a lot of work to catch up on that was left behind by the former administrator, Thomas Robinson, who resigned earlier this month after 13 months on the job. Smith said his not sure of his exact salary, but that he’s making about $7,000 less than Robinson. Smith stated he’s so excited about job that he reported in to work Monday morning at 5:45 a.m. Florence County Council members voted last Thursday to offer the Florence County Council Chairman the position. He then resigned before accepting the administrator’s position. Smith was up for the job last year, but withdrew his name due to controversy about his position as chairman.

According to the Morning News, the county administrator’s position pays roughly $135,000 a year. Smith, a small business owner, has an undergraduate degree in business from the University of South Carolina. That met the minimum educational requirements of the job posted in 2011 by council. But it falls somewhat short of the typical large county administrator’s resume, which usually includes a master’s, and a degree in finance or the law, or both.

Sunrise, Florida (population 84,439): Commissioners agreed Wednesday to hire a well-respected outsider to lead City Hall, according to the Sun Sentinel. Alan Cohen, a former strong mayor in Ithaca, N.Y., wowed city leaders during a lengthy interview process less than two weeks ago. Commissioners agreed to meet in two weeks to discuss Cohen’s salary and contract. Cohen, who recently moved to Sunrise with his wife and newborn daughter, spent one year as the city manager in Sunny Isles Beach. He resigned from the $180,000-a-year job in June. He served as the strong mayor of Ithaca from 1996 to 2003. He has also run a management consulting company and a restaurant in Ithaca. Commissioners chose Cohen over Richard Salamon, who was appointed interim city manager in August after Bruce Moeller left to take a job in Pinellas County. City leaders agreed to eliminate the other finalists: Steve Fitzgibbons, a former city manager in Port Arthur, Texas; and Angel Jones, a former city manager in Gaithersburg, Md.

William A. Rawlings

Menifee, California (population 77,519): Menifee’s city manager, Bill Rawlings, stepped down from his position during a special City Council meeting Tuesday, Nov. 20, and will be replaced by Rob Johnson, a senior manager, according to The Press-Enterprise. The council called the meeting to conduct a closed session to evaluate the performance of Rawlings, who managed the city for less than two years. The decision for Rawlings to step down was mutual, the city attorney Joseph Fletcher said at the meeting. A press release states Rawlings will leave at the end of November, but Johnson said after the meeting he will begin his job as the interim city manager on Wednesday, Nov. 21. Though city officials declined to comment on what triggered the unexpected departure, the change will affect the city “in a positive manner,” Mayor Pro-Tem Tom Fuhrman said after the meeting.

Flower Mound, Texas (population 64,669): The Flower Mound Town Council voted unanimously to appoint Roanoke City Manager Jimmy Stathatos as the new Town Manager of Flower Mound at the November 19 regular meeting, according to Pegasus News. Stathatos has served as city manager in Roanoke since 1998 and has managed the organization through some of the most rapid and dynamic growth of any municipality in the state, while maintaining one of the lowest property tax rates in Texas. During his tenure, Roanoke’s tax base grew from $99 million to approximately $1.7 billion and sales tax revenue increased to more than $10 million a year. Mayor Tom Hayden and the town council were unified in conveying the qualities the new Flower Mound town manager must possess to Keller-based SGR Executive Search. These prioritized criteria included experience as a town manager or assistant town manager in a premier quality-of-life community in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, a track record of success in spurring high quality economic development, and a proven commitment in creating a successful organizational culture that is passionate about customer service. The qualified candidate must also be an authentic leader who has inspired and motivated employees while creating a positive and productive workplace with a history of results-oriented management excellence, and a serious commitment to be a good steward of taxpayer resources. During the search for the next town manager, SGR Executive Search discussed numerous prospective candidates with the council, resulting in a field of eight top applicants. After further discussion, the field was narrowed to three candidates, who were then invited to interview with the council. One of the factors that tipped the council toward Stathatos was his extensive hands-on experience and track record in economic development. As city manager, Stathatos directs and manages Roanoke’s economic development program, which has helped create more than 3,700 new jobs and approximately $1 billion in new development projects including General Motors, Citigroup, and many other Fortune 500 companies. The Texas Economic Development Department recognized Roanoke’s success with its Community Development Award, and the Dallas Business Journal recognized Roanoke twice for “Best Real Estate Deals.”

Burnsville, Minnesota (population 60,306): After ten years as the city of Burnsville’s top administrator, City Manager Craig Ebeling announced Tuesday his plans to retire on March 29, 2013, according to the Sun This Week. Ebeling was hired as Burnsville’s sixth city manager in 2003. He began his career with the city as assistant city engineer in 1987. He was promoted to city engineer in 1988 and was promoted to deputy city manager for parks, planning and public works in 1993. From 1995 to 2001, Ebeling took a job in the private sector as a regional office manager/client services manager for Howard R. Green Co. In 2001, he returned to Burnsville as the city’s director of development and redevelopment, a position he held for two years before becoming city manager. As city manager, Ebeling has championed a number of partnerships, with both  private entities and other public organizations, according to a city news release. During his tenure, he has regularly engaged Dakota County, other city managers, local school districts and local businesses in discussions about how to work together to provide high-quality services to the community at a lower cost. Under Ebeling’s leadership, Burnsville has been a leader in using technology to improve city services and has seen continued growth of its businesses community, the news release said. During his tenure the city also witnessed the construction of the Burnsville Performing Arts Center, the Heart of  the City downtown area and the Burnsville Surface Water Treatment Plant. Ebeling also had a hand in ensuring the long-term maintenance of the city’s infrastructure, having worked to create the city’s infrastructure trust fund plan in 1995. The long-range plan for Burnsville’s future infrastructure improvements has been used by the city ever since. Burnsville has also consistently maintained a Aaa bond rating under Ebeling’s watch. The City Council intends to hire an executive search firm to coordinate the search process for a new city manager and hopes to have a replacement hired by April 1, 2013.

Calaveras County, California (population 45,578): Jeanne Boyce, Calaveras County’s administrator, announced her retirement, according to the Calaveras Enterprise. Her last day will be Dec. 30, she said. Boyce, 57, the former director of the county’s Health Services Agency, became the county’s chief administrative officer in November 2009.

DeKalb County, Illinois (population 43,862): Gary Hanson was named the new DeKalb County administrator Wednesday by a unanimous vote from County Board members, ending a lengthy search process originally expected to end in August, according to the Daily Chronicle. Hanson will replace DeKalb County Administrator Ray Bockman, who has held the position for 28 years, starting in December. Hanson has served in DeKalb County government for 29 years. He will make a base annual salary of $155,000. After being named the new administrator, an emotional Hanson thanked the board members, his mentor Bockman, department heads and his family for their support and confidence. He said he has much to be thankful during this holiday season. A late change in the county’s search process opened the door for Hanson to become the next administrator. After leaving interviews with finalists unimpressed in July, board members decided to restart the process and use the opportunity to change requirements for the job. The board changed the county code to allow candidates with 10 years of local government management, nine of which must be at the administrative level, to apply for the position without a master’s degree. The previous code required a master’s degree in either business or public administration as well as years of experience, although not as many. Board members also hired search firm Voorhees Associates for $19,900 to handle the second round of the candidate search. Not everyone supported Hanson earlier in the process, but they voiced their support Wednesday when the final vote came. Executive committee members including Board Chairman Larry Anderson, R-Malta, Ken Andersen, R-Sycamore and John Gudmunson, R-Somonauk, had recommended finalist Sue McLaughlin to their committee a week earlier but changed their stance Wednesday. Andersen said he was primarily concerned with bringing “new blood” into the county at first, but after thinking about the decision more and speaking with people in the county, he is confident the right person was chosen for the job. Bockman was also honored at the meeting as he was told there would be a bench in his honor installed at one of the county’s forest preserves and his final day on the job – Nov. 30 – would be Ray Bockman Day in DeKalb County. After more than 350 County Board meetings, Bockman said he could not have asked for a better ending.

Texarkana, Texas (population 36,411): The new year will bring a new city manager to Texarkana, Texas, according to the Texarkana Gazette. John Whitson will start Jan. 2, with an annual salary of $146,500, according to an employment contract unanimously approved Monday night by the City Council. Whitson, 63, has been the town manager of Morrisville, North Carolina.

Burlingame, California (population 28,806): Burlingame’s new city manager, Lisa Goldman, is looking forward to becoming part of the community with which she will be working, according to the San Mateo Daily Journal. Burlingame City Manager Jim Nantell actually retired at the start of 2012 but stayed on through this year while the council searched for a replacement. Goldman, 44, currently serves as the assistant city manager of Alameda. She was unanimously selected by the City Council to replace Nantell on Oct. 30 in closed session. On Monday, the council will formally approve her contract. Under the proposed contract, Goldman will receive an annual salary of $214,000. Goldman was interested in Burlingame because of the city’s size and active engagement. She noted it’s a well-run city. Goldman knows she has big shoes to fill but is looking forward to working with Nantell for a couple of days in December before he officially retires. Once in office, Goldman’s first order of business will be to find a finance director — budget development will begin right away, she noted. Burlingame also has a number of long-term infrastructure projects that Goldman is excited to be a part of, such as the Broadway overpass. However, those projects are not fully funded — another big challenge for Goldman to take on. Goldman, who currently lives in Oakland, has more than 22 years of experience in local government and nonprofits. She spent her first seven years in Palo Alto then grew up in Southern California. After graduating from Harvard University with a bachelor’s degree in American history, Goldman wasn’t sure what to do. She called the local city manager, at her mother’s suggestion, in hopes of working on the new recycling projects. As an administrative intern, she was taken under the wing of the city manager who taught her about the various parts of the city. Thinking a career in government may be her path, Goldman moved to Washington, D.C. and worked for three years with U.S. Rep. Henry Waxman. In 1995, Goldman decided to go back to school. She earned her master’s degree in public policy from the University of California at Berkeley. She did work in tobacco control just after graduating but missed her government roots by 1999. With some networking, she landed a position with the city of Fremont in government relations. She also took on special projects through February 2007. In 2007, Goldman took a deputy city manager job with Alameda. During 2010, she was named acting city manager. Goldman was promoted to assistant city manager after that position ended. Goldman plans to move to Burlingame and really become part of the community she will be representing. In her free time, she’s a competitive swimmer and enjoys road cycling.

Clinton, Iowa (population 26,885): A week after being asked to submit his resignation, Clinton City Administrator Jeff Horne obliged, according to the Clinton Herald. Horne stepped down after Clinton City Council members requested his resignation during a special meeting. Horne’s employment is still pending a resolution from the Clinton City Council. Mayor Mark Vulich said the Nov. 27 Council meeting will include a discussion on the procedure for selecting a new city administrator. Horne’s contract stipulates he will receive six months aggregate salary and six months of family health insurance. The severance will not include any deferred compensation, retirement, car allowance, or IPERS payment. The Council requested Horne to resign after nearly a month of his absence from City Hall, which he previously attributed to resolving “personal issues.” According to a memo from Vulich, Council members have formed a special committee in the past during the selection process for hiring a new city administrator. More discussion during the Nov. 27 meeting will include how the city administrator duties will be handled during the search process, Vulich said.Horne was hired by the city in October 2009 with a salary of $95,000. Horne worked as the city administrator for Mitchellville before accepting the position in Clinton.

Claremore, Oklahoma (population 18,581): Claremore has hired a Rhode Island resident as its new city manager, spokeswoman Cassie Woods said Friday, according to the Tulsa World. Jim Thomas of West Warwick, R.I., will succeed Daryl Golbek, who announced in June that he was resigning from that position but would continue as the public works director. Thomas will assume his new post Nov. 26, Woods said. He has governmental administrative experience in six states, last serving as a town administrator in Kingston, Mass., a town of about 12,500 residents. He has held similar jobs in Rhode Island, Colorado, Wisconsin, Illinois and Utah. He received a bachelor’s degree in political science and administration from Weber State University in Utah and a master’s degree in public administration from Brigham Young University.

Winchester, Kentucky (population 18,368): After more than six years at the post, Ken Kerns will retire as Winchester city manager at the end of the year, according to The Winchester Sun. The commission thanked Kerns for his service. Commissioner Shannon Cox told Kerns he would be missed. Book said Kerns was the best city manager he’s worked with since joining the commission. After the measure passed unamiously, Burtner told Kerns the commission appreciated him very much. The board reluctantly approved a measure that accepts Kerns’ retirement effective Dec. 31.

Bellaire, Texas (population 16,855): Bellaire City Manager Bernie Satterwhite tonight announced that he plans to retire in 2014. Satterwhite made his announcement during his city manager’s report to city council. At the end of the council meeting, Councilmember Corbett Parked publically thanked Satterwhite for his service, which was followed by applause from council. Satterwhite was hired as Bellaire’s city manager in 2000. Prior to coming to work for the city, he spent two years as executive director of the United Way of Lauderdale County in Meridian, Miss and 25 years in the U.S. Navy as a pilot. He retired as Commanding Officer of Naval Air Station Meridian, Miss. in 1998. Satterwhite also had his 12th annual city manager evaluation tonight. The city council unanimously approved a salary of $151,925, or a three percent raise, for the city manager.

Abington, Massachusetts (population 15,985): John D’Agostino was hired as Abington’s Town Manager in 2010 but along the way he’s ruffled feathers, according to Selectmen who voted 3-2 to not renew another three contract with D’Agostino. The Town Manager’s annual salary has been about $120,000. Selectmen Chair Andrew Burbine was the only board member who spoke in favor of keeping D’Agostino because he believes D’Agostino showed leadership when Abington’s budget was cut by $1 million last year. However the other four Abington Selectmen say that D’Agostino has a problem with maintaining positive relationships, explaining that he doesn’t have the composure or attitude to be a Town Manager. It was Selectmen Kevin Donovan who made the motion to not reappoint D’Agostino once his contract expires in April. D’Agostino will not be paid severance because Abington Selectmen believe he breached his contract by failing to work in harmony and respect with other town boards and committees. His last day is April 26th, 2013.

Dallas, Oregon (population 14,583): The city of Dallas announced Tuesday that it has appointed Ronald Foggin as its new city manager, according to the Statesman Journal. Foggin will begin serving on Jan. 2. He replaces Jerry Wyatt who resigned July 2 amid city financial irregularities. Wyatt formally was charged with 17 counts, including felony counts of aggravated theft and computer crimes. He has pleaded not guilty. Foggin most recently served as the assistant city administrator in Lehi, Utah, population 47,000, where he worked 15 years, including five in his current position and five as the city’s finance director. He holds a degree in political science from Brigham Young University and a Masters of Public Administration from BYU’s Marriott School of Management.

Yankton, South Dakota (population 14,454): The City of Yankton announced Nov. 1 that the current city manager of Canton will take that position here beginning Jan. 2, according to the Yankton Daily Press & Dakotan. Amy Nelson, 35, has been the city manager of the southeast South Dakota community of approximately 3,000 residents for the past four years. The announcement of Yankton’s first female city manager came during a media conference at City Hall Thursday with many city department heads in attendance. Nelson is a native of Ortonville, Minn., has a bachelor’s degree from Minnesota State University-Moorhead and a master’s degree from Minnesota State University-Mankato. She has worked in a couple states in positions that include downtown development director and a senior community planner prior to becoming the city manager of Canton. Mayor Nancy Wenande cited Nelson’s background in both the private and public sectors as reasons for her selection.

Hendersonville, North Carolina (population 13,137): Bo Ferguson is resigning as Hendersonville’s city manager at the end of the year to take a position as deputy city manager over operations in Durham, according to the Times-News. Ferguson will join City Manager Tom Bonfield at the helm in Durham on Jan. 7. Ferguson is set to lead the city’s Operations Team, a group of departments tasked with delivering traditional governmental services that most directly impact residents on a day-to-day basis. Mayor Pro Tem Jeff Collis, who was on the council that interviewed and hired Ferguson, said the city will definitely miss him. Steve Caraker was a newly elected member of the council when he sat in on the final rounds of interviews to find a city manager five years ago. He said that Ferguson impressed him from the beginning. He remembered Ferguson even apologizing during the interview because he was taking notes to prepare for future questions. Ferguson commended City Council for its work. He added that he has also enjoyed working with city staff. Ferguson said he’s confident the council will find a city manager who represents those values and that Mayor Barbara Volk is currently exploring options for transitioning to Hendersonville’s next city manager. In Durham, Ferguson will oversee about two-thirds of the city’s workforce — 2,200 staff members. Ferguson has 16 years of experience in local government management. Prior to working for Hendersonville, he served as assistant town manager and finance officer for the town of Black Mountain; assistant to the city manager in the city of Rockville, Md.; and senior management analyst with the city of Greenbelt, Md. Ferguson will fill the deputy city manager chair left vacant by Theodore Vorhees, who left Durham to serve as city manager of Fayetteville in August.

Glades County, Florida (population 12,884): Commissioners in attendance at Monday’s Glades County Commission meeting included Dennis Griffin, Donna Storter, Paul Beck, Russell Echols and Tim Stanley, according to Southwest Florida Online. Commissioner Storter moved to terminate the employment of county manager Wendell Taylor without cause effective immediately. Motion carried 3-2 with Echols and Griffin dissenting. Complaints had been filed against Taylor, a retired USAF Colonel, by two Glades County employees accusing the county manager of bullying and threatening employees and of using profane language in front of them. Earl Cline, a maintenance tech filed a grievance in April 2012 saying “G.D. is used almost daily, taking the name of God in vain” and was “obscenely screaming ‘F–k Donna'” referring to Commissioner Storter. 911 Coordinator Terri Anascavage complained that Taylor came to her office three times saying “spies were watching”” her. She went to Commissioner Jones, and claimed Taylor then started retaliation and harassment against her. Commissioner Stanley led discussion at the commission meeting about temporary positioning other employees to cover the vacant county manager position. Stanley felt county employees should receive official written notice of the vacancy with direction for “chain of command”. County Attorney Pringle suggested until the Board can move via advertised agenda in public meeting to proceed to fill the county manager position, that county business can be handled as it has been in the past during county manager’s absence when on leave by Deputy County Manager Larry Hilton.

Shiloh, Illinois (population 12,651): The Village Board has hired a Michigan man with more than 30 years of municipal experience as its first village administrator, according to the Belleville News Democrat. John Marquart of Iron Mountain, Mich., will start work in Shiloh on Dec. 10 and will oversee the day-to-day operations of the village. According to the employment agreement, Marquart’s initial term will be five months ending May 6, 2013. Thereafter, the term of village administrator will be four years to run concurrent with the term of the mayor. Marquart will earn a salary of 78,000 annually plus benefits with increases in compensation considered on an annual basis, and the village will cover Marquart’s moving expenses at a cost of 3,200. Marquart previously served as city administrator in Oak Forest, Ill., and as city manager in Iron Mountain, Mich. He has also held similar positions in several other cities in Illinois and Pennsylvania. In addition, he has experience in economic development after several years as the executive director of the Marinette County Association for Business and Industry in Wisconsin. Marquart holds a master’s degree in political science/public administration from Western Illinois University and has been an International City/County Management Association credentialed manager.

South Miami, Florida (population 11,657): South Miami commissioners fired their fourth city manager since 2009 during a contentious meeting Nov. 9, according to The Miami Herald. Outgoing City Manager Hector Mirabile said Friday that his last year working for South Miami was far worse than being under daily attack as a lieutenant colonel in Ramadi, Iraq, where he was stationed in 2009. With tears in his eyes and a lump in his throat, Mirabile told the crowd at the commission meeting that he was proud of his team and all that they had accomplished during the two years in the city. Some city employees, including South Miami’s director of human resources LaTasha M. Nickle, walked out of the meeting crying. Others filed up into his office to hug him. Commissioners voted 3-2 to fire Mirabile without cause. South Miami Mayor Philip Stoddard, a biology professor turned politician, led the effort after accusing Mirabile and “his friend,” South Miami Police Chief Orlando Martinez de Castro, of turning the city into a “hostile” place. Commissioners Bob Welsh and Walter Harris supported Stoddard’s effort. Vice Mayor Josh Liebman and Commissioner Valerie Newman dissented. The city charter entitles a manager fired without cause to a month’s salary and benefits as severance, but Mirabile’s contract stipulates that a firing without cause before Sept. 20, 2015, required the city to pay his full salary as a “consultant” with benefits for six months. Under the contract’s terms, Mirabile received $140,000 in salary, and benefits included a $150 cellphone and $650 car allowance each month, plus a monthly $680 for health insurance coverage. Mirabile also receives benefits from the city of Miami. Mirabile came to the city loaded with experience as a former Miami police major, Army National Guard veteran, and Miami’s interim director of community development and director of employee relations. He is also board chairman for the United Police Federal Credit Union, which represents police departments, including Miami, West Miami and the Miami-Dade County school district police. In 2010, Mirabile replaced former acting city manager Buford “Randy” Witt, a retired Air Force general and former Miami-Dade chief information officer. Witt had replaced interim city manager Roger M. Carlton, who took Ajibola Balogun’s place after he was fired in 2009. A year ago, commissioners extended Mirabile’s three-year contract to two more years. Before being fired, Witt chose Martinez de Castro as one of three finalists. Martinez de Castro, who worked in the Miami Police Department in the early 1980s with Mirabile, held several posts in South Miami, including public works director and assistant city manager before then-City Manager Maria Davis appointed him as police chief in October 2003. Martinez de Castro resigned in March 2006 and returned in 2010. One of Mirabile’s biggest accomplishments: He restructured the police pension plan and moved toward a defined-contribution plan. Commissioners named Kelly Barket as the acting city manager, while they look for an interim manager.

Sonoma, California (population 10,648): City Manager Linda Kelly is leaving Sonoma to accept the position of town manager of Windsor, effective Dec. 13, according to the Sonoma News. Kelly has served as the city manager of Sonoma since January 2008, and has worked with the City Council and staff in managing through the recession, the dissolution of the city’s redevelopment agency and the budget challenges that have impacted the Sonoma economy. Kelly, reached by phone Wednesday night, said her decision had nothing to do with job satisfaction in Sonoma. Kelly explained that the opportunity to apply for the Windsor job came up when longtime Town Manager Matt Mullan announced his retirement. Like Sonoma, Windsor has a five-person City Council, with a rotating mayor and a fulltime town manager. Kelly said she will assume her new job in mid-December in order to have some overlap with Mullan, who leaves at the end of the year.

Sonoma City Council announced Monday night that current Assistant City Manager Carol Giovanatto will be the next city manager, effective Dec. 13, according to the SonomaPatch. The appointment is subject to formal adoption of an employment agreement at the council’s next regular meeting Dec. 3. Giovanatto has been with the City for 11 years. She also currently serves as Administrative Services Director, City Treasurer and head of the Finance Department. She will replace current City Manager Linda Kelly who was recently appointed as the Town Manager of Windsor. The council announced its appointment after a closed session at its Monday meeting, according to a news release.

Molalla, Oregon (population 8,108): Ellen Barnes will leave after a year as Molalla city manager under a “mutual agreement” approved at a special session of the Molalla City Council, according to The Oregonian. Barnes will remain in City Hall for 30 days or until the city chooses an interim city manager, for which they will begin searching immediately. She will receive severance pay totaling $21,000 over the next three months, unless she accepts a job within that time period. The decision came after a 75-minute executive session, in which the council, city attorney and Barnes discussed private details of the agreement. About ten residents attended the public meeting afterward, which began 45 minutes late and lasted a few minutes. Councilor Jim Needham, a candidate for mayor, dissented in the 5-1 council vote. Mayor Mike Clarke declined to elaborate on what led to the split. Barnes started as city manager last October. She moved to Molalla with her husband and two daughters from Gold Beach, where she served as city administrator. Shortly after she arrived, she uncovered a financial mess that was years in the making, brought in a forensic auditor to help sort through the books, and began making cuts to keep Molalla from ending the year $400,000 in the red. Those cuts included four layoffs, which she said added stress among the remaining city staff. In a statement released Tuesday night, the city thanked Barnes for her leadership and for “professionally and ably” assisting the city through its financial issues. Barnes said the year has been a challenging one. She said “philosophical disagreements” contributed to her departure. She said the changes she initiated in City Hall to balance the budget created a “culture shock” for council and staff. Needham, the only council member to oppose tonight’s decision, called the meeting “deplorable.” After the brief public meeting, Molalla residents lingered with unanswered questions about Barnes’ departure.

Globe, Arizona (population 7,532): Brent Billingsley of Maricopa was chosen as City Manager by a confident Globe City Council on Nov. 8, according to the Copper Country News. The move will be formally adopted at the regular meeting on Nov. 19, and Billingsley will begin work on Jan. 2, 2013. The League of Arizona Cities and Governments had supplied 60 impressive candidates, and the Council interviewed the top 10, a lengthy process. Billingsley, 37, showed both experience and youthful energy, and Acting Manager Cynthia Seelhammer had declared him a hard worker. Billingsley has directed the Development Service and the Transportation Office for the City of Maricopa. He was a project manager for an engineering firm and Transportation Planner for Pinal County. He held two leadership offices in CAAG. A graduate of NAU, he majored in Public Planning/Civil Engineering.

Columbiana, Ohio (population 6,384): Not only is the city losing its manager, but his backup is also retiring after 18 years, according to the Morning Journal News. Service Director Jay Groner, who was appointed to the position by City Manager Keith Chamberlin in 1994, has announced he is retiring after more than 40 years of working in Columbiana. Groner told city officials of his intention to retire after Chamberlin announced he was leaving the position he has held the last 20 years. Both said their decisions were based solely on changes to the Ohio Public Employee Retirement System (PERS). The changes were signed into law by Gov. John Kasich and take effect Jan. 7, 2013. They increase employee contributions, compute new final average salaries, require longer service and reduce cost-of-living adjustments. A September article in the Columbus Dispatch said the changes are to ensure that the pension systems can meet the state requirement that their unfunded liabilities be paid off within 30 years. Groner and Chamberlin both said it makes no financial sense for them to remain in the positions after the changes take effect. Groner’ first job was with the park, and over the years he has worked in other departments, including serving as cemetery superintendent 15 years. He doesn’t intend to be rehired by the city after his retirement although he does intend to continue working in some capacity. He and Chamberlin will both be leaving on Dec. 31, and Chamberlin said he will not appoint the new service director. That will be a task for the new city manager. Mayor David Spatholt said he, Councilman Bob Bieshelt and council clerk Deann Davis are getting together to come up with minimum requirements for the city manager position. The job has not formally been posted as open but it will be advertised soon, he added. Councilman Bryan Blakeman said 12 people submitted input through the city’s website, its Facebook page and his own personal website regarding the attributes the next manager should possess. He also said that during the closed door meetings council has held to discuss the position they are all “on the same page” regarding the type of person who should be hired. Chamberlin and Groner are making $86,000 and $65,000 a year, respectively.

Marion, Virginia (population 5,968): After more than 12 years of serving Marion as its manager, John Clark is planning to retire in early 2013, according to SWVA Today. The town has begun the process of advertising with the Virginia Municipal League in its electronic newsletter and on its website for applications. The job description and an application are also available on the town’s website, http://www.marionva.org. Applications are due by 3 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6. The ad strives to describe the tasks before potential candidates. Candidates are asked to possess a bachelor’s degree with a minimum of three years experience. A master’s degree in public administration, business administration, law, engineering or related fields is preferred. Salary is dependent upon qualifications. Clark, a native of the Broadford community, graduated from Rich Valley High School and holds a bachelor’s degree from Virginia Tech. He joined Marion’s staff in November 2000 after serving four years as the town manager of Saltville. He had previously served nine years as the town manager of Chilhowie and held the same post for the towns of Tazewell and Independence. He had also worked in public administration with the Mt. Rogers Planning District Commission. When he was offered the Marion position, Clark said it had been a long-term personal goal to return as the town manager after his first job, which was a temporary position with the town of Marion.

Stone Mountain, Georgia (population 5,802): The Stone Mountain City Council finalized the firing of City Manager Barry Amos in a resolution at a special called meeting Monday night, according to the StoneMountain-LithoniaPatch. Amos was suspended from office in a preliminary resolution by the council two weeks ago for “failure to communicate in a reliable and consistent manner,” as Mayor Pat Wheeler said at both meetings. Amos had five days to file a petition for a hearing after the first resolution, but he did not do so, Wheeler said.  Council members declined to discuss in detail the reason for Amos’ firing, but member Steve Higgins said the council had about eight or 10 examples, some having to do with communication with city staff, including the police department. Amos’ removal was effective immediately with the vote. Former Mayor Gary Peet is serving as interim city manager for six months. Amos was not present at the meeting and couldn’t be reached for comment.

Cherryville, North Carolina (population 5,760): Lowell City Manager Ben Blackburn will become the new manager in Cherryville, where he grew up, according to WCNC. Cherryville Mayor Bob Austell said on Wednesday local leaders were delighted that Blackburn, who was Cherryville’s city manager in 2000-02, had accepted the job offer in a place recently shaken by scandals. Suspicion of credit-card misuse led to the resignation or retirement of two long-time Cherryville employees; a former city manager was fired; the FBI filed criminal charges against three police officers; and the police chief and a captain were suspended. Investigations of the City Hall and police department are ongoing. Meanwhile, Cherryville Fire Chief Jeff Cash has been serving as acting city manager. Austell thinks Blackburn will help the city regain public trust. Blackburn begins his new job on Dec. 1 at a salary of $72,000, Austell said. Blackburn, 52, is a 1985 graduate of Appalachian State University with a bachelor’s degree in political science and town and county management. He’s also taken post-graduate public administration courses at Appalachian. He worked two years in the Watauga County tax collector’s office and eight years in the district attorney’s office in Boone as a victim/witness coordinator. From 1994 until 2000, Blackburn was Cherryville’s planning director. As Lowell city manager, he’s proud of the progress made in downtown revitalization, the creation of a merchants association and farmers market. He also notes sidewalk improvements as a major accomplishment. Leaving Lowell, population 3,600 and just across Gaston County from Cherryville, was a tough decision because “it’s a wonderful town,” Blackburn said. While he knows Cherryville is facing some problems, Blackburn hopes “I can be able to assist them and make it a better town.” Lowell Mayor Judy Horne said Blackburn has done “an excellent” job during his 10 ½ years there.

Jaffrey, New Hampshire (population 5,457): Town officials have started a search to find a new town manager, according to the Sentinel Source. Michael J. Hartman, town manager for the past five years, has accepted a similar position in Stoughton, Mass. Hartman was offered the Massachusetts job in September, and previously said he was considering taking it because it’s closer to his residence in Canton, Mass., a town with a population of nearly 30,000. While Hartman has an apartment in Jaffrey during the week, he commutes back to Massachusetts on the weekends. Hartman was on vacation Wednesday and could not be reached for comment. His last day is Dec. 14, Selectmen Chairwoman Jeanne LaBrie said. A search committee for his replacement will consist of five people, including town employees and Jaffrey residents, LaBrie said. Town officials will also be hiring a consulting firm to help them post the job ad and sift through candidates’ resumes. LaBrie did not know how much officials will spend to hire the firm. Ideally, Jaffrey, a town with a population of a bit more than 5,000, will have a new manager within three months, LaBrie said. Until then, Department of Public Works Director Randy Heglin will act as interim town manager. Heglin performed that role in 2006 when then-town manager Jonathan Sistare was called for military service. The town hired Hartman in 2007. LaBrie did not know how much Hartman will be making at his new job, but said it’s considerably more than Jaffrey can give him. Before coming to Jaffrey, Hartman was a town administrator in both Wareham and Medway, Mass. LaBrie said she understands why Hartman has accepted the new Massachusetts position, but the town will miss him.

High Springs, Florida (population 5,350): The High Springs City Commission ranked Edwin Booth as their top city manager candidate and agreed to offer him the position, contingent on an acceptable background check, during the regular commission meeting held on Thursday, Oct. 25, according to Alachua County Today. While Scott Lippman was chosen by all five commissioners, Booth was the only one to be ranked number one by the majority of the commission. All five candidates interviewed during the Monday, Oct. 22 meeting scored well. But Lippman’s inability to relocate to High Springs was concerning to Mayor Dean Davis and Commissioner Sue Weller, who said they ranked him lower for that reason.  Booth, who presently lives in South Carolina, indicated his willingness to relocate to the area if he selected by the commission. Following the ranking, Commissioner Weller moved and Vice-Mayor Bob Barnas seconded a motion to offer Booth the position as part of the next step in the hiring process; once again stressing the offer would be contingent on an acceptable background check. Following discussion about the method and cost of conducting the background check, the commission directed City Attorney Scott Walker to have his firm vet the candidate. Negotiating a salary agreement was discussed, but was not assigned. Contingent upon successful negotiations, it is anticipated that Walker will draw up a detailed agreement stipulating the terms and length of the contract for both parties to approve. As reported in the Oct. 25 edition of Alachua County Today, Booth holds a BS in Management from Columbia College, a MA in Public Administration from Webster University, a MS in Military Science from Command & General Staff College.  He is a retired U.S. Army Colonel with more than 20 years experience in all phases of utility management, police, fire and rescue experience, budget planning and preparation, master planning, economic development and staff management.  He also has had extensive experience in zoning and planning issues and served on the Board of the East Central Florida Regional Planning Council for three years. More recently, Booth has been the Town Administrator for Surfside Beach, SC.  Previously he served as the Town Administrator for Malabar, Fla., the City Manager in Ayden, NC, Commander, Dugway Proving Ground, UT, with 1,200 housing units under military control, City Manager, West Point, NE and Community Manager Fulda Military Community, with 1,800 housing units under military control.

Perry, Oklahoma (population 5,126): Mary Rupp worked for the city of Stillwater for 35 years. She started Nov. 1 as the city manager of Perry, according to the Stillwater NewsPress. She was first a secretary for the city manager and then an assistant city manager in Stillwater. When she left the city in February 2011, her title was deputy city manager. Rupp said the position was similiar to being an assistant, but with more direct supervision. Rupp said the city reorganized and eliminated her position. She said in recognition of her service with the city, she was given a separation agreement where she is paid through Dec. 31. She also will remain on Stillwater’s health insurance plan until Jan. 1, 2014. Part of her employment agreement with the city of Perry is that the money the city would be paying for her health insurance will be added to her base pay. She said her base pay is $80,000 a year and the value Perry officials put on paying her insurance is $10,000 a year. After Jan 1, 2014, Rupp will enroll in the city of Perry’s health insurance plan and not receive the extra stipend. Sherry Fletcher, director of marketing and public relations for the city of  Stillwater, said representatives of Stillwater could not comment on a former employee’s health insurance plan. Stillwater City Clerk Cindy Pollard said Rupp’s employment was from July 6, 1976 to December 31, 2011. Rupp said she lived all her adult life in Perry after moving from northeast Kansas. She graduated from Kansas State University with a degree in education with a business speciality. Her first job was teaching in Kansas schools. She moved to Perry with her husband who is from Perry. She has two adult sons and five grandchildren. She worked at Oklahoma State University for a year before starting with the city of Stillwater. She became assistant city manager in 1987 and was made deputy city manager shortly after Dan Galloway was hired as Stillwater’s city manager in 2005. Rupp said when she left the City of Stillwater she was not ready to retire. Stillwater gave her the opportunity to learn and grow, she said. Rupp, 60, said standard retirement age of 66 is getting closer. Rupp said Perry city manager was a natural fit for her. She said Perry changed to a council/manager form of government about seven years ago.

Milton, New Hampshire (population  4,598): Town Administrator Tony Mincu resigned Friday, effective immediately, and selectmen will soon begin the search to replace him, according to Foster’s Daily Democrat. Mincu has served the town as a town administrator since 2010. In his letter of resignation, submitted Friday, he stated he wanted to further his career, said Selectman Bob Bridges. He said that for the past two weeks or so, Mincu has been talking about getting back into the legal field. Mincu previously has worked as an attorney, said Bridges. While working with the town Mincu had been receiving a salary of $1,320 per week. Initially, he had a one-year employment contract with the town, but in 2011 selectmen extended his contract for three years, to expire in 2014. While there was a financial package given him upon his resignation, Bridges said he would not give details on what that package included. After being hired by the town in 2010, Mincu told Foster’s that he was excited about the job in Milton and he looked forward to the challenge of straightening out the town’s financial situation. Previously, he worked as a town administrator for Farmington, but his position there ended in June 2010 for unknown reasons. Milton selectmen will soon be meeting with representatives from the town’s insurance company, which will provide resources to help search for a new town administrator. The scope of the search has not yet been determined, said Bridges. Until a new town administrator is found, Bridges will be overseeing the day-to-day operations at the Town Hall. The other two Selectmen, Tom Gray and Bob Srnec, will take on some administrative duties if needed, said Bridges. Selectmen officially accepted Mincu’s resignation during a special meeting.

Sykesville, Maryland (population 4,436): Sykesville’s new town manager began Nov. 13, the day of the town’s first November meeting, according to the Carroll County Times. Dawn Ashbacher was one of three candidates selected to interview with the town council in a September visit to Sykesville. Ashbacher’s previous experience is primarily in Virginia, with more than seven years of government experience, according to a release from the town of Sykesville. Ashbacher previously worked as Assistant to the City Manager in Winchester, Va., and Assistant Director of the Planning Commission and a budget analyst for Fairfax County. Sykesville hired an outside firm in order to find candidates from across the nation. In a previous interview, Ashbacher said she visited the town before applying, and was impressed with the town. Former Sykesville town manager Matt Candland left after more than 17 years with the town in July. Police chief John Williams has been acting as interim town manager and police chief since July.

North Wilkesboro, North Carolina (population 4,245): Larry South, an Ashe County native and town manager of Hillsville, Va., for almost 19 years, was unanimously chosen Nov. 8 by the North Wilkesboro town board as the new manager, according to the Wilkes Journal-Patriot. South has accepted the position and will begin here Monday, Dec. 3, after finding a residence in the town. His wife and children plan to remain in Hillsville for the remainder of the school year. North Wilkesboro Mayor Robert Johnson said South has agreed to a starting salary of $83,116, which is higher than the advertised starting salary of $75,000 for the position but lower than the $87,000 that the town was paying former Town Manager Hank Perkins when he announced his resignation in June. Perkins resigned to accept the position as town manager in Lewisville. Former Wilkes County Manager Cecil Wood has served as the town’s interim manager since July 6. South, who had served for 18 years, 10 months as Hillsville town manager without a contract, resigned along with Police Chief Steve Williams following a closed session at the conclusion of a Hillsville town council meeting this past summer. His last day was June 29. South said he grew up in Glendale Springs, and his parents, Glen and Vilena South, live on the New River in Ashe. South graduated from Appalachian State with a bachelor’s of science degree with a major in business administration and a minor in political science. He served as Ashe County manager for four years and later worked in Raleigh for the Division of Environment, Health and Natural Resources for 18 months before succeeding former Wilkes County Manager John Barber as the Davie County manager for 3½ years. From Davie, he moved to Hillsville. South has two daughters from a previous marriage who still live in Ashe. He and his wife, Shelia, have two daughters, Savannah 15, and Mallory, 10. Bert Hall made the motion to hire South. South is 56. Commissioner Bart Hayes thanked Wood for serving as interim manager.

Basalt, Colorado (population 3,857): The new town manager of Basalt said Tuesday that he accepted the position because of the vast potential of the town and the people he met during a four-day visit in September, according to The Aspen Times. Mike Scanlon is currently the city administrator of Mission, Kan., a town of 9,300 people near Kansas City. He was offered a contract for the Basalt post in late October by the Town Council and accepted. He will start in early December. Scanlon, 51, and his wife, Kelly, have two grown daughters, Katie, 26, and Megan, 21. He is an avid cyclist. Scanlon joked that Basalt and its wonderful Rocky Mountain environment hold a lot of appeal for a guy from eastern Kansas. Many of the other applicants for the manager’s post came from Colorado and surrounding states, so they already had a leg up on him when it came to the outdoor lifestyle. In addition to the alluring outdoor lifestyle, Scanlon said he was impressed with the people he met inside and outside government in Basalt. He was treated well at Café Bernard, the parish at St. Vincent Catholic Church welcomed him, he was impressed with the way residents came together to improve the deck of the 7-Eleven pedestrian bridge, the Basalt Regional Library staff was professional and polite, and the town staff and Town Council members put him at ease. The council members might not always agree, he said, but they all work toward the best interests of Basalt. Scanlon has served in government for nearly 30 years. He was appointed to his current position in Mission in August 2003. He manages the city’s day-to-day operations and implements the policies set by the council. He oversees 70 city staff employees, though the city’s operation of a recreation center and department boosts the worker count to 125 to 130 full-time equivalents. He said he is proud of what his team has accomplished in Mission. It probably has more of a “Colorado feel” than some towns in Colorado, he said. While working with younger folks entering government service, Scanlon said he stresses to them that pay isn’t the most important factor for a good job and that location isn’t necessarily critical. The most important quality is finding people passionate about their place. Scanlon said he has a passion for getting done what the community wants done. That’s accomplished by getting community members involved in “visioning” and then working with the elected officials to set a course and execute that vision. He said he’s not afraid to get his hands dirty by participating in the work of a town government. But he also feels he has a knack for the big picture — imagining a place three or four generations down the road. He won’t have a lack of projects to work on when he arrives in Basalt. The Town Council and Planning Commission have started review of the Pan and Fork Mobile Home Park redevelopment. The proposal includes mixed uses of commercial and residential space and a Hyatt Place Hotel. A nonprofit campus is also in the mix. One of the biggest challenges will be finding replacement housing for the 38 individuals and families living at the mobile-home park. The town is also in the beginning stages of reviewing a continuing-care community proposed by Aspen Valley Medical Foundation in the South Side neighborhood. Scanlon said his excitement over Basalt’s future played a role in his decision to accept the job. He said former Basalt Town Manager Bill Kane expressed that rosy outlook better than he could. While meeting with the six candidates vying to be his successor, Kane said if Basalt was selling stock, he’d recommend buying. Scanlon is buying. He and the council negotiated a contract that will pay him $125,000 plus provide a housing allowance for one year.

Quartzite, Arizona (population 3,677): The Quartzsite Town Council has voted to dismiss Town Manager Alexandra Taft, according to the Parker Pioneer. The 6 to 1 vote came following an executive session at the council’s Nov. 13 meeting. Taft had been on administrative leave since Aug. 28. No explanation was given for the leave or the dismissal. The only “no” vote came from Councilwoman Patricia Workman. Taft is one of three top officials in the town who have been dismissed in the last month. Assistant Town Manager Al Johnson and Town Attorney Martin Brannan were both dismissed in late October. The action item to dismiss Taft was placed on the agenda by Interim Town Manager Laura Bruno. Prior to the vote, Councilman Mark Orgeron motioned to have several items placed by Workman and Mayor Ed Foster removed from the agenda. These included an item from Workman seeking to dismiss Bruno and reinstating Taft. As part of the discussion of Orgeron’s motion, Workman said she believed having Bruno placing the agenda item to have Taft dismissed constituted a conflict of interest under Arizona Revised Statutes 39-501 and 511. The other items Orgeron motioned to have removed from the agenda included a resolution from Workman to have the council nominate and approve two members to serve as contact persons with the Arizona Municipal Risk Retention Pool on the town’s insurance. The resolution states these members would also serve as contacts with the League of Arizona Cities and Towns, and that the town manager would provide these members with all necessary resources, information and quotes regarding insurance. The items Foster placed included action items regarding the times for regular council meetings, modifications to the town code regarding the bidding process, restoring “Call to the Public” to the council meetings, changing the duties of the town attorney, and discussion and possible action on the town manager’s position. Orgeron told the council he wanted these items removed because he had been in contact with the municipal risk pool, and they had told him the town’s continued factional fighting was not helping things in terms of having the town’s insurance restored. The council approved Orgeron’s motion to have these items removed. In another matter, Bruno reported the town had been in contact with an insurance broker who specialized in hard-to-place municipalities. She said they would be receiving quotes from 15 insurance companies. Bruno gave a brief history of what led up to the risk retention pool deciding to discontinue the town’s coverage. The pool informed the Town of their consideration of canceling the town’s insurance in September unless certain conditions were met. In early October, the pool decided to cancel the insurance. Bruno said the primary reason for the cancellation was the level of litigation against the town, much of it due to the factional fighting. She said 25 lawsuits had been filed against the town in 2011 and 2012, and 21 of those were unsettled. Bruno said some currently vacant positions would not be filled due to an expected increase in the town’s insurance costs. These positions included Assistant Town Manager and Assistant Town Clerk.

Monticello, Georgia (population 2,657): Monticello City Council members welcomed Tim Sweezey, the new city manager, at their regular business meeting November 13, according to The Monticello News. This was Mr. Sweezey’s first official business meeting although he has been in Monticello for about three weeks, and hit the ground running. Council members had dinner with Mr. Sweezey upon his arrival. Mr. Sweezey said that when he took the job, he met with department heads both independently and collaboratively and there was an overwhelming majority that said there was a distinct lack of leadership. That being corrected is one direction that Mr. Sweezey is improving. Mr. Sweezey also told the council that he met with Robert Jordan, the city engineer. He said that they are working on the outlined projects, including the laptop issue in the police cars. Mr. Sweezey said that he and Chief Bobby Norris had to collaborate and be sure that the grant for these laptops was 100 percent refundable, but that was the goal. He then told the council that he has an open door policy and believes in the chain of command. In meetings he wants the employee and the supervisor.

New Durham, New Hampshire (population 2,638): After stepping down from her post as town administrator, Alison Webb has taken a position with the City of Dover and Durham resident Jeremy Bourgeois has stepped in to take her place at Town Hall, according to Foster’s Daily Democrat. Bourgeois, 25, told Foster’s he moved to Durham and subsequently had to step out of the running for the District 8 state representative race this year, after getting the job to serve as New Durham’s town administrator. He started on Oct. 2 and also holds a part-time position as a housing director for a University of New Hampshire (UNH) fraternity. Bourgeois said New Durham is a jumping-off point for his hopeful lifetime career in municipal work. A Rochester native, Bourgeois graduated from Spaulding High School in 2005 before pursuing an associate degree at UNH in community leadership. He received a political science bachelor’s degree in 2009 and then shortly after served in a fellowship with the Municipal Management Association of New Hampshire. The program is designed around the association’s partnership with UNH and the New Hampshire Local Government Center. Bourgeois graduated with a master’s degree in public administration in December 2011. In that time, he shadowed the Derry town administrator in the summer of 2011, as well, learning the ropes of an administrator’s post. For the future, he said he hopes to serve as a town or city manager and may even dabble in the political field. Bourgeois noted Webb was well respected by the community during her time in New Durham. She is now serving in the human resources department in the City of Dover. He added a major goal for the future of the town is the renovation of the Town Hall building, including repairs to the exterior and putting in new restrooms, as well as making the building compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Laurel Park, North Carolina (population 2,180): Laurel Park Town Manager Jim Ball has told the town council that he will be retiring from his position on Dec. 1, 2013, according to WHKP. Ball made the announcement to allow sufficient time for the town to find a new manager. Ball has served as town manager for more than 15 years.

Winnebago, Minnesota (population 1,437): A former Winnebago Council member will be stepping up as the new City Administrator, according to the Fairbault County Register. The city hired Chris Ziegler at a starting salary of $52,000. He will officially begin on Monday, Dec. 3. Ziegler had announced at the July 10 council meeting that he would not be seeking re-election to the council at the beginning of next year. However, when former Winnebago City Administrator Austin Bleess resigned from the position in October, Ziegler announced he was going to leave the council even sooner than anticipated. It was his desire to apply for the City Administrator position so he resigned as a council member in order for his application to be considered. The council selected Ziegler to be interviewed as one of the top six candidates out of 11 applicants. From there he was chosen as one of the three finalists and was interviewed on Nov. 1. He was offered the position after the second round of interviews were conducted at the special meeting. It was announced on that day they would extend the offer to Ziegler. He signed his contract for employment between himself and the city on Tuesday, Nov. 6. Wendell Sande, of South Central Service Cooperative and current interim administrator for the city of Winnebago, has been handling the duties in the office for the time being. Ziegler lives in Winnebago and is the director of business management for Human Services of Faribault and Martin counties. He has experience working in the city office and with much of the computer software the city of Winnebago uses for budgets and payroll. As stated in his interview, Ziegler is confident and ready to be working with the current city employees.

Lake Park, Iowa (popuation 1,105): City leaders in Lake Park will be conducting their second administrator search in less than a year, according to the Dickinson County News. City Administrator George McGuire is leaving the position effective Dec. 30. The city was accepting applications through Nov. 19 for the opening. McGuire said the decision didn’t come easily. McGuire put a number of projects into motion upon his arrival. He helped initiate and break ground on the new housing development on the southwest potion of town. Plans for a new apartment complex are planned this spring. McGuire also worked on a partnership with the school district to construct a concession stand in the parks. McGuire also said he has been working with the city to incorporate new ways to attract potential businesses to the area. Lake Park Mayor John Engel said he wasn’t surprised with McGuire’s decision. The city of Lake Park has put out a number of calls for applicants. They are looking for someone who has a vast knowledge of government operations, facilities and other policies and budgets necessary to the city. The candidate will be able to keep both the mayor and city council informed of anything concerning the city.

East Hampton Village, New York (population 1,083): Larry Cantwell, the East Hampton Village administrator, will retire in 2013, according to The East Hampton Star.  Mr. Cantwell served on the East Hampton Town Board for five and a half years, from 1977 to 1982, and made an unsuccessful bid for supervisor against the Republican incumbent, Mary Fallon, in 1981. He has since served on the town planning board and the East Hampton Housing Authority. But he first entered town politics in 1975, when at age 25 he was elected bay constable, becoming the town’s youngest elected official and “the first Democrat elected to that position in 42 years,” he said. His final year on the town board was a fractious one. Just after the 1981 election, he said, Republicans announced plans to abolish the Planning Department and hire a consultant instead. At the time, there was still a Democratic majority on the board, which opposed the move. In the end, the Planning Department was dissolved and a consultant was hired. Mr. Cantwell resigned as councilman the following year to become East Hampton Village’s clerk-treasurer. (After five years on the job, his duties were expanded and he became the village administrator.) Still, Mr. Cantwell remembers Town Hall then as a more civil place than it seems to be today. His position with the village is an appointed one, with a term that runs concurrent with that of the mayor, but in his 30 years on the job, the village has had only three mayors. Mayor Paul F. Rickenbach Jr. has worked with Mr. Cantwell throughout his 20-year tenure. When the village administrator told the board last week of his plans to retire in June or July of 2013, “you could hear a pin drop,” Mayor Rickenbach said at Friday’s village board meeting. Only one village board member, Elbert Edwards, has held his post longer than Mr. Cantwell. Barbara Borsack, the deputy mayor, said Mr. Cantwell’s departure would be “a sad day . . . I’m sorry to see it coming.” And Richard Lawler, a board member who serves as village police commissioner, praised Mr. Cantwell for his dedication and professionalism. Mr. Cantwell thanked the village board on Friday for “instilling me with the confidence it takes to do my job.” He also praised the village employees, “from the beach personnel to the firemen — they are the real heroes.” The village has started taking applications to replace Mr. Cantwell, who will, Ms. Borsack said, leave big shoes to fill. Résumés are to be sent to Village Hall, attention Larry Cantwell. He hopes that with a nine-month lead, he will be able to help make the transition to a new village administrator as smooth as possible. Zachary Cohen, who lost to Supervisor Bill Wilkinson by just 15 votes in 2011, has been presumed to be the Democrats’ choice for the top of the ticket in 2013. He had only good things to say about Mr. Cantwell. In recent local election years, many have suggested that East Hampton Town needs a professional town manager similar to a village administrator. Mr. Cantwell thinks there’s “merit” to this, especially because it would help provide continuity from supervisor to supervisor. Mr. Wilkinson, a Republican, has not indicated whether he plans to run again in 2013, but County Legislator Jay Schneiderman, a former supervisor who ran on the Republican ticket but has since become an Independence Party member, has said he wants to try again for his old job.

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Transitions: Santa Clarita, Ventura, and Chico, California and more

Ken Pulskamp

Ken Pulskamp

Santa Clarita, California (population 176,320): Ken Pulskamp, who helped shape the city of Santa Clarita in its infancy and later served a decade as city manager, announced Monday he will retire in December from his $251,000-a-year job, according to the Contra Costa Times. Pulskamp outlined his plans in a three-page letter to Mayor Frank Ferry and the City Council in which he lauded the commitment of community leaders and public officials. Pulskamp was recruited in 1988 as the No. 2 to then-City Manager George Caravalho, for whom he’d worked in Bakersfield. Santa Clarita had incorporated the year before, and the two collaborated in developing the new city’s roads, trails, parks and transportation systems, along with a municipal government. Pulskamp’s letter noted that Santa Clarita has had to deal with 11 federally declared disasters, most notably the 1994 Northridge Earthquake. In a phone interview, Pulskamp expressed pride in how city leaders responded to the 6.7-magnitude temblor. The City Council promoted Pulskamp in 2003, after Caravalho took a job in Riverside. Pulskamp was honored last year by the League of California Cities, and he was also the only city manager to serve on the National Homeland Security Consortium, a public-private task force. Retiring at age 56 will allow Pulskamp to spend more time with his family and pursue hobbies – activities that were previously overtaken by meetings at City Hall and throughout the community. However, he relishes the years spent in the public sector and said he hopes his successor has a similar experience.

Ventura, California (population 106,433): Rick Cole, Ventura’s city manager since 2004, will leave his job Sept. 15 after parting ways with the City Council, according to the Los Angeles Times. Cole came to Ventura after serving as city manager in Azusa and 12 years on Pasadena’s City Council. He was Pasadena’s mayor from 1992 to 1994. In Cole’s years as Ventura’s top appointed official, the city undertook a number of controversial measures. Parking meters were installed downtown and a popular library branch was shut. Officials enforced building and safety codes more stringently, but Cole’s critics said enforcement was arbitrary and unreasonable. Cole also guided the city’s government through the recession, eliminating nearly 100 city positions. In a statement, Mayor Mike Tracy, the city’s former police chief, praised Cole for “making the hard choices that have ensured that Ventura has lived within our means during tough economic times.” Cole offered to resign after receiving a negative performance review earlier this summer. He said he plans to stay in Ventura.

Chico, California (population 86,187): Regularly described as dedicated, Dave Burkland has meetings scheduled up until he leaves his third-floor office — and his position as city manager — at 5 p.m. Friday, according to the Chico Enterprise-Record. Burkland, 60, is retiring after five years as city manager and a total of 20 working for the city of Chico. At 5 p.m., he will head to a barbecue in his honor. Once Burkland has said his thanks and farewells, he plans to go on a road trip northwest with his wife, Joanne Reinhard. Brian Nakamura, who was Hemet’s city manager, will take over Chico’s top job. Anastacia Snyder, the executive director of Catalyst Domestic Violence Services, said Burkland was one of the nonprofit’s biggest advocates since it started and played a big role in getting a new facility built in 2010. Mayor Ann Schwab said she feels like she and Burkland complemented each other well, representing the city together. Schwab said Burkland is calm and approachable but he stands up for what is right. She said it has been reassuring to work with someone who doesn’t let their emotions get in the way of finding the best solution. As city manager, Burkland said he was proud he and staff presented the Chico City Council with a balanced budget during rough economic times. Burkland said one of the most challenging issues he faced during his career was medical marijuana, with the pressure from dispensaries, patients and the federal government. He said it was also difficult dealing with employee issues and the number of complaints from residents and visitors. Burkland said during his career at the city, he learned to not “overpromise,” to instead say he will try to do the best he can. Senior Councilman Scott Gruendl said he feels the city was lucky to have Burkland. Gruendl thinks Burkland’s expertise helped the city build a lot of low- and moderate-income housing bringing economic stimulus to Chico. He also thinks the good relationship Burkland had with employees paid off when almost all of the unions agreed to take salary and benefit cuts in order to close a deficit, Gruendl said. Though Burkland has had a number of job offers, he plans to take about six months to a year before deciding what his next career path will be, he said. Burkland will have more time to play volleyball, ride his offroad motorcycle, learn how to fly fish and more, he said. He said he is encouraged that he is seeing signs of economic recovery.

Troy, Michigan (population 80,980): After weeks of reviewing resumes and interviewing applicants for the Troy city manager’s job, the City Council needed just seven minutes to make a final decision Thursday, Mayor Janice Daniels said, according to the Detroit Free Press. Councilman Dave Henderson initially voted for Farmington City Manager Vincent Pastue, then changed his vote to show unanimous support for Kischnik, according to a recording of the meeting. Other finalists included Oakland Township Manager Jim Creech and Troy Director of Community and Economic Planning Mark Miller. Daniels called the choice of Kischnick “a wonderful fresh start,” on the heels of Troy being named one of the top 100 places to live in the country by CNN/Money magazine. If Kischnick accepts Troy’s offer, he will replace interim City Manager Mike Culpepper, who held the position following the resignation of John Szerlag in May.

Coon Rapids, Minnesota (population 61,476): Public Services Director Steve Gatlin has moved into the city manager position in Coon Rapids, a month after Matt Fulton’s resignation, according to the Star Tribune. Gatlin, 62, came to the city as public works director in 1998. Since 2005, he’s served as public services director, with responsibility for community development, engineering and public works. In an interview Friday, Gatlin said he’s committed to preserving and improving neighborhoods and to encouraging redevelopment along Coon Rapids Boulevard. In the coming months, he said, the north metro city of 63,000 likely will be considering Phase 2 development around the Coon Rapids Ice Arena, some iteration of the long-held community center concept. The city also will be completing its master plan for parks and recreation. Gatlin said the city is strengthened by the stability of its longtime residents, and the surprising small-town feel for such a large city. A strong infrastructure, he said, also has the city primed for redevelopment.

Jefferson County, West Virginia (population 53,498): During its meeting Thursday, the Jefferson County Commission unanimously voted to appoint Debbie Keyser to the position of county administrator, according to The Journal-News. Keyser had been serving as interim county administrator since late April after being hired as a part-time human resources consultant last year. Before coming to Jefferson County, Keyser worked as the HR director for a large private company and was involved in setting strategic goals and directions for the company. She said the transition from the private sector to the public sector has gone smoothly to this point. While the county still has to finalize Keyser’s job description, Jefferson County Commission President Patsy Noland expects the county administrator position to handle most HR duties the county has. It also was beneficial for the commission to be able to work with Keyser over the past months and see her perform in an interim capacity, Noland added. Keyser’s pay rate will be that of a “Grade A Step One” employee, or $97,764 per year, according to Noland. The County Commission previously advertised twice for applicants to fill the county administrator position vacated by Tim Boyde in January. Deputy County Administrator Sandy Slusher McDonald served as acting county administrator from Jan. 13 until Keyser’s appointment to the interim position.

Stanton, California (population 38,186): The choosing of a new city manager who is a familiar face is on the agenda for Tuesday’s meeting of the Stanton City Council, according to The Garden Grove Journal. In the wake of the resignation of Carol Jacobs as the city’s top executive effective Sept. 6, the council is expected to hire James “Jim” Box to fill that post. Box is the current assistant city manager and director of parks and recreation. Jacobs will become city manager of the Riverside County city of Eastvale. That city is located near Corona, was incorporated in 2010 and has a population of around 53,000 people, compared to Stanton’s 38,000. Stanton does not have its own police and fire departments, instead contracting with county agencies for those services.

Brentwood, Tennessee (population 37,163): For the past 22 years, Brentwood City Manager Mike Walker has led the city through multiple zoning, budgetary and infrastructure issues, according to The Tennessean. Come January, Walker will retire, he announced at Monday night’s City Commission meeting. He began work at Brentwood in May 1990, said City Recorder Debbie Hedgepath. A 1977 graduate of the University of Tennessee with a master’s degree in business administration, he came to Brentwood after fulfilling the role of temporary city manager for Oak Ridge. The Tennessee City Management Association named Walker Manager of the Year in 2005 and he served as chairman of the University of Tennessee Municipal Technical Advisory Service Advisory Committee this year. In a letter announcing his retirement, Walker said he’d leave the city manager position on Jan. 25. No one has been selected yet to fill his position, Hedgepath said. The year Walker arrived, Brentwood had a property tax increase but there has not been one since that time. Brentwood is among only 2 percent of local governments in the country to receive an Aaa rating from Moody’s Investors Service and AAA ratings from Standard and Poor’s, which makes the city attractive to investors and allows Brentwood to receive favorable interest rates.

Hobbs, New Mexico (population 34,122): Former Wilkes-Barre Administrator J.J. Murphy has landed a new job as city manager in Hobbs, N.M., according to The Citizens’ VoiceMurphy said he will leave Wilkes-Barre and move almost 2,000 miles away to New Mexico, where he will earn $140,000 a year. He will replace Eric Honeyfield, who retired in June. Murphy, 41, a married father of five daughters, said he plans to move to Hobbs right away to find housing. He said his children are his No. 1 priority and his family will move there after the school semester is over. Murphy said he was chosen following a national search with more than 50 candidates. Hobbs Mayor Sam Cobb did not return phone calls seeking comment Tuesday. Murphy said Hobbs is a similar city to Wilkes-Barre in some ways, such as its size. Hobbs has a population of about 43,000, while Wilkes-Barre has a population of more than 41,000, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Murphy served seven years as city administrator under Mayor Tom Leighton and two years as deputy administrator under former Mayor Tom McGroarty. He was the center of controversy on some city issues, such as being paid $300 an hour as a consultant for the Wilkes-Barre Parking Authority and recommending the city hire the Fox Rothschild law firm to put together proposals and oversee the process. One of the firm’s partners is his brother, Patrick Murphy. Murphy also faced criticism after the city spent more than $14,000 to install security systems at his home and in Leighton’s home. In February, state prosecutors threw out four private criminal complaints about the matter, and the state Attorney General’s Office determined that Leighton and Murphy would not face criminal charges. Murphy called the complaint a “campaign issue” during an election year and would not comment further. Murphy is a 1993 graduate of King’s College in Wilkes-Barre, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in political science. He earned his masters degree in public administration from Marywood University in Scranton in 1998. He served in the United States Air Force and was deployed to Africa in 2008 and Haiti in 2010. He continues to serve in the U.S. Air Force Reserves. He and his wife Colleen live in Wilkes-Barre with their five daughters, Katie, Erin, Emma, Ryan and Reese. Murphy’s accomplishments as city administrator include technological advances in city hall. He was project manager for a $3 million initiative to install more than 250 surveillance cameras throughout the city. The cameras have been used to catch criminals, Murphy said. He said he hopes the cameras will help bring closure to the family of hit-and-run victim Rebecca McCallick, who was killed July 24 on Hazle Street. Murphy also coordinated the Healing Field at Kirby Park in 2004, which consisted of more than 4,000 flags which honored people who died on Sept. 11, 2001, and military members who have died fighting since.

Winter Haven, Florida (population 33,874): Winter Haven City Manager Dale Smith announced Monday night that he will retire as city manager at the end of January, according to The Ledger. Smith, a 34-year city employee who has been city manager for about 2 1/2 years, recommended that Assistant City Manager Deric Feacher take his position, but he deferred to the commission to make its own decision. Smith’s announcement was met with a loud applause from commissioners, staff and others at the meeting. It is unclear Monday night when or how the process to hire a new city manager would begin. Mayor J.P. Powell said after the meeting that he would get with Smith to get the ball rolling. Powell lauded Smith for his leadership of the city during a time when falling housing prices have drastically cut the city’s revenue. Smith, 64, said after the meeting he looks forward to spending more time at a home he and his wife own in the Smoke Mountains and work on hot rods, specifically the 1965 Chevy Nova SS that Smith left a skid mark with when it was the first car to officially use the city’s new downtown parking garage. Smith told commissioners he recommended Feacher because of the time Feacher has served as assistant city manager. Feacher was promoted to the position in February after having held the title of assistant to the city manager. Feacher started his career with the city 10 years ago as the supervisor at the Winter Haven Recreation and Cultural Center. He has been the assistant to the city manager for about four years. Smith became city manager on Jan. 25, 2010, when a single motion accepted then city manager David Greene’s resignation and promoted Smith all at once. Smith, 61, was hired in 1978. He began his career with the city as director of engineering. He became the public works director in 1980. He served as interim city manager in 2000. In 2001, Smith became special projects manager and about 2004 was named assistant city manager.

Peachtree Corners, Georgia (population 31,704): The Mayor and City Council saved the best for last at Tuesday night’s Peachtree Corners City Council meeting with the announcement that a new City Manager had been named, according to the GwinnettPatch. Julian Jackson, the former City Manager for the City of Monroe has been tapped to lead Gwinnett’s newest city. Shortly after reconvening from a short executive session, Mayor Mike Mason made the announcement. Julian Jackson, a 14-year veteran with the City of Monroe, said he was delighted to be selected for the position. Jackson will officially begin on Oct. 1, 2012. The new City Manager will join Diana Wheeler, who was hired as the Community Development Director. Wheeler officially began her duties on Aug. 27.

Clermont, Florida (population 29,359): Clermont has hired its new City Manager — and he’s a familiar face, according to CFNEWS13. Darren Gray will leave his job as Lake County Manager to take over the top spot in Clermont beginning October 15. Gray was Clermont’s assistant city Manager until last year. Clermont’s City Council approved a package Tuesday night that will pay him $150,000 a year — similar to the pay he was receiving from the county. The city also changed its retirement agreement with outgoing City Manager Wayne Saunders. Saunders was set to retire in January and receive one year’s pay for consulting services. Now, he’ll retire after 27 years in October and be paid until May. Saunders announced his retirement after protests of his handling of the police department. The city’s police chief has since been suspended and the Council will meet Wednesday night to hire an independent consulting firm to investigate the police department.

Door County, Wisconsin (population 27,785): The Door County Board agreed with the Administrative Committee’s recommendation Tuesday officially hiring Maureen Murphy as the county’s new Administrator, according to the Door County Daily News. Murphy says she’s looking forward to getting started and meeting lots of people. Murphy will start work October 1st with an annual salary of about $87,000. She replaces former county administrator Michael Serpe in the position. Murphy comes to Door County from six years as village administrator in Slinger, WI.

Wentzville, Missouri (population 27,070): George Kolb, who has 40 years of city management experience around the country, has been picked as Wentzville’s new interim city administrator, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Kolb’s resume includes work as city manager for Wichita, Kan. Until earlier this year he was assistant city manager in Surprise, Ariz., a Phoenix suburb. Kolb will serve until the Board of Aldermen hires a new permanent administrator. Aldermen have been unable for the past year to decide on someone to succeed the former administrator, Dianna Wright. Since Wright left last August, Dennis Walsh, the assistant administrator and city finance director, has filled in as interim administrator along with  his regular duties. The hiring of Kolb will allow Walsh to focus more fully on his finance and budget work, according to a city news release. Kolb was hired through Interim Public Management LLC. Under a contract with the company approved by aldermen last week, the firm forwarded several candidates for the interim post and aldermen picked Kolb. Under the deal, the city will pay the company $3,100 per week plus business and lodging expenses and provide a city vehicle for use on city business. Kolb will be considered a city consultant. At its meeting last week, aldermen also hired another company, Mercer Group, to help find a permanent administrator.

Kent County, Maryland (population 20,197): The Kent County Commissioners have engaged Ernest A. Crofoot to serve in a dual capacity as Kent County Administrator and in-house County Attorney upon the retirement of County Administrator Susanne Hayman in December 2012, according to The Chestertown Spy. A graduate of the Johns Hopkins University (A.S., Accounting) and the University of Baltimore School of Law (J.D., cum laude, Heisler Honor Society, 1982), Mr. Crofoot started his legal career in Denton, Maryland, serving as law clerk to The Honorable Marvin H. Smith, Associate Judge, court of Appeals of Maryland (July 1982 – August 1983). Thereafter, until 1992, Mr. Crofoot practiced with two large Baltimore law firms, concentrating in tax, municipal finance, business, corporate and transactional matters. Following a brief time in solo practice, Mr. Crofoot was appointed in 1993 as County Attorney for Harford County, where he was responsible for all civil legal affairs of that jurisdiction. In November 1998, he joined the Montgomery County Attorney’s Office, where he was responsible for contract review, represented procurement and information technology departments, and served as legal counsel to the Montgomery County Revenue Authority. In June 2000, he served as General Counsel to the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, the water and wastewater utility serving Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties. From September 2002 to February 2005, Mr. Crofoot served as Chief Solicitor in the Baltimore City Department of Law, where he managed a number of significant matters, including renegotiation of a major cable franchise, claims against the City’s Police Department, and representation of certain boards and activities, including the Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts. In 2008, after four years of service as a partner in the law firm of Funk & Bolton, P.A., he was appointed in-house County Attorney for Caroline County, where he serves currently. Mr. Crofoot is admitted to practice law in Maryland, and in the United States District Court for the District of Maryland, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, the United States Supreme Court, and the U.S. Tax Court. He is a member of the Maryland State Bar Association and former Chair of its State and Local Government Section. He also served two years as the state representative for the International Municipal Lawyers Association. He is active in the Maryland Association of Counties and its County Civil Attorneys Affiliate. Mr. Crofoot presently serves as an Academy Advisor and ethics lecturer of the University of Maryland Institute for Governmental Service and Research in its Academy for Excellence in Local Governance. Current professional service also includes membership in the Peer Review Panel of the Maryland Attorney Grievance Commission. Mr. Crofoot is a former adjunct professor of law at the University of Baltimore Law School and at Villa Julie College (now Stevenson University). His public service has included extensive service for the non-profit Relay Children’s Center in BaltimoreCounty and the United Way of Caroline County.

Fort Walton Beach, Florida (population 19,992): The City Council on Tuesday voted unanimously to hire Michael Beedie as the new city manager, according to the Northwest Florida Daily News. Beedie has served as the acting city manager since May 8. Just before the council was set to discuss which of four finalists for the post to interview, Councilman Trey Goodwin proposed giving the job to Beedie. Councilman Bobby Griggs agreed and said he’s been pleased with Beedie’s leadership. Beedie has worked for the city for seven and a half years. He started as a staff engineer and worked his way up to city engineer and engineering and utility director. Beedie was one of four finalists that included Anthony Matheny, director of planning and community development in Quincy; Matthew Schwartz, former city manager in Bay Village; and Robert J. Bartolotta, former city manager in Sarasota. Beedie’s hiring was met with a round of applause at the meeting. Beedie replaces former City Manager Bob Mearns, who was abruptly fired in early May. Some council members said they were unhappy with Mearns’ management style and had received complaints from employees about his attitude.

St. Helens, Oregon (population 12,883): John Walsh has been named city administrator, according to the Coast River Business Journal. He replaces Chad Olsen, who left in January to become city manager position in Carlton, Ore. Walsh was Myrtle Point’s city manager for the past three years. He was chosen from a pool of 71 applicants. Walsh is a graduate of Western Washington University, where he received a bachelor’s degree in geography and urban planning. He is studying for a master’s degree in public administration from Portland State University.

Fortuna, California (population 11,926): The Fortuna City Council will welcome new City Manager Regan Candelario, according to the Times-StandardCandelario comes to Fortuna from Guadalupe, a small city in northern Santa Barbara County, where he served as the city administrator.

Cedartown, Georgia (population 9,750): A reception was held Tuesday afternoon at Cedartown City Hall for departing City Manage Robbie Rokovitz, who has accepted a position with the City of Hiram, according to The Cedartown Standard. City employees, elected officials and representatives from a variety of local businesses and public agencies stopped by to wish Rokovitz well. Also on hand for the event was incoming Cedartown City Manage Bill Fann, who has been promoted from the position of city public works director and assistant city manager to the city’s top salaried position. Cedartown City Commission Chairperson Dale Tuck said the city is in the middle of some complicated planning tasks, including preparation of the next year’s budget. Commissioners decided to promote from within the city’s ranks, with confidence that Fann has the expertise and on-hand knowledge needed to lead the city going forward. Fann’s new position pays a salary of $75,000 a year, which commissioners said is competitive for the northwest Georgia region and also comparable to the private sector. The position includes managing a workforce that is currently at 106 city employees. Rokovitz has been with the city for nearly two years. He was hired in October 2010 at a starting salary of $79,000. Fann has been with the city for about eight months. He was hired as public works director after previously serving as police chief and in the city administration in Piedmont, Ala. for many years. Fann’s promotion officially takes place Friday, which is also the effective day of Rokovitz’s resignation.

Monmouth, Illinois (population 9,444): The top employee in the City of Monmouth is stepping down and moving to Iowa, according to WGIL. Eric Hanson announced in a press release Tuesday that he’s resigning at City Administrator in Monmouth, to become City Manager in Indianola, Iowa, beginning October 15th. Hanson became City Administrator in Monmouth for five years, and a press release touts things like the development of areas including the new Walgreens store, the Monmouth Crossing retail area, and new police and fire stations, a new wastewater treatment plant, and other things. In the press release, Hanson calls the move bittersweet, but one that allows him to work in another growing area. Hanson, a graduate of Monmouth College, was formerly an employee of the local University of Illinois Extension area, and a former mayor of Cambridge in Henry County, among other tasks. Indianola, Iowa has a population of about 15-thousand people, and is south of Des Moines. His salary will be 134-thousand dollars a year. Hanson did not return calls seeking an interview on his move. A City statement doesn’t say when his last day will be with Monmouth.

Delta, Colorado (population 8,915): The Delta City Council has offered the city manager position to Justin Clifton, former town manager of Bayfield, a community of 2,300 in the southwest corner of the state, according to the Delta County Independent. Council is in the process of final negotiations with Clifton and, if successful, will consider adopting an employment contract at a future city council meeting. Clifton, 35, is a graduate of Rocky Mountain High School in Fort Collins and attended Fort Lewis College in Durango. He earned a bachelor of science degree in political science and philosophy, then pursued a master of arts degree in public policy from the University of Colorado at Denver. Council member Mary Cooper said she was struck by Clifton’s enthusiasm. Clifton does not have a great deal of experience, which was a focus of “long, hard” discussion among council members. Ultimately council was unanimous in its decision to offer the position to Clifton, Cooper reports. Clifton resigned his position in Bayfield in March 2011 to travel the world with his girlfriend. During his tenure as town manager, according to the Durango Herald, Clifton oversaw the improvement of the town’s water treatment infrastructure, the town’s takeover and overhaul of the Bayfield Sanitation District, the construction of a new town hall, senior center and public works building, and helped the town secure more than $8 million in grants. Because Clifton is currently unemployed, council members anticipate he’ll be able to start the job soon after contract negotiations have been completed.

Middlebury, Vermont (population 8,496): Middlebury Town Manager Bill Finger stepped down from his job on Friday, Aug. 31, and was succeeded by Assistant Town Manager Kathleen Ramsay, according to the Addison County Independent. It’s an administrative transition that was scripted by the Middlebury selectboard a year ago. That’s when Ramsay returned to Middlebury to the same post she had vacated in 2007 in order to become Pittsford town manager. In 2008, she became Killington’s top administrator. Knowing that Finger was getting close to retiring, Middlebury officials talked to Ramsay about a 2011 return with a promotion to town manager in 2012. She accepted, and the metaphorical changing of the guard occurred last week, after the selectboard formally offered her a three-year contract. Ramsay and Finger have worked closely to make for a smooth succession. Ramsay, 47, has attended many municipal subcommittee meetings, such as those dealing with municipal gym repairs, proposed new town offices and a soon-to-be hired business development director — issues at the forefront of the selectboard’s agenda. A long tenure would continue a tradition of longevity enjoyed by her most immediate predecessors, Betty Wheeler and Bill Finger. Finger, now 67, was hired as town manager in 2000 after having served in that same capacity in other Vermont communities, including Shelburne. Meanwhile, town officials are crediting Finger with some stellar stewardship during his tenure in Middlebury. It’s been during Finger’s administrative watch that Middlebury built a new downtown bridge and a new police station; the town is currently developing plans for a community center that would include new town offices. Middlebury’s two fire stations are currently being dramatically improved. It’s also a period during which the town has caught up on a lot of deferred maintenance on infrastructure, such as road, sidewalk and water system improvements. At the same time Finger, at the direction of the selectboard, has tried to keep the municipal tax rate in check — freezing it at one point for three consecutive years. Finger quickly points out that the aforementioned accomplishments were the product of many people and organizations working together. George served on the Middlebury committee that interviewed and recommended Finger for the town manager’s job back in 2000. He said he will look back on his time in Middlebury with fond memories. He leaves Middlebury with one major project still on the drawing board: A new municipal building/community center. Several ad hoc committees, an architect and the selectboard continue to hash out ideas for the new structure that could someday be built on the site of the current municipal building at the intersection of College and South Main streets. Finger believes the town is giving the proposed center a fair discussion and he is optimistic the project will come to fruition. Though he is stepping down as town manager, Finger won’t be leaving the area. He plans to remain a resident of Lincoln “for the foreseeable future.” There, he will tend to various home improvement projects while staying involved in local and regional nonprofit causes — such as the Weathervane United elderly housing complex in Lincoln and the Friends of West Rutland Town Hall. He is also receptive to fielding occasional assignments that the Middlebury selectboard might throw his way in the future. But following his last day on the job, he plans to take a breather.

Avon, Colorado (population 6,447): The Avon Town Council this week made the final move to hire a new town manager, according to the Vail Daily. Virginia Egger, now the top administrator for the city of Sun Valley, Idaho, will start work in Avon Dec. 1. The council Tuesday approved an employment agreement with Egger that calls for annual pay of $143,000 per year, plus $1,000 per month for a housing and auto allowance. Egger was one or more than 100 people who applied for the job. The top five candidates were interviewed in Avon, and all spent time with town employees, other town managers and, of course, town council members. This is Egger’s second stint working in Sun Valley, where she also worked between 2004 and 2007. She was also town manager of Telluride from 1986 — 1994. She has also worked in for private and non-profit organizations in Colorado, Idaho and New York. She was executive director of the Telluride Mountain Film Festival and was first head of the Telluride Mountain School.

Indian Hill, Ohio (population 5,907): In the coming year, a new era will begin in Indian Hill, as City Manager Mike Burns announced he is retiring after more than 20 years with the village, according to The Community Press & Recorder. During the Indian Hill Village Council meeting Aug. 27, Burns announced he plans to retire Jan. 18, ending a 23-year career as city manager for Indian Hill. Burns said he notified council previously, but wanted to make it official during the meeting. He is only the fifth city manager in Indian Hill’s history, and served the longest tenure of anyone. Mayor Mark Tullis suggested council vote on the retirement notice, soliciting laughter from councilmembers. Despite the announcement, Burns pressed on with council business, noting he would have more to say as Jan. 18 approaches. Tullis said the village has hired a search firm that will narrow the field of potential candidates to 10 to 15, at which point the candidates will be interviewed by a group of three council members. He said that process will lessen the field of candidates to three to five, at which point the entire Village Council will interview the candidates before choosing a successor. Tullis said the village hopes to have a new city manager in place by November, to allow the new hire to work alongside Burns for approximately two months before taking over the position.

High Springs, Florida (population 5,350): After a debate that stretched over the course of several months, the High Springs Commission decided on Thursday, Aug. 16, in a 3-2 vote, to begin advertisements for a new city manager, according to Alachua County Today. Vice Mayor Bob Barnas previously proposed moving forward with advertising at an earlier meeting on Aug. 9. During Thursday’s discussion, the motion to advertise passed with Barnas, Commissioner Linda Gestrin and Mayor Dean Davis voting in favor of the measure. According to the ad that will be placed in several newspapers and web sites, the City is looking for a new city manager until a closing date of Sept. 26. Applicants should have three to five years experience, as well as preferred experience in finance. Current City Manager Jeri Langman said she does not intend to apply for the position because she doesn’t think her application would be accepted. However, she did send a letter to the commission to correct what she believes are misconceptions spoken about her on the dais. Langman also states that when the commission made her a permanent manager, she acquired certain rights afforded to her by the High Springs City Charter. She claims that her termination and the removal of the rights must occur pursuant to the charter guidelines. Langman wrote in her letter that the rift between her and the commission started after she issued a press release calling for Barnas to resign because of several alleged charter violations on his part. Subsequently, the vice mayor appeared on radio talk shows stating he wanted Langman terminated, as well as trying to rally support for the action, Langman said. During the meeting on Aug. 9, Barnas announced in the final moments of the meeting that he wasn’t happy with Langman, and he claimed the memorandum of understanding, which outlines her terms of employment, stated that she was a temporary employee helping High Springs until a permanent manager could be brought on. However, there seems to be some disagreement among the commission on that point as Davis said during Thursday’s meeting that Langman was not temporary, but had been voted in as a permanent city manager. In an unannounced move by the commission at the Feb. 9, 2012 meeting, Langman made the transition from interim to permanent city manager. Commissioners Sue Weller and Scott Jamison take issue with the process the other three commissioners are taking to effect Langman’s removal from office, characterizing the action as unethical.  Weller has stated that the special meetings, originally scheduled as budget workshops, are not the place to discuss the future of the city manager. The matter should instead be placed on an agenda during a regular commission meeting. Citizens do not expect the future of their city manager to be discussed during a budget meeting, Weller said. Jamison argued that seeking a new hire for a position which an employee is currently occupying is wrong. In her letter, Langman detailed that the commission majority has left the City unable to balance the budget, especially in the face of grave economic times. The majority of the commission refuses to increase taxes, yet the City is struggling with sewer debt, the cost of bringing back a city run emergency dispatch enter and draining contingency funds.

Tisbury, Massachusetts (population 3,949): Tisbury selectmen, at their weekly meeting Tuesday, announced the departure of town administrator John Bugbee, according to The Martha’s Vineyard Times. Mr. Bugbee’s contract was to expire on June 30, 2013, but he will leave by the end of this year. The only indication of the town management shakeup was a notation on the agenda under new business, “Contract Negotiations.” Chairman Tristan Israel, the only current selectman who served on the board when Mr. Bugbee was hired in 2004, announced the change. A heavy silence followed Mr. Israel’s statement. Mr. Bugbee said nothing and appeared tense and uneasy. Selectman Jon Snyder made no comment. Selectman Jeff Kristal was off-Island and absent. The selectmen moved quickly to other business. The meeting, which began at 5 pm, ended a few minutes later, just before 6 pm, record time for Tisbury selectmen, whose meetings often last for hours. Tisbury selectmen chose Mr. Bugbee to be the town administrator on February 24, 2004. He assumed his duties on March 29 of that year. Prior to arriving in Tisbury, Mr. Bugbee had experience in public service as a former mayor’s aide in Newburyport and a legislative aide for former state Rep. Kevin Finnegan. A native of Sandwich, he completed his master’s degree in public administration from Bridgewater State College, after taking the job as Tisbury’s town administrator. His current contract runs from July 20, 2010, through June 29, 2013. Mr. Bugbee’s salary for fiscal year 2013 is $116,134.56 which is Step 7, the top step of the town’s managerial pay scale. Under the terms of the agreement, selectmen may terminate Mr. Bugbee at any time for any reason, without cause, in which case the town must pay him “through the balance of the contract term, but for not more than 60 calendar days.” For many of those sitting in the Katharine Cornell Theater Tuesday, and regular close observers of town affairs, the announcement was anti-climatic. News of the selectmen’s decision not to renew Mr. Bugbee’s contract and his early departure had circulated around town for days. Selectmen asked Mr. Bugbee to leave, and the only question was when, according to one source close to the discussions. Mr. Bugbee listed as pending projects the first round of Green Community grant purchases, the completion of the town’s ground-mounted solar array project, and the opening of the town’s new emergency services facility. Asked if he was surprised by the selectmen’s request that he leave before his contract expired, or if it had been under discussion some time, Mr. Bugbee declined to comment. Mr. Bugbee praised his co-workers. But it has not all been smooth sailing. In March, Tisbury’s board of registrars accused Mr. Bugbee of perjury and fraud after he claimed Tisbury residency in order to register to vote at the same time that he claimed residency in Fall River. Mr. Bugbee said it was a mistake. As the town’s chief personnel officer, Mr. Bugbee’s relationship with members of the police department was further strained following the selectmen’s decision to fire veteran police Sergeant Robert Fiske, at the conclusion of an internal investigation and review of the officer’s actions on July 23, 2011, when a young babysitter was left alone, following a domestic assault, and later raped. Asked to what extent recent events may have affected the selectmen’s decision to ask him to leave early, Mr. Bugbee had no clear answer. One of the projects Mr. Bugbee said he hopes to complete has to do with the town’s recent designation as a Green Community. Mr. Bugbee spearheaded Tisbury’s efforts last year to meet the five criteria required for a Green Community designation by the state’s Department of Energy Resources (DOER). The town was named a Green Community in July by Governor Deval Patrick, for which it received an energy efficiency grant from the state for $140,925. Tisbury and Edgartown are two of seven Cape and Vineyard Electric Cooperative (CVEC) member towns on Martha’s Vineyard and Cape Cod where the cooperative will install solar PV systems. Tisbury plans a solar array at the site of its old landfill off State Road. The solar photovoltaic system will be constructed on 10 acres of town land near the Park and Ride lot, a project that mirrors those under way in many Massachusetts towns, to use capped landfills.

Park Rapids, Minnesota (population 3,709): Park Rapids City Administrator Bill Smith has resigned after accepting a position in Providence, Ky, according to the Park Rapids EnterpriseSmith has been city administrator in Park Rapids since June of 2008. His last day is Wednesday, Sept. 5 and he will start work as CEO of Regional Healthcare Affiliates in Providence, Ky. Monday, Sept. 10. Smith plans to formally announce his resignation at the Tuesday, Aug. 28 Park Rapids City Council meeting. The council will then need to figure out how it wants to proceed in filling the position.

Mansfield, Pennsylvania (population 3,625): A Tioga County official is retiring after more than three decades of service to his town, according to WETM. Ed Grala served as Mansfield Borough Manager for 25 years, and he worked for the Borough for 32 and a half years. Reflecting on his accomplishments as Borough Manager, there are few things Grala is particularly proud of:  Acquiring a new municipal building, expanding Mansfield’s sewage treatment plant, and turning the old armory into a YMCA. After today, no one will actually hold the title “borough manager.” His successors are Shawn Forrest, who will become Codes and Public Works Director, and Lynnette Hoyt, who will take over as Director of Finance and Administration. Together, they’ll have most of Grala’s responsibilities. The three of them, along with colleagues and friends, enjoyed a luncheon together celebrating his retirement. Colleagues say they’ll miss Grala, too. Grala worked on packing up his office Thursday afternoon. He says leaving is bittersweet.

Lanesboro, Massachusetts (population 2,496): Wellfleet’s Town Administrator Paul Sieloff has accepted the same post in Lanesborough, according to iBerkshires.com. The Board of Selectmen agreed to hire Sieloff as the town’s first full-time town administrator pending negotiations and a background check. The board interviewed three candidates but unanimously agreed on Sieloff. Sieloff has been Wellfleet’s town administrator since 2008. He was hired to work three days a week while commuting from his Albany, N.Y., home but that grew to four days a week. Earlier this year, he announced he was leaving Wellfleet to avoid the lengthy commute. His resume includes working as a budget analyst with the Albany County Office of Budget Analysis, village manager in Northport, N.Y., and Valley Stream, N.Y. Sieloff is a a licensed attorney in New York and has a master’s degree in political science with a concentration on state and local government. Sieloff was the unanimous pick of the board. Selectman Robert Barton said he contacted references and did a background check and all three candidates were consistent. Sieloff was up against Ashland’s Director of Community Development Matthew Selby and former West Springfield Mayor Edward Gibson. The town has budgeted between $60,000 and $70,000 for the position. Interim Town Administrator Joseph Kellogg said he will be available to help Sieloff transition into the position. The board also had his praise for his work on the search committee that narrowed 41 applications down to the final three candidates. The town’s last administrator, Paul Boudreau, was part time and resigned after 13 years earlier this year. Kellogg was appointed on a part-time interim basis. After a committee examined the town’s needs, the group suggested bumping the position up to full time. Voter approved the full-time position at a special town meeting in July.

Oxford, Georgia (population 2,134): Oxford city manager Clark Miller plans to retire this year, according to the Newton Citizen. He recently informed Mayor Jerry Roseberry and the council of his plans to retire until the city can find a replacement in the coming months. He said he’s dealing with some health and stress issues, so his doctor has suggested a change of lifestyle. Miller will be working on a limited schedule in the meantime. Oxford mayor Jerry Roseberry said Miller has been “a tremendous asset” to the city of Oxford. Miller became the city’s first city manager, when it changed its form of government in July 2011. Miller originally was hired as Oxford’s Chief of Police in 2008 and served in that position until being appointed the interim city clerk administrator and then city manager. He had retired as an administrative from the DeKalb County Police Department after 12 years before coming to Oxford. Roseberry said he anticipates that the city will have a new city manager in place within the next couple of months.

Glade Spring, Virgina (population 1,456): A mysterious string of events has led to the termination of Glade Spring’s town manager, Joshua Jones, and Chad Stanley, a maintenance worker. On Aug. 6, after nearly three hours in closed session, the town council voted to fire both men. It is not known whether the dismissals are connected. Personnel issues were not on the published agenda, but added after the council recited the Pledge of Allegiance. Jones’ termination appears to be abrupt, considering that he worked closely with Glade Spring Mayor Lee Coburn on numerous projects until his departure. However, Jones made a recent gaffe that could have serious consequences. In the spring, People Inc. submitted an application to the town for a conditional-use permit, seeking to construct a building in Glade to support the Head Start program. Jones approved it instead of redirecting it through the planning commission and the board of zoning appeals. Construction began in early summer without the required permissions. Jones apologized for his hasty approval at a council meeting July 2, and since then town has been trying to backtrack the building through the process. The planning commission voted to recommend approval of the building to the board of zoning appeals, but the zoning board has yet to approve it, because membership on the board has been in flux. Three of its five members’ terms are up, and Nancy Williams cannot continue on the BZA since winning a council seat. That gaffe, though, seems to have little to do with Jones’ departure from town. Councilman Joel Rudy said the situation with the People Inc. building was not discussed in the closed session pertaining to Jones’ employment. Mostly, though town officials are keeping mum on the firings, citing a Virginia law that allows personnel issues to be discussed in closed session. However, goings on around town are anything but business as usual. Coburn ordered the drug testing of all town employees, including those at the police department, on July 31. Testing ran for one week, and results were returned to the mayor on Aug. 16. Coburn also ordered the locks changed on all town property on Aug 3. Coburn would not say whether any refusals had been made to his testing request or if any tests returned positive for illegal substances.

Transitions: Arlington, TX; Henry County, GA; West Sacramento, CA and more

“When you get in it and you’re in that groove and it’s working, it is a very fulfilling thing from a career standpoint and a public service standpoint.”–Morehead City Manager Randy Martin

Arlington, Texas (population 365,438): After conducting a national search for a new city manager, Arlington City Council members stayed close to home for their choice, according to the Star-Telegram. Deputy City Manager Trey Yelverton, 44, who has worked for the city since 1993, was promoted to the top job at the end of Tuesday’s council work session. Yelverton has been deputy city manager since 2006, overseeing departments including economic development, community services, parks and recreation, libraries, and police and fire. Previously, he was neighborhood services director. Yelverton earned a bachelor’s degree in political science-public administration from the University of Texas at Arlington in 1988 and a master’s from the University of North Texas in 1989. The council will vote on Yelverton’s contract at a later date, Cluck said. Last week, the council met twice to review 53 applicants. Councilman Robert Rivera said Yelverton, whose accomplishments include facilitating the Cowboys Stadium project and Super Bowl XLV bid, was an obvious choice.

Henry County, Georgia (population 203,922): During a called meeting last week, the Henry County Board of Commissioners appointed District 2 Commissioner Fred Auletta to the position of county manager, recently held by Butch Sanders, who turned in his resignation, according to Neighborhood Newspapers. With nearly 45 years of management and financial experience and an intimate knowledge of the county’s budget situation, Auletta is the ideal choice for the position, ensuring the county can effectively plan for the next fiscal year without missing a beat in spite of the anticipated decline in the tax digest. And at a called meeting last Friday, the commissioners named Brian Preston to fill the seat vacated by Auletta when he stepped down from the board earlier last week. Preston was one of seven people considered for the appointment. Others on the list included Roy Clack, Dan Judson, Arley Lowe, John Palmer, Brian Strickland and Kathy Watts. In anticipation of the appointment, Auletta submitted his letter of resignation to the Governor’s office earlier this week. He is also stepping down from his position at Bennett International, where he has been successful in broadening their base, increasing sales and improving the company’s profit margin even in this down economy. Also during last Friday’s called meeting, the board named District 3 Commissioner Randy Stamey as vice-chairman.

West Sacramento, California (population 37,642): West Sacramento Mayor Christopher Cabaldon announced that City Manager Toby Ross plans to retire before July 1, according to The Sacramento Bee. Since assuming the city manager’s post in November 2002, Ross has overseen numerous projects and programs. City officials cited among his accomplishments major retail development in the north and south areas of the city, with anchor tenants such as IKEA, Walmart, Nugget and Target. They also cited development of the downtown into a government center encompassing City Hall, the Arthur F. Turner Yolo County Library, a satellite facility for Sacramento City College and a City Community Center. Before coming to West Sacramento, Ross was city manager for Park City, Utah, for 13 years.

Fulton County, Illinois (population 37,069): Only the Fulton County Board would break off a long-term relationship on Valentine’s Day, according to the Journal Star. The tally was 11-6 to notify Fulton County Administrator Mike Hays that the board does not intend to renew its vows in September. This is the second time he was left standing with an altered contract. His most recent agreement was struck after last-minute negotiating last fall, after a similar board decision. Allegedly, the break-up is not about love, but money. George Hall explained that Hays has a one-year contract which expires Sept. 13. Under the terms of that contract, Hays must be given at least 180 days notice if the board does not intend to renew. Otherwise, the contract automatically renews for another year. Hall maintains the county cannot guarantee it will have the funds for an administrator in the future. Hays makes $76,915 a year. Steve Conklin disputed that explanation. He called it ironic that the board approved hiring a new clerical assistant in the administrator’s office at the same meeting. Conklin is a member of the finance committee. He said if getting rid of Hays was a financial move, it should have been discussed by that group, but it was only discussed by the executive committee. Hays himself said little, except that it is common for county administrators to have severance or long-term provisions because they work in politically volatile situations. He said he told the board he intends to seek other employment, but will work hard in the seven months remaining on his contract.

Burlington, Iowa (population 25,663): After two days of interviews, the Burlington City Council Saturday named James Ferneau, 44, its new city manager, according to The Hawk Eye. Ferneau, city administrator of Sergeant Bluff since 2008, will start his new job in Burlington April 23, after a 60-day notice. Ferneau, who has been city administrator of Sergeant Bluff since 2008, will start his new job in Burlington April 23, following a 60-day notice to his current employer. Six candidates had an individual two-hour community orientation tour, met with a citizen’s panel and had an hourlong interview with city council members. Mayor Jim Davidson said the council and the panel were in agreement about hiring Ferneau once the interviews were over. Mayor Jim Davidson said the council and the panel were in agreement about hiring Ferneau. Ferneau has more to offer than a solid grasp on the budget, though. Davidson said the man is very personable. Mayor Pro Tem Christopher Reed said Ferneau stood out right away from the other candidates. Ferneau was headed back home Saturday night and is looking forward to bringing eight of his nine children back with him. The council has scheduled a special meeting at 4:30 p.m. Thursday to officially adopt a resolution approving Ferneau’s employment agreement. The public is encouraged to attend. Ferneau is a native Iowan and said he will spend the first several weeks of his new job getting to know the staff and the community, as well as identifying the biggest issues that need to be dealt with. He said Burlington is comparable to his hometown of Marshalltown in many ways. He has 11 years of city management experience, having worked as city manager of Fairbury, Neb., before moving to Sergeant Bluff. Police Chief Dan Luttenegger has been interim city manager since Doug Worden retired at the end of December. Luttenegger and the council are still working on the fiscal year 2013 budget, which will be approved before Ferneau comes on board. Ferneau said given realities in municipalities’ budgets, the old way of doing things doesn’t work. He said addressing challenges means thinking outside the box, like sharing services with other entities and streamlining services. Ferneau was selected from six finalists recruited by Voorhees Associates from a field of 66 applicants. Davidson said he sees a bright future ahead for Burlington with Ferneau at the helm.

Marina, California (population 19,718): A letter laying out the rationale for City Manager Tony Altfeld’s pending ouster is short — one paragraph — and says the only reason is the city and Altfeld have failed to agree on pay issues, according to The Monterey County Herald. Responding to Altfeld’s request for written reasons for his pending March 7 termination, an Oakland labor attorney hired by the City Council to handle dealings with the embattled chief executive replied last Friday. The Feb. 17 letter from attorney Edward Kreisberg told Altfeld the sole reason for his pending removal was that he and the City Council could not agree on appropriate pay and severance terms for a new contract. Altfeld makes about $203,000 a year and his contract calls for 12 months of severance pay if he is let go. The city code, however, appears to cap a dismissed city manager’s severance pay at four months. Altfeld’s attorney, Mark O’Connor, took issue Tuesday with the reason given in the city’s letter. He said Altfeld had agreed to the City Council’s “last and best offer” on compensation and severance terms. O’Connor said the letter fell short of adequately disclosing “the information that bears on the reason” for Altfeld’s planned termination. Kreisberg didn’t return a phone message Tuesday. The council today will consider scheduling a public hearing sought by Altfeld on his termination for its March 6 meeting, the day before the city manager is supposed to go.

Safety Harbor, Florida (population 16,884): The Safety Harbor City Commission voted Monday night on a three-year contract with former City Manager Matt Spoor that brings him back at the same salary, according to the Tampa Bay Times. Spoor resigned in early January for a job with St. Petersburg but recently asked for his old job back. Commissioners unanimously agreed to an annual salary of $122,763 for the returning city manager. “Congratulations, Mr. Spoor. It’s good to have you back,” said Mayor Andy Steingold.

Green River, Wyoming (population 12,515): Longtime Green River City administrator Barry Cook has resigned, according to KUGR News. Green River mayor Hank Castillion said Cook handed him his resignation letter Thursday night. Castillion says the letter will be forwarded to the City council for discussion and action at there upcoming Tuesday night meeting. Castillion says he could not comment on what the next step will be for the city until the council has an opportunity to discuss Cook’s resignation. Cook has served the city for over 15 years.

Vidor, Texas (population 10,579): Ricky Jorgensen, Vidor city manager, is ending his seven year tenure with the city on March 9, according to The Record Live. He’ll be the new city manager of Giddings, a city on Highway 290 that is 40 miles south of Austin. Jorgensen said he looks forward to the move for two reasons: his daughter and his three-month-old grandchild live in Austin and also Giddings has its own water, sewer and electrical works utilities. Jorgensen feels the city has accomplished much in his stay in Vidor. Some of those accomplishments that stand out to him include completing two property annexations that allowed the city to grow, building the Joe Hopkins Memorial Park, building a new city hall, using Hotel Occupancy Tax money to improve the quality of life in an effective way and more revenues coming in. In fact, the city is close to balancing its budget for the first time in years, he said. The city council has also reached the halfway mark in the zoning process for the city. The city council and the Vidor Police Association also agreed upon a new contract two years ago. Another round of police contract negotiations will begin again either in May or June of this year. Advertising for a new city manager for Vidor has begun with notices on the Texas Municipal League, the Texas Managers Association websites and newspapers.

Taft, California (population 9,327): City Manager Bob Gorson resigned unexpectedly Tuesday night, apparently during an evaluation by the Taft City Council, according to the Taft Midway Driller. Gorson turned in his keys and was escorted from the building. Mayor Randy Miller confirmed the announcement Wednesday morning. Public Works Director Craig Jones was named interim city manager. Miller and City Attorney David Prentice were going to meet with city staff Wednesday morning to discuss the sudden resignation. Gorson’s  evaluation was on the agenda for a closed session prior to the 7 p.m. regular meeting, but it was postponed until after the regular open session. The council adjourned into closed session with Gorson and Prentice about 8:20 p.m.

Franklin, Virginia (population 8,812): After taking the Franklin city manager’s job on a three-month interim basis, June Fleming on Tuesday will return to retirement for what turned into a 3½-year stint, according to the Tidewater News. Fleming, who retired as city manager of Palo Alto, Calif., and moved to Franklin in 2000, applied for the interim position in 2008 when former City Manager Bucky Taylor left. The City Council searched for a city manager when she came on, but didn’t get a good pool of candidates. Randy Martin, the city manager for Morehead City, N.C., will start on Tuesday, Feb. 21. (See story below.) Fleming said she has enjoyed her time with the city and has no regrets. A member of High Street United Methodist Church, she plans to volunteer for the church and spend more time with family. She will represent Franklin on the Paul D. Camp Community College Board of Directors. Mayor Jim Councill wished Fleming well in retirement. A Little Rock, Ark., native, Fleming married her husband, Roscoe, 46 years ago. The couple has a daughter each and adopted a son together. Fleming began her city government career with the Palo Alto Public Library before working her through the ranks to city manager. She was with the City of Palo Alto for more than 30 years. Fleming took over at a crucial time when the city was trying to become more fiscally responsible, said Councilman Benny Burgess. He said Fleming helped clean up the budgeting process.  Fleming said one of the biggest challenges she faced in her time was managing the economic downturn. She also oversaw the restructuring of city debt and was able to take positions out of the budget that had never been filled. Councilman Barry Cheatham said Fleming came to the city when her leadership was “sorely needed.”

Morehead City, North Carolina (population 7,440): The life of a public servant often means change, but for departing Morehead City Manager Randy Martin there has been a constant during his 16-year tenure with the town: a shared vision of the town council, the staff, the manager and the community, according to the Jacksonville Daily News. It’s a valued combination in a local government career. Add in the fact that it’s the place where he and his wife, Sheila, have raised their three sons and where they’ve become part of the community, and Martin said he has never lost his enthusiasm for the job or the town. Martin is retiring after working more than 30 years in local government in North Carolina and will continue his public service work for a while longer with a new job as city manager in Franklin, Va. With half of his North Carolina career in Morehead City, there are many projects and accomplishments that come up in conversation: the restoration of the downtown train depot, the Radio Island Water Access, the acquisition of Sugarloaf Island, and the construction of a new police department and new fire department facilities to name a few of the most visible ones. There have also been major upgrades to town utilities, including a new state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plant, a 10-year project said to be the largest in the town’s history. One of the areas in which Martin says he is most proud is the expansion of the town’s parks and recreation facilities and programs. In numbers, the amount of town-owned public recreation space as grown from less than 5 acres to close to 80. The town’s recreation center has been fully renovated, water accesses have been added, bike paths and multi-use trails are well used and ball fields and playgrounds have been constructed, from Rotary Park and Shevans Park to the new baseball field at Big Rock Stadium, which serves as home to the Morehead City Marlins, a summer college baseball team. Martin said the successes the town has seen are the result of a cooperative effort. As he retires from his Morehead City duties, Martin’s biggest compliment to the town is that his family considers it home and it’s the place where he plans to return when he retires again. Martin’s last day on the job will be Monday. The town has hired Peter Connet, a retired city manager, to serve on an interim basis while the town council conducts a search for a new manager.

High Springs, Florida (population 5,552):  In an unannounced move Feb. 9, the High Springs Commission appointed Jeri Langman to the permanent position of City Manager, according to Alachua County Today.  Although it was not on the agenda, commissioners made the appointment during the final moments of the meeting, raising concerns among several people in attendance that the matter should have been deferred and taken up after being advertised to the public. Despite harsh criticism from some, on a motion placed on the floor by Vice Mayor Barnas and seconded by Commissioner Linda Gestrin, commissioners approved the measure in a 3-1 vote.  Mayor Dean Davis also supported the appointed while Commissioner Sue Weller cast the only vote against it. It was during that workshop before the regularly scheduled commission meeting that it was reported that the only remaining candidate in the running for the job, W.D. Higginbotham, Jr., withdrew from the process. Langman was hired as the interim city manager in December at a salary of $4,000 monthly without benefits.  She replaced Jenny Parham, who served as interim city manager and was compensated about $1,500 monthly in addition to her role as city clerk.  Langman will drop the interim from her title, but will see a marked increase in compensation.  In approving the change, commissioners also gave Langman an annual salary of $55,000 plus benefits. The appointment did not come without heated criticism from several people calling on the commission to reconsider the action.  Most of those speaking out in opposition to the appointment urged the commission to restart the city manager selection process.  Others, however, lauded the commission and encouraged their fellow residents to stand behind Langman and the city. Barnas said he was pleased with Langman and didn’t want to search for another city manager.  But numerous people spoke out against aborting the search for a city manager, including resident Laura Graetz who said the city needs a city manager with the proper qualifications to run a city. Graetz referenced an employment advertisement for the city manager position, in which the desired qualifications are outlined.  Among them are 3-5 years of responsible municipal government experience, professional management experience and economic development experience.  Linda Jones said she voted for Barnas and Gestrin but accused the duo of switching their positions. Other residents, including Bob Hallman, supported the commission’s move and blamed the city’s prior administration for harming its financial position. Hallman also said unrest in the community might be explained by what he considers inaccurate news reporting.  Hallman did tell the commission that he thought there was some “serious staff problems” at the City.  But he supported the appointment of Langman. Resident and employee Don Alderman said he was pleased with the direction of the City, but warned that the commission’s swift actions on Thursday might not be perceived by the public in a positive light, and therefore, motivate people to replace commissioners.  After Barnas made the motion during the City Commissioner Comments portion of the meeting to appoint Langman, former City Attorney and High Springs resident Thomas DePeter sharply criticized the move. Another criticism came online as former commissioner Eric May noted on his blog site that in making the appointment during commission comments, they violated the city’s own rules.  According to section 4(L) of the city commission’s Rules of Procedures, “Final action can only be taken if the City Commission waives its Rules of Procedures.”  That waiver never occurred.  Although there appears to be a violation of the city’s own rules, the appointment of Langman is unlikely to be successfully contested as the rules are not state law. Langman’s appointment was effective immediately.

Osceola, Iowa (population 4,614): A separation agreement was signed with Osceola City Administrator Bill Kelly last week after the city council held a special closed session, according to the Osceola Sentinel-Tribune. Kelly was placed on administrative paid leave by the council for disorderly conduct after Kelly acted in a disruptive manner during a recent budget meeting. However, Mayor Fred Diehl said there were other previous actions of Kelly that led to the council’s final decision. The council voted 5-1 to terminate Kelly’s contract and enter into the separation agreement. Councilmember Glenn Schaff said he was in favor of terminating Kelly, however, he was not in favor of the agreement package the council approved. Kelly served as city administrator for five years. City Clerk Ty Wheeler will be filling in temporarily as administrator. Diehl said although Wheeler is young he feels it’ll be a good opportunity for him. According to the agreement, the employment contract, entered into with Kelly in November 2007, will be terminated without cause. The city’s 60-day notice of termination was issued, effective Feb. 17, and the date of termination will be Apr. 17. The agreement states that after the date of termination, “the city shall issue to the employee payment of severance equal to six months salary, six months of insurance benefits, and accrued vacation less any applicable employee insurance contributions.” In addition, the city agrees to allow Kelly to reside at his home through Oct. 17 under the pre-existing agreement reached in November 2009. However, the city won’t compensate Kelly for the rental value of the residence in the event Kelly moves prior to Oct. 17. The agreement states the employee agrees to waive any and all legal claims against the city.

Grosbeck, Texas (population 4,040): A long time City Administrator announced her resignation Tuesday at a city council meeting in Groesbeck, according to Our Town Grosebeck.Martha Stanton worked for the city for 38 years. City Council members in Groesbeck accepted Stanton’s resignation Tuesday night. Stanton’s last day working with the city will be March 31. The Groesbeck resident plans to stay in town, and find something to do to keep her busy. Jonestown, Texas (population 2,237): The Jonestown City Council voted unanimously Friday to accept the resignation of City Administrator Dan Dodson , who had been named in an ongoing grand jury investigation of a failed wind energy project, according to the Statesman. Court filings from October 2011 said Charlie Malouff Jr., founder of CM Energies, and Mary Jo Woodall, a former state comptroller’s office staffer and grant administrator, conspired to illegally obtain up to $2 million in federal stimulus money by overselling CM Energies’ ability to deliver the electricity-generating wind turbines. Dodson was named in court documents because of his involvement in the project. Dodson was named as the “project director,” “principal investigator” and “designated responsible employee” for the City of Jonestown on the grant paperwork, and he was warned by CM Energies employees that the windmill company couldn’t provide the technology for the wind turbines, authorities said in court documents. The city has filed a lawsuit against CM Energies, which was supposed to manufacture and install wind turbines for the city. Council members said Friday that city officials would continue to work with investigators involved in the case. Dodson, who has worked as city administrator since 2007 , didn’t appear in public during Friday’s meeting when council members met in executive session to discuss his employment. At the Feb. 9 council meeting, council members said they had received Dodson’s resignation letter but took no action at the time. In December, the council had decided against extending Dodson’s $80,000 annual contract. At the time, council members said Dodson would remain in his position without a contract because of his experience and his involvement in ongoing city projects. On Friday, the council also instructed city staff to begin advertising for a new city administrator, who would start May 1, if not sooner. Dodson would remain available as a consultant to the City of Jonestown, council members said. Alderman Joe Aaron said Friday that the last time the council looked for a city administrator, the process took more than five months. Dodson didn’t return a phone call on Friday seeking comment.