Connell City Council to pare list of finalists for city administrator

By Loretto J. Hulse, Tri-City HeraldFebruary 5, 2013 

CONNELL -- The Connell City Council plans to whittle down its list of city administrator candidates to four at its meeting Wednesday.

The city of about 5,000 north of Pasco has been without a top manager since former city administrator Steve Taylor took a new job in September.

"I'd thought we'd found someone a couple months ago but he was an older man from out of state, and the council decided they wanted someone younger, so I tabled the search until the first of the year," said Mayor Gary Walton. "Anyone we offer a contract to has to be approved by a majority of the council."

The city received 14 applications but only nine are complete, he said.

"We required they submit a letter of interest, a resume, an application and an example of their writing. Some only did three of the four, some two of the four," Walton said.

At Wednesday's meeting, the council will review the applications and pick its top four to come to Connell for interviews.

Walton plans to let Connell residents meet the four applicants in a town hall meeting.

"We did this 31/2 years ago when we hired our former city manager Steve Taylor. We brought in the top four and held a community event and let the citizens ask questions. It was good to see how they reacted to the public because usually it's just a committee asking questions," he said.

Walton hopes to have the hiring process completed within a month.

"That will help take a load off me because the new city administrator will be able to help attend meetings in town and out," he said. "That way one of us will always be in town."

The annual salary range for the position is $78,048 to $93,192.

The council meets at 6 p.m. Wednesday at 104 E. Adams St.

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