PROSSER -- Prosser's city administrator said his May 1 resignation won't prevent the city from accomplishing "bigger and better things."
Charlie Bush, four-year city administrator for Prosser, told the Herald on Thursday that he and his wife have enjoyed living in the community, but he will be accepting a job as the deputy city administrator for Issaquah in June.
The new job has many perks, like Issaquah's close proximity to family. Bush's wife's family lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, and Seattle offers non-stop flights to Bush's family in Orlando, Fla.
Bush also will make more money at his new job.
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Issaquah Mayor Ava Frisinger told the Herald that Bush will be paid $124,584 year, with the potential to earn more than $158,000 annually.
That's $23,200 more than his current base annual salary in Prosser.
Prosser Mayor Paul Warden reluctantly accepted Bush's resignation, according to a city news release. "Our community is better for having him here," he said.
Warden temporarily appointed Cathleen Koch, deputy city administrator and finance director, to fill the position.
Bush told the Herald that the city of Prosser has undergone massive reorganization in the past four years, resulting in a 20 percent reduction of staff by leaving positions vacant. He said his position also could be left vacant as a part of the reorganization, but Warden will make the final decision.
Rachel Shaw, Prosser city clerk, told the Herald that as of Thursday, Warden has not made a decision whether to leave vacant or fill the position.
"We are not leaning heavily toward either of the options in front of us," she said.
The city of Issaquah also considered leaving positions vacant, Frisinger said, including the one Bush will fill in June. But, as Frisinger explained, the deputy city administrator works in the city's northwest office and is critical to communicating with the city administrator in the main office.
Frisinger said Bush will work on two projects starting in June to develop Issaquah as an economic corridor.
One project involves building affordable housing in close proximity to jobs in a 1,100-acre urban center. Currently, the center consists mostly of strip malls, Frisinger said.
The other project involves developing a retail area near an urban center called Issaquah Highlands, where residential construction has exceeded retail.
As Bush prepares to tackle projects in Issaquah, he will leave behind ones in Prosser.
Bush said the city needs to finalize a contract for police-dispatch services and balance a $200,000 shortfall in the city's 2013 budget.
But he couldn't be leaving a more capable staff to tackle these problems, he said.
"We have worked really hard to create an organizational culture that focuses on high performance and excellence. We've got a very high quality staff, and I see them doing bigger and better things in the future," he said.