March 1 deadline for city manager applicants |

March 1 deadline for city manager applicants

The city of Glenwood Springs is looking for a chief administrator who has a “customer service ethic and enjoys being visible in the community,” according to a job description for the city manager’s position posted this week.

The job was formally advertised Wednesday by the head-hunting firm Slavin Management Consultants, which City Council retained to help find a permanent city manager after ending its contract with 11-year City Manager Jeff Hecksel in December.

Also included among the applicant qualities is someone “who has the ability to build positive relationships with all stakeholders,” according to the job listing, which has been posted to the International City/County Management Association, among other venues.

The deadline for application is March 1.

Certain to be among the applicants for the job is current Acting City Manager Andrew Gorgey, who was appointed in the interim when Hecksel was let go on Dec. 3.

Gorgey, the former Garfield County manager from 2012 until last July, confirmed Friday that he plans to put in for the city manager’s position.

Mayor Michael Gamba said that, after the application deadline, the consultants will select up to 10 “preliminary finalists” by March 4 to continue in the process. Telephone or live video interviews would take place during March, and council will name a list of finalists by April 1, Gamba said.

Council intends to name a new city manager by May 5 “at the latest,” however that decision could come as soon as the middle of April, Gamba said.

Meanwhile, City Attorney Karl Hanlon said council addressed a question that came up recently regarding a municipal code requirement that a city manager be appointed within 120 days after a vacancy comes about in the position. The code isn’t clear whether that means a permanent or interim manager, he said.

“My take on that is that they do have to appoint some type of city manager, acting or otherwise, within 120 days,” Hanlon said. “The intent is you don’t want the city run by council, without a strong city manager in place.”

The job listing describes that “strong manager” form of administration, where the manager is responsible for overseeing city operations and providing policy guidance to the City Council.

Glenwood Springs city government operates with a $58 million annual budget and 163 full-time-equivalent employees, the job posting notes.

The announcement also points out that the city has had just two city managers in the last 31 years, including Hecksel for 11 years and the late Mike Copp for 20 years prior to that.

City Council decided last August not to renew Hecksel’s rolling two-year contract, giving him one year’s notice.

Given a number of city projects that are in the works related to the Grand Avenue bridge project, council ultimately decided to move forward with finding a new city manager sooner rather than later.

Hecksel was given a severance deal for $10,900 per month through August of this year, or until he lands a new job, whichever comes first.

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