By Dwain W. PennMolena mayor Jay Garner and a quorum of council members held a called meeting May 22 to vote on a variety of subjects covered during a workshop right before the meeting. Council abolished the position of city manager and reduced police chief Jim Roberts’ annual salary by $4,000.Ever since the March meeting when it was learned Roberts, though providing the services of a city manager was never retained on an annual basis, the future of the position was in doubt. In 2009, Roberts became city manager by then mayor Elizabeth Barker and council. However, council did not fulfill its city charter by reinstating the position at the first council meeting of each subsequent year.There is a need to have a city employee available at city hall five days a week. The choice was between expanding the days and hours of city clerk Cindy Darsey, initially hired to work three days a week, and keeping the city manager position to fill in during Darsey’s absences. Last month, council agreed to expand the clerk’s hours to five days a week.The decision to reduce Roberts’ salary as police chief was his own recommendation. Roberts realized the ways and means committee was seeking ways to balance the budget. Comparing his salary with other regional police chiefs revealed his was slightly higher due to extra responsibilities.Council also:’¢ Heard petitions to keep the Molena Post Office open were circulating.’¢ Condoned the use of pepper spray by public works employee Doug Smith when he feels threatened by dogs.’¢ Discussed using the nuisance code to address a complaint about high grass on residential property. When contact information for the property owner is found a legal notice will be sent seeking a resolution.
Molena cuts city manager position
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