Saturday, August 14, 1999

Monroe replacing official

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        MONROE — As Assistant City Manager Jay Stewart prepares to leave the job he's held four years to embark on a new adventure — pursuing a law degree — the city is preparing to welcome a new administrator.

        City Manager Don Whitman says he plans to ask city council on Aug. 24 to approve William Brock as assistant city manager/engineer.

        If approved, Mr. Brock, 31, a senior engineer with Dayton's Department of Planning and Community Development, said he will start the new position Sept. 1.

        Mr. Stewart announced this week that his last day in his full-time position will be Wednesday, and that he will begin law school at the University of Dayton on Aug. 23. But he won't be leaving the city. He will be the new part-time director of development.

        “I'm glad he's staying with us, continuing with planning and zoning work, as the city zoning enforcement officer and working in economic development,” Mr. Whitman said. “Still, I'm losing a stabilizing force. He's been an asset to me, in helping me understand the processes and the way things are done here.”

        The commercial and residential growth in the city off Interstate 75, straddling the Butler and Warren county lines, prompted officials last year to launch a search for an engineer. The search was unsuccessful, largely because the proposed salary range of $34,305 to $44,000 was too low to attract experienced candidates, officials said.

        But in June, City Council raised the pay range to $44,000 to $60,000. And Mr. Stewart's decision spurred the city into immediate action to hire a successor, Mr. Whitman said.

        Mr. Brock, the top candidate among about 40 applicants and the 10 interviewed last year, will be on the high end of the pay scale because of his experience and the dual role, Mr. Whitman said.

        Mr. Brock said he is eager to get started.

        “I'm ready for the challenge,” Mr. Brock said. “I'll be in a smaller city with greater responsibilities. I think being assistant city manager will allow me to deal more closely with some of the issues that face a city. I'll be able to see projects through from start to finish, have more of an understanding of how things work. ... I'm sure it will keep me on my toes.”

        Mr. Brock's duties will vary, but a primary focus will be engineering work such as subdivision inspections — checking to see that roadways and sewer lines are being installed properly, and reviewing developer's plans.

        Mayor Elbert Tannreuther said losing Mr. Stewart as a full-time employee is a major loss.

        “Jay's sharp. He's been a terrific asset,” Mr. Tannreuther said. “The only good thing is he's agreed to stay on in a part-time capacity. He's been so involved in all the projects we have in the city, we need him around.”


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