Thursday, May 20, 2004

Villa Hills votes to hire part-time administrator



By Cindy Schroeder
The Cincinnati Enquirer

VILLA HILLS - This Kenton County suburb might hire a part-time administrator by summer's end to help ensure the city is responsive to residents' concerns.

Villa Hills City Council voted 4-2 to create the position at a special meeting Tuesday. Council has set aside $40,000 for the job, including use of a cell phone, for the budget year that begins July 1, Mayor Mike Sadouskas said.

The administrator would oversee daily operations, would work 16 to 32 hours a week and also would oversee projects.

The mayor said he has heard from a couple of people who are interested in the job. Police Chief Michael "Corky" Brown, who has been juggling day-to-day administrative duties along with his job as chief for more than a year, said that he plans to apply.

"I don't see that there's an immediate rush to fill the position," Sadouskas said. He added the city will consider outside candidates as well as in-house applicants.

Since assigning Brown extra duties, "projects are being done more quickly, and the city is getting more work done overall," Sadouskas said. However, he said, the work is a lot for one person.

Sadouskas said the position also is being created in response to issues raised during the last city election two years ago.

"Part of what came out of that discussion was ways to improve our response time and communication with citizens," Sadouskas said.

Council members Bob Kramer and Ed Niewahner voted against creating the administrator's job.

Kramer said Villa Hills has had a full-time and a part-time administrator under a previous administration, but there wasn't enough to keep them busy.

"Nothing has changed since we tried this experiment before. It's the same population, the same minimal tax base," Kramer said.

He said he thinks the $40,000 expenditure "could be put to better use." He also questioned the wisdom of creating a part-time administrator's job when city officials are debating whether to put a property tax increase on the November ballot to get the city's streets in top shape.

Sadouskas said any proposed street tax will be judged on its own merits. He said he thinks there will be enough work to justify the position, as existing staff is already juggling administrative duties.

"I just think we're a vastly different city than we were five years ago," Sadouskas said.

E-mail cschroeder@enquirer.com




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