Archive for Thursday, April 13, 2006

Fire chief search to heat up for fourth time

April 13, 2006

With Eudora City Council's self-imposed two-month hiatus on the search for a new fire chief expired, Eudora City Administrator Cheryl Beatty took no time to suggest what she thinks the council should do next.

It's time to try again.

In short discussion, the council agreed unanimously to open up the position for fire chief for three weeks.

The job will be posted in the newspapers and online and hopefully draw in more applicants, Beatty said. The job posting stands as the fourth search since the last full-time fire chief, Spencer McCabe, left in December 2004. It serves as the third official search since last August when Beatty began as administrator.

The previous attempt to find a chief only garnered two applications, and one of those came past the deadline.

Beatty said she would be sure to contact the applicant who sent in the application on time.

"I'll request he get me an updated resume. We'll make sure he has a current one on record," Beatty said. "If there's anything he wants updated, we'll make sure it gets included."

The scarcity of applications moved Councilman Bill Whitten to ask if the council would interview the applicant who did apply if as little or no more applications were sent.

Beatty seemed leery of the idea.

"I wouldn't recommend it," Beatty said.

Eudora Mayor Tom Pyle said he had yet to see the application in question.

In a written report to the council, Beatty listed options concerning filling the fire chief position.

Among her options were for the council to do nothing and retain Deputy Fire Chief Mike Underwood in the position, defer to the mayor to make an appointment, or reopen the job posting.

Jared Reeves observed the discussion for the Awareness Coalition of Eudora.

"I think it's a little odd it takes three tries to get a fire chief," Reeves said.

Given publication time and processing, the next official discussion concerning the position would probably be during the May 22 city council meeting, Beatty said.

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