Geneva may bring back assistant administrator job

Posted1/30/2018 5:13 AM

Geneva will likely bring back the position of assistant city administrator, a post eliminated more than 1½ years ago.

Aldermen gave preliminary approval Monday night to the plan 6-2 at a committee meeting. They plan a binding vote Monday.


Aldermen Jim Radecki and Richard Marks voted "no." Aldermen Don Cummings and Jeanne McGowan were absent.

Geneva had an assistant city administrator from 1998 to June 2016, when it promoted then-assistant administrator Stephanie Dawkins to administrator. Aldermen then decided not to replace her.

Dawkins has said that without an assistant administrator, her time is consumed with overseeing day-to-day operations, including many of her former duties, with little left for strategic planning.

A consultant the city hired recommended in November hiring an assistant administrator or a director of administrative services. Such a person would perform much of the personnel-related duties Dawkins handles.

An assistant administrator would also become liaison to the Strategic Plan Advisor Committee, be the city's risk manager, negotiate contracts with union employees and oversee the information technology, human resources and finance divisions, among other tasks.

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Aldermen postponed a decision in November, wanting information on how Geneva compared to other towns and to discuss the position at a budget workshop. The council began discussing the 2018-19 and 2019-20 budgets Monday.

Radecki said an assistant administrator "would be a very nice thing to have."

But, "It is just a simple matter of economics to me right now. I don't think it is responsible to approve this kind of expenditure at this time."

He said the city recently approved pay-scale increases that will ultimately cost $1.5 million. And, he noted, the city is asking voters in March to increase its city sales tax, because it believes it needs more money,

Dawkins estimated it would cost about $150,000, in salary and benefits, for the position.

A check of 41 other suburbs, populations 3,178 to 41,178, showed that 34 of them have at least one assistant administrator or deputy village manager. Geneva has a population of 22,208.

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