By Sean Rice
A Celina City Council committee will further review a proposed contract to hire a replacement for the vacant community development department, before council approves a plan laid-out by Mayor Sharon LaRue.
Some council members expressed confusion Monday night over a contract presented by the mayor that would hire Kent Bryan of Celina as a part-time community development director/city engineer, because the community development duties were not spelled out in the contract.
“To be honest, I’m really confused as to exactly what we’re doing here,” council member Rick Bachelor said. “The ordinance states we’re hiring a community development director, but this contract is a general consulting agreement to hire an engineer.
“When you combine those two jobs, something gets lost ... we need to discuss that before we jump in with both feet on this,” he continued.
The agreement changed slightly from the original proposal. Bryan, a brother of council member Collin Bryan, no longer works for the engineering consultants Fanning/Howey Associates of Celina, LaRue said.
The proposed contract states Kent Bryan would work a minimum of 20 hours per week at a contracted rate of $4,800 per month. LaRue said there are no extra benefits with the position.
The contract is the result of LaRue dismissing community development director Sue Canary last week, and announcing Safety-Service Director Mike Sovinski will be replaced.
The mayor said the intent of the agreement is to hire a part-time community development director, who is also an engineer and can provide those services.
Council member Denny Smith noted the contract says “engineer” numerous times but nowhere does it state “community development director.” And, the contract doesn’t state Kent Bryan will handle annexations, local business relations, downtown revitalization or the other duties associated with community development.
“Why don’t we just change the whole thing to ´engineer,’ ” suggested council member Ron Hammons.
The contract was presented as an emergency ordinance, which would have allowed the contract to take effect after the first council vote. Because of the confusion on the issue, members ignored the emergency clause and voted it to a second reading, with a “no” vote from Hammons and Collin Bryan abstaining.
“I know what the intent is, so I’m comfortable with it,” LaRue said of the contract before the vote.
Member Angie King said she supports hiring Kent Bryan and reviewing the salary and job description near December, when the agreement would end.
In another matter, an ordinance was passed allowing Sovinski to seek bids for a new trash hauling and recycling contract for the city.
Complaints about recyclable material being mixed with trash should be remedied, Sovinski said, because the new contract will be worded differently.
Celina is currently under an exclusive contract with Waste Management, a leading national hauler. The contract expires in July.
The city also signed a new contract giving a Cridersville company exclusive rights to sell the city’s defunct power plant, know locally as “The Blue Goose.” The agreement states broker Mike Flory will pay the city $1,000 for the right to sell and remove the building and all the machinery inside.
“Within six months the deal will be done,” Sovinski said.
In other business, members set committee meetings for:
┤ Wednesday, 5 p.m., personnel and finance committee.
┤ Friday, 4:30 p.m., community betterment.
┤ Monday, 7 p.m., streets and alleys.
┤ March 16, 5 p.m., utilities.
┤ March 18, noon, community betterment.