CNB Point of View:
A TIP was received suggesting that the City of Gloucester City has a new administrator. Following the lead I contacted several members of City Council and was told that no one has been appointed. That there were 8 people that applied for the job and the selection had been narrowed down to a select few. A further meeting with those individuals will be held this weekend. Mayor and Council are expected to appoint the new administrator this coming week.
I have high expectations for this person, whoever is appointed. The fact that the final applicants all have a Master’s degree is a big plus. Gloucester City is facing some tough decisions in 2009. For example how to keep taxes from increasing and at the same time maintain services. Then there is the ongoing contract negotiation with the Police Chief, the Deputy Chief and the union that represents the police department rank and file. In 2009 the contract for the fire department is up for negotiation. Also the individual must oversee the redevelopment of the King Street Corridor, Freedom Pier, the Broadway corridor, and the Chatham Square Apartment complex.
The list doesn’t stop there but you get the idea.
I am also pleased to learn the applicants that remain have no ties to Gloucester City and or to the local Democrat Club. One of the problems that have kept the past City Administrator (s) from making tough decisions was family ties to a City employee or employees. For example we left someone in the position of assistant superintendent, even though the job wasn’t needed, just because he was a relative of the “Gorman dynasty”. Once he retired from his $60,000 plus job the position was left unfilled.
I commend Mayor Bill James and city council on this progressive move. Previous administrations seem to be stuck in the past. It is comforting to see new leadership that realizes the management of the day to day operation of this community needs a qualified person at the top. The time has come to treat the operation of the City as if it were a business.