By Scott Levine
The city of Clinton is one step closer to hiring a new city administrator.
A city search committee on Tuesday whittled down a pool of applicants from 17 to seven for a new city administrator.
The seven that made the final cut will be interviewed Monday and next Tuesday.
From there, the committee, which consists of community members and city employees, will forward recommendations to the Clinton City Council for a potential city administrator.
Search process leader and HR consultant Paul Greufe said there’s no set amount of applicants to recommend to the council.
“I want this group to say ‘we’d be happy with this many people,’” Greufe said. “So there’s no amount to the list.”
Getting to the seven applicants who will receive interviews did generate some discussion, thanks to Google searches by committee member Erin George.
By Googling some of the applicants’ names, George found some of the prospective city administrators were involved in litigation with former employers and unethical practices with public funds.
Along with those issues, George also wanted to avoid hiring applicants who have shown a pattern of quickly moving from job to job.
“I don’t want to invite that to this community,” George said.
Some committee members voiced concerns with the litigation, but wanted to find out more information regarding the situation.
One of the approximate three applicants moved on to the interview process that had concerns surface from a search through Google.
Committee members use a numbering process to showcase applicants, instead of providing names during the open meeting discussions. The interviews next week can be open, unless the applicants choose to be interviewed during closed session.
The city administrator position was vacated in November when Jeff Horne resigned at the request of the Clinton City Council. The council chose a different direction for choosing a city administrator by choosing 11 people to serve on a committee.
After search committee members discussed what they would like in a city administrator, ads were posted on Iowa League of Cities and International City/County Management Association websites as well as monster.com.