FULTON, Ill. — It’s back to the drawing board for the city of Fulton, as officials have decided to reopen the search for a new city administrator.
At a Fulton City Council meeting Monday, Mayor Larry Russell and council members met in an executive session to discuss what the future would hold for the city and what the next step for the city should be.
“Basically we didn’t want to compromise the process that we’ve put in so we said let’s reboot, take a look at another short list and go from there,” Mayor Larry Russell said.
Russell, a council executive committee and a citizens’ task force that Russell appointed have been working for the last three months to narrow down a search for a new city administrator to replace current administrator Randy Balk.
Balk announced his retirement in the spring; since, the city has been on the hunt to find a suitable replacement by the end of October.
When the city opened the position to the public, it received received more than 40 applications, and over the course of the three months narrowed the field down to five final candidates in September.
Unfortunately, the candidate the city felt would fit the position did not work out.
“We did have, what I call, a consensus all-American candidate and unfortunately lost that candidate, we believe to a larger city, another competitor who can out bid us,” Russell said. “After that, the other four finalists, we simply could not come to a consensus on anyone.”
Russel, the executive committee and the citizens’ task force will now dive back into the selection process to begin searching for another candidate for the city administrator position. For the time being, Russell will secure interim assistance until a new selection process can be completed.
The group will seek recommendations on possible candidates that may now be available and go back to square one, but Russell feels confident the council will be successful in the next leg of the selection process.
“We’re still very close as a mayor and a council,” Russell said. “We’re not split in any way, we just do not have a consensus candidate. We expect the process will take another month.”