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City manager search six times more expensive than originally budgeted

The Sunnyside City Council approved a resolution authorizing the mayor to enter into an agreement with Colin Baenziger & Associates to find and recruit a new city manager for the city.

The firm, of which Interim City Manager John Darrington is a vice president, has agreed to do the search for $15,000, more than $5,000 below what it normally charges for such a search. The reduction is due to the ability of the firm to use Darrington to conduct much of the information gathering as part of the regular course of his job as interim city manager.

All expenses of the search will be paid by the firm except for travel costs for candidates and their spouses for final interviews.

Colin Baenziger & Associates has a two-year guarantee for all city managers recruited. Darrington said most city managers remain on the job for between four and six years.

According to the timeline presented by Darrington, the council would make a decision on the new city manager on July 1 with the new manager taking the position by Aug. 1 of this year.

As part of the proposal, the city has been offered a second search to find a finance officer for the city at a fee of $12,000. The offer was not authorized at the meeting but Darrington suggested starting the hunt for the financial officer about a month after starting the search for a city manager.

The council unanimously approved signing a contract for the city manager search. The amount originally budgeted for 2013 for city manager recruitment was $2,500.

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