Archive for Thursday, October 23, 2003

Basehor job attractive to candidates, League says

Proximity to metropolitan areas could prove influential for those vying for administrator role

October 23, 2003

The city of Basehor could see 60 or more candidates submit resumes with hopes of becoming the first city administrator in the history of Basehor government.

"I think in the 60s is probably within range," said Mark Tomb, a representative from the League of Kansas Municipalities. "I think, potentially, you could have a pretty large pool of candidates because (the city) is close to a major metropolitan area.

"The nature of this location will probably invite even more than a statewide search," he added.

Basehor, with easy access to metropolitan Kansas City, Johnson County, Lawrence and Topeka, would be an attractive prospect for city administrators, Tomb said.

The city's population is 2,513, according to the most recent census, and it is listed as the fifth-fastest growing community in Kansas. A city administrator would run the day-to-day operations of the city and oversee 27 employees and a $4.3 million budget.

During a work session Monday, Oct. 20, members of the Basehor City Council discussed the procedure for hiring a city administrator with Tomb, whom the city hired to help coordinate the search for a candidate to fill the position.

Advertising for the position is set to begin in coming weeks with a closing date of Dec. 1.

Although Basehor is expected to receive numerous applications, the number of candidates that interview for the position will be pared down to approximately 20 or so, Tomb said.

The interviews will be important for both the candidates and the city; those discussions could begin as soon as Dec. 8 and run through Dec. 13.

"They need to interview you as much as you interview them," Tomb said. "It needs to be the right fit for both of you."

The earliest date a city administrator would take the reins in Basehor is Jan. 15 or possibly Feb. 1, City Council members said Monday night.

City Council members agreed on three attributes candidates must possess to be considered for the new position. They are strong planning, administrative and public relations skills.

At this point, it seems almost assured Basehor will hire a city administrator. A point of discussion, however, is the salary for the position.

In its 2004 budget, $65,000 is allocated toward a city administrator's salary. Advertising for the position lists the salary ranging between $50,000 and $65,000.

"Within the $50,000 to $65,000 range, you'll certainly have qualified people apply," Tomb said.

A final decision on salary requirements and benefits will be negotiated when the position is offered to one of the candidates, City Council members agreed.

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