When Jason Ivie starts working for the city on Monday, he will become the fourth public works director in St. Clair in the last three years and the third City Administrator Rick Childers has helped hire in his almost three-year tenure here.
Mayor Ron Blum announced earlier this week that Ivie, who lives in the Lake St. Clair development just outside of the city limits, has accepted the job. He takes over for Ed Bliss, who resigned earlier this summer after an unexpected employment opportunity became available for his wife in Florida.
Other recent public works directors in St. Clair have been Brian Otten and Julia Mahurin.
“Jason is more than capable of doing the job,” Blum told his board of aldermen and department heads during a budget workshop meeting. “And he is a fast learner with a very level head on his shoulders.”
Ivie’s prior job was an engineer technician with the Missouri Department of Transportation. He was employed by MoDOT for about eight years.
His resume states that he “earned highly successful ratings on annual reviews for the past five years.”
“I think we have made a very good choice,” Blum said. “I’m confident he can handle any situation without getting rattled.”
One of those “situations” in which Blum was referring is the city’s wastewater system. Major work needs to be done on the aging system throughout the city, and officials currently are working on the 2014 budget that includes funding to put a dent in getting some of that needed work done. Some work will be done this year as well.
“I really feel Jason will be very beneficial to the city of St. Clair,” Blum said.
Childers said that when Ivie was called in for a second interview, “we were very blunt with him.”
“This is what you’re walking into,” Childers said about what Ivie was told during that interview. “He gave good answers. I was impressed.”
Ivie’s starting pay will be $52,000, Childers said. There will be incentives for him to earn a higher salary.
Currently, Ivie is not a licensed engineer, but through MoDOT he has eight-plus years of progressive civil engineering technician experience in roadway plan and document preparation.
“Throughout my career I have demonstrated the ability to establish excellent working relationships and been recognized for my strong job performance and being a team player,” his resume states.
In a nutshell, a public works director plans, organizes, directs and integrates a city’s public works and utilities activities and functions; provides assistance to city management in areas of expertise, including engineering, municipal water, wastewater collection and street and landscape maintenance; and performs related duties as required.
The salary range for the local position was advertised at $50,000 to $60,000. A bachelor of arts or science degree in civil engineering, construction management, business management or public administration was preferred. Direct management experience was required.
Ivie’s resume states that he is “skilled in a variety of areas.”
He is a 1994 St. Clair High School graduate and earned an associate of applied science degree in architectural drafting and design from the Lincoln Technical Institute in Indianapolis in 1997.
Bliss was hired about a year ago to replace Brian Otten, who resigned earlier last year. Otten replaced Julia Mahurin in February 2011.
Childers came on board as city administrator in January 2011.
When Otten was hired in 2011, Bliss and Ivie were the other finalists for the position at that time.