The city of Union hasn’t received any applications for its open city engineer position after advertising it for three weeks.
City Administrator Jonathan Zimmermann has been handling the city engineer duties along with his job as administrator. He was promoted from city engineer to city administrator after a search for a replacement for Russell Rost.
“We were hoping to get the city engineer hired,” Zimmermann said at a Monday, Oct. 12, board of aldermen meeting. “That will affect the qualifications for the public works director.”
The public works director job, which reports to the city engineer, has been vacant since former Public Works Director Kayla Stephens resigned March 16, just before a special closed session board of aldermen meeting was planned to discuss her status. The meeting was then canceled.
Rost said at the time that he could not give any reasons for her resignation after 15 months on the job.
The public works director position is responsible for the day-to-day management of the city’s water, wastewater and street maintenance operations.
Adding to the potential employee turnover in the public works department, a mechanic is retiring soon, Zimmermann said.
The turnover is a change from the long-stable leadership the public works department previously had.
Zimmermann was city engineer for 20 years.
Stephens replaced Harold Lampkin, who retired in September 2018 after 45 years with the city. The last 15 of those were as Union’s first public works director.
According to an ad from the city that appeared in The Missourian, Union is seeking a “multi-talented individual” for the city engineer position. The position, which reports to the mayor, board of aldermen and city staff, manages the city’s building and engineering department.
The city is seeking someone with a professional background, including five years of “increasingly responsible experience” of management and leadership in a municipal public works department.
The ad says a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering is preferred, and a state professional engineer license is required. The starting salary is dependent on education and experience level.