As retirement or leaving a position announcements go, City Manager Jeff Mansfield’s July 1, 2019 departure from his job with the city is unusual and pretty low key.
As the last item on the City Council’s Monday agenda shows, Mansfield and Mayor David Tossava have been working of a transition plan for Mansfield leaving city employment for, “the last several months.” Mansfield said he, his wife, and the mayor, “have decided that this would be a good time for me to begin to work myself out of a job and move on to other things.”
He did not elaborate on what his future plans include.
Mansfield said this is was also a good time for the change for city department heads since all have some time in their current positions. He offered to help in any way possible, and committed to working for a transition that is as smooth and efficient as possible.
One path to follow would include qualified internal candidates since they are often the most attractive candidates for promotion and leadership roles, he said. “The mayor and I have discussed at length how internal candidates may be fairly considered and treated during the selection process,” he said.
Jerry Czarnecki, city clerk/treasurer/finance director, has indicated that he wishes to be considered for the city manager’s position, Mansfield said.
Czarnecki has been with the city approximately 1 ½ years. Previously he spent 25 years with Kelloggsville schools as a math teacher and department head. He was community development director in Hastings before taking his current position.
Mansfield said Czarnecki adapted quickly to both roles and assuming leadership positions. He has a very positive relationship with the staff, council, regulatory and funding agencies and the community, Mansfield said. “Jerry has done a truly outstanding job during his time with the city.”
If the council selected Czarnecki as city manager, the city would have to hire someone for his current position, a process that would take four to six months, or more, to select, hire and train them.
Czarnecki could work with the new hire, and then work with Mansfield for a time before his departure. He recommended the council consider formally interviewing Czarnecki for the position at a workshop at 6 p.m. on July 9.
If Czarnecki is approved as a qualified candidate for the position, they would produce Letters of Agreement by July 23, outlining the transition process and what Mansfield and Czarnecki’s “roles and expectations” would be.
The process of hiring a new city clerk, treasurer/ finance director would begin immediately. That person would be expected to be hired by Nov. 1 and train with Czarnecki during November and December and take over the position on Jan.1, 2019. Czarnecki would then work with Mansfield as he transitions into the role of city manager when Mansfield leaves on July 1, 2019.
“If the city council wishes to pursue other options, we will identify a process for soliciting external candidates for the position of city manager,” Mansfield said.