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Council okays search process

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At their Feb. 6 meeting, Village Council members agreed to hire Don Vermillion of the University of Dayton as consultant for the Village manager search process. Vermillion served as the Village Council search consultant during the process that resulted in the hiring of current Village Manager Mark Cundiff, and that was a productive experience, Council members agreed.

“I thought it was a good process,” Council President Judith Hempfling said.

The cost for Vermillion’s consultant services will be $10,000, which is the same cost as the previous process almost four years ago.

Council members verbally agreed to move ahead with Vermillion’s proposal, although they did not vote at this meeting. Village Solicitor John Chambers will draw up a resolution and they will vote at an upcoming meeting.

According to the proposal from Vermillion, the process will begin when he meets with Council to discuss the scope of the project, anticipating that the search will take four to six months. He would also review with Council the Village manager position profile that was developed for the previous search, and determine if changes are needed. Next, he would advertise the position in venues such as the Ohio City/County Management Association online bulletin, along with other sources approved by Council. He would also obtain background information on applicants, working with the interim Village manager and police department.

Vermillion will screen applications, involving Council in the process to the level desired, and will assist Council in conducting interviews. The previous interview process for finalists involved bringing the three finalists to town for most of a day, first having lunch with villagers, a tour of the village, an interview with Council, and in the evening a public forum.

Cundiff, who will leave at the end of February for his new job as manager of Sidney, Ohio, will be replaced by interim Village manager Laura Curliss, an attorney from Wilmington who worked for six years as assistant to that city’s mayor. She graduated from undergraduate and law school at the University of Notre Dame, and also received a masters in divinity from Yale University.

A difference between the current search process and the previous one is that previously Interim Village Manager John Weithofer made clear he had no interest in the permanent position, so he was deeply involved in the search process, Hempfling said. Because Curliss has not taken herself out of the running for the permanent position, she would not be involved in the search process.

In other Village business:

• Council unanimously approved the first reading of the 2012 Village budget. The vote came after five reviews of this year’s budget, beginning in November and ending last month. The second and final vote will take place at Council’s next meeting on Feb. 20.

• Council unanimously passed a motion to enter into a licensing agreement that allows the Yellow Springs Arts Council rent-free use of office space for up to two years. The space in question is a third-floor office, currently used as storage, which is different than the second-floor arts room that the Arts Council previously requested. The group is satisfied with the third-floor space, according to YSAC representative Joanne Caputo at the meeting.

Other items of Feb. 6 business will be in next week’s paper.


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