OUR VIEW: City in need of permanent leader

Five candidates interviewed.

Two offers extended.

However, the city of Manistee remains without a permanent leader.

Patrick Jordan, city council’s first choice, instead accepted an offer for the position of administrator with Wexford County.

Next, council extended an offer to Kevin Bookout and began contract negotiations and background checks.

Late last week, the News Advocate was told that a tentative contract agreement had been reached between the two parties. On Wednesday, Bookout withdrew his application for “personal reasons.”

With a third candidate accepting a position elsewhere, it seems council’s best option is to go back to the drawing board.

According to Mayor Colleen Kenny the city has several options, including a second look at the original pool of 39 candidates.

But residents deserve a full-time leader … sooner rather than later. It has been six months since Manistee City Council voted to terminate then-city manager Mitch Deisch’s contract.

City council then named Ben Bifoss interim manager on March 31, two weeks after Deisch was ousted.

We are grateful for Mr. Bifoss’ service. He has gone above and beyond what is expected of an interim manager. His efforts are appreciated.

We realize that the current circumstances are beyond city council’s control and that the process of finding the right person to run the city should not be rushed by any means. Yet city council should not wait two more weeks until the next meeting before taking action.

A special meeting is in order to determine the next steps in the process of selecting a new city manager, especially if the city is back at square one.

We hope city council can be the delegates that the residents of our city elected them to be and that their search for a new city manager will yield a positive result.

Is the third time the charm?

One comment on “OUR VIEW: City in need of permanent leader

Leave a Reply