The search for an interim city manager for Powder Springs is underway.
City Manager Rick Eckert, who started in May 2010 on a two-year contract at $115,000 annually, gave his two-week notice to the City Council at last week’s special called meeting, Councilman Chris Wizner confirmed to Patch.
“He’s done a good job. We had really no issues with his performance,” Wizner said, adding that Eckert will be leaving for family reasons.
Calls to Eckert since last week’s special meeting have not been returned.
Another finalist was picked for the Jackson job; as the sole finalist, Eckert turned down the Butts position; and he wasn’t picked in La Plata County, Colorado after being named the sole finalist there.
He withdrew his name from McDonough’s city administrator position earlier this week, McDonough Mayor Billy Copeland told Patch. Eckert had a “pretty good resume” and was “highly qualified” among the four finalists, he said.
But when Eckert noticed a friend was another one of the finalists, he withdrew his name, saying that his friend is someone he would pick himself, Copeland said.
If needed, Eckert will serve as a consultant for Powder Springs until May, when his contract is up, Wizner said.
The search for the interim city manager is in the “early search stage,” with a few possibilities out there, Wizner said, adding that someone taking over the role is needed “fairly quickly.”
The city will then begin a national search for a permanent city manager, Wizner said.
Former Councilman Tom Bevirt, who was replaced by Wizner as a result of November’s elections and attended his last meeting in late December, said the council was “not entirely pleased with his performance in the past few months.”
Bevirt said Eckert started with “high hopes” and “somehow or the other, he faltered towards the end.”
“Like any other employment situation when somebody decides to leave, that affects their performance for the job they’re at,” he said.
When Eckert began with Powder Springs in May 2010, he had to hurriedly prepare the budget that began two months later. He also helped the city prepare the current budget with no layoffs, furloughs or tax increases.
In an evaluation from last fall, City Council members recognized that Eckert spent “a great deal of time and attention” in the investigation into Richardson, as well as the hiring of the new chief and public works director.
Before Eckert, Vaughn had been acting city manager since November 2008, when City Manager Charles Nickerson was placed on leave and eventually fired, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution says.
Vaughn also held the job on an interim basis from December 2005, after Dane Perry left, until Nickerson was hired in April 2007.