Boomer could become next administrator

Sunday Times Newspapers

ALLEN PARK – Allen Park’s city administrator search might be over, and the candidate is someone well known to City Hall staff.

Mayor William Matakas Tuesday announced his intention to recommend Interim City Administrator Dave Boomer to move into the position vacated by John Zech in May full-time.

Matakas said a search that included reaching out to the the Michigan Municipal League, retired administrators of other cities, and area universities and corporations, but the city’s likelihood of being assigned an emergency financial manager made it unattractive to prospective candidates.

“We put out a pretty wide net,” Matakas said. “A number of them rejected it because they just didn’t want to work as hard as the job requires. Those that knew it was a full-time job just couldn’t see coming in here under the likelihood that an emergency manager would terminate their employment.”

Boomer is to perform the job while keeping his building official, community development and economic development duties and the search for a full-time administrator is to continue. His salary, now $75,000 per year, is to be $85,000.

Boomer requested additional resources – that Human Resources Director Don Wood be made full-time and risk management and deputy administrative responsibilities be added to his plate and that the city hire two former building department employees to assist in that department. Wood’s salary, now $27 per hour, is to be $63,000.

The raises, and hiring of additional staff, were sticking points among some council members.

“We just talked about an emergency manager coming in,” Councilman Larry Templin said. “And we’re talking about spending more money we don’t have. We don’t have the money, but we want to keep adding to it.”

Councilman Dennis Hayes said he agrees with the additional support staff but thinks the increased wages are too high. Before his resignation in May, Zech earned $90,000 a year.

“We are in tough times and we can’t afford to replicate someone’s wage just because of the position,” Hayes said.

The city council is scheduled to vote on the issue during its meeting Tuesday.