Scottsdale City Council pass on city manager finalists

Scottsdale City Council will continue the search to find the municipality’s next city manager after declining to make an offer to any of the three finalists interviewed for the job yesterday.

Scottsdale City Council at a special meeting Thursday, June 16 directed staff to conduct a second recruitment.

Jim Lane

Jim Lane

“Ultimately we could not reach consensus on any of the finalists, so we will continue the search,” said Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane in a June 17 press release.

“The finalists are all experienced and effective public managers, and we sincerely thank them for their interest in Scottsdale and the amount of time they spent speaking with us.”

The finalists were: Jim Colson, city manager of the city of Topeka, Kan.; Jeffery M. Nichols, Scottsdale city treasurer; and Orlando L. Sanchez, deputy city manager of the city of Las Vegas.

Brian K. Biesemeyer, Scottsdale’s water director, will continue serving as acting city manager, a post he has held since June 2015 after then-City Manager Fritz Behring took extended medical leave.

With a super-majority vote March 1, Scottsdale City Council severed employment ties with Mr. Behring, who was then on a nine-month hiatus as a result from a stroke he fell victim too during a June 2015 city council meeting.

According to Mr. Behring’s 2013 employment contract, a super majority vote of the governing body — a vote of five or more — precludes the city from paying Mr. Behring’s severance, which would have equated to six months of his $205,000 base salary.

However, Scottsdale City Council earlier this year voted to provide Mr. Behring with 565 hours of additional medical leave that equates to a dollar value of $57,400 to help with medical costs before entering into long-term disability coverage last December, Independent archives state.

The city of Scottsdale then hired The Mercer Group with a contract for $25,000 to handle the now failed city manager recruitment process.

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