MENOMINEE - The Menominee City Council has selected an interim city manager to fill the gap until a full-time manager can be found to replace Michael Cramer who resigned last month. Cramer's last day is Oct. 16.
On a vote of 8-1 the council voted to hire Donald Beavers, who most recently served as village manager of Mackinaw City, Mich. Council member Mark Jasper was the lone dissenting vote.
"I feel if you're going for an interim city manager, you want someone with as much experience as you can get," said Jasper. "That's why I felt Mr. (Bill) Cousins was a better choice. You don't want a learning curve when you're going to have an interim city manager; you want him to come in an keep the ball rolling."
Members of the Judicial and Legislative/Personnel and Labor Committee met for nearly three hours Monday morning where they conducted extensive telephone interviews of both Beavers and Cousins.
The candidates were asked about their educational and managerial backgrounds, finance, community planning, major projects, their management style, etc. Following the interviews, committee members said they were pleased with both candidates but gave the edge to Beavers because he was able to start a couple weeks sooner and his requested salary was more in line with what the committee was comfortable with paying.
The council agreed with the committee to Beavers' salary request of $4,106 a month which includes base salary, pension, housing, mileage, insurance and certain meals. After the meeting, Mayor Jean Stegeman called Beavers with the news.
"He was quite pleased and we will iron out details later in the week," she said. "The city attorney will be instrumental in this being a smooth process. We were very lucky we had two highly qualified candidates."
When contacted at home by the EagleHerald, Beavers said he was excited to get the news and hopes to be an asset to the city. Beavers was in Menominee during the last manager search when Cramer was selected. Back then he finished in the top three and said he sees good things ahead for the city.
"I think the first thing that impressed me was that it gave me the impression of being a very progressive town," he said. "I think that Menominee is on the right course the way it is right now and I hope that as I get there I can just help keep things on an even keel until the new manager comes in."
Beavers said he also plans to have a positive relationship with the council, city staff and the community.
The council also approved minor changes to the job description for the new full-time city manager and agreed to set the salary between $70,000 and $80,000. Council Member Arnie Organ was the lone no vote on that salary issue.
The council will meet as a committee of the whole Wednesday when a representative from the Michigan Municipal League will help set the timeline for securing a new full-time city manager.