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City Manager Resigns

Zimmerman accepts similar position in Hazelwood, Mo.

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Posted: Thursday, September 19, 2013 10:50 am

City Manager Matt Zimmerman resigned Wednesday evening during the Emporia City Commission action session.

After the commission returned from executive session, Zimmerman gave his notice of resignation.

“Dear Mayor Gilligan and city commissioners, please accept my notice of resignation as city manager for the city of Emporia,” Zimmerman said. “I had the opportunity to further my career and have accepted the city manager position in Hazelwood, Mo. I have enjoyed my time working with and for the citizens of Emporia, and while I am excited about a new career opportunity, I am leaving Emporia with some sadness.

“The elected officials and employees have a true dedication for the residents of Emporia that has made this job a pleasure. In accordance with section 12(b) of my employment agreement, I am providing 30 days notice. I am planning to work through Oct. 24. This will provide me with time to complete several projects, including design and bidding of the far west water and sewer main projects, implement the city commission’s goals, and dispatch consolidation. Once again, thank you for a wonderful professional opportunity. I wish the city and its residents all the best.”

Mayor Rob Gilligan said he thanked Zimmerman for his kind words, and the commission accepted his notice without objection.

“Good luck with the opportunity and on behalf of the commission and the citizens, we appreciate the time and effort that you’ve given the city of Emporia for the past six and a half years, and we wish you good luck in this opportunity in Hazelwood,” Gilligan said.

Zimmerman worked out an agreement with Hazelwood’s consultant late Friday afternoon, Zimmerman said. He starts his new position Oct. 30.

“I have been looking for a while for some of those opportunities to be closer to home while still being a real good job,” he said. “This fits the bills for my wife (Valerie Zimmerman) and I very much, so we are really excited even though we are leaving Emporia ... with a tinge of sadness.”

Zimmerman was the city administrator of Prospect Heights, Ill., before he was sworn in as the Emporia city manager on April 18, 2007.

He was a finalist for the Janesville, Wis., city manager opening in August, but the Janesville City Council went in another direction in its hiring process.

Hazelwood has a population of 25,703, which is 787 more than Emporia as of 2010, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The Missouri town is a suburb of St. Louis.

The commission will discuss over the next few weeks about choosing an interim city manager, Gilligan said.

“I would bet that probably by our action session on Oct. 2, the commission will probably identify an interim structure to continue things on after (Oct. 24),” he said.

In other business, the commission:

Approved the consent agenda. This action approved the Sept. 4 meeting minutes, approved the August budget report, ratified payroll ordinance for the period ending Sept. 6, changed plans for the construction of 18th Avenue and Industrial sidewalk project by decreasing the original bid amount from $31,076 to $29,243.40 and authorized the submittal of the economic development grant to the Kansas Department of Transportation to construct Warren Way in Industrial Park III. The estimated construction for Warren Way cost is $950,000, and the city has a match of $237,500 toward the project from the industrial development sales tax fund.

Recognized the Crop Walk on Sept. 29, the Clean Sweep weekend on Sept. 27 to 28, October as Red Cross National Preparedness Month and the Emporia Kiwanis Club for 90 years of service in Emporia.

Honored Eagle Scout Kieran Forsythe of the Boy Scouts of America.

Awarded the bid of $199,950 to CAS Constructors LLC for the water clarifier repair project at the Emporia Water Treatment Plant.

Awarded the bid of $329,136.09 to APAC Kansas Inc. — Shears Division — for the 2013 paving resurface project. The commission removed the paving of Riley Avenue, $23,197.48, from the bid. The project includes the paving of the Trusler Sports Complex parking lot, $156,733.73; Trusler Road $80,481.19; and Overlander Road, $91,921.17.

Adopted the 2013 standard traffic ordinance.

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Welcome to the discussion.


  • methusla posted at 6:19 am on Wed, Sep 25, 2013.

    methusla Posts: 555

    By the way MprBwHntr67, The City Commission, when considering Budget matters, is greatly influenced by the City Manager, since the City Manager serves as an advisor to the City Commission on all matters of City Business, as well as other outside organizations and individuals, who seem to have a great amount of influence on the City Commissioners, as a whole or individually.

    Perhaps it would serve you better to attend more City Commission meetings, especially, if it has to do with matters of the City Budget and how tax dollars are being spent !

    Myself and others used to attend almost every public City Commission meeting that dealt with the City Budget and how and where our tax dollars were being spent/used.

    However, myself and others began to realize that it did no good to attend and offer our objections or approval on HOW, WHERE and ON WHAT "OUR" tax dollars were being spent. I/we realized that the City Commission/Commissioners mindes were already set/make up as to where OUR money/tax dollars were to be spent, squandered/wasted in some cases.

    Even though the City Commission ask's for public input on the City budget, fact is they really do not want public input, only if you happen to be certain members of certain public circles.[sad]

  • methusla posted at 10:29 am on Tue, Sep 24, 2013.

    methusla Posts: 555


    Do you for one minute believe, if the school district or any County entity that wants increase in their their mil levy that mil levy increase will not affect any property tax payer in the City of Emporia?

    FYI, a property tax mil levy increase by the City of Emporia does not affect those who live/own property in the County only. However such is not the case with a County Wide mil levy increase. Such a County increase will affect those who own property and live in the City of Emporia as well.

    And if it had not been for some vigilant Emporia citizen taxpayers the rocks would have been paid for with tax funds from other sources, other than the hotel tax!!

    Do you have any idea what the meaning/definition of "MIL LEVY" is?

    Definition of 'Mill Levy '
    The assessed property tax rate used by local governments and other jurisdictions to raise revenue in order to cover annual expenses. The mill levy is calculated by determining how much revenue each taxing jurisdiction will need for the upcoming year, then dividing that projection by the total value of the property within the area, and finally adding up the rate from each jurisdiction to get the mill levy for the entire area.

    Yes, I am a bit bitter with all of our so called leaders and their decisions. Anyone with any common sense would be dissatisfied with the spending and taxing policies of our so called leaders and the leaders who are influencing them.

    As far as this public forum, I believed served me well to get my message to the people and I did get out among the people to spread my message of responsible and sensible government.

    And if you followed the election results, I and others believe I did quite well for not having a large campaign budget to work with.

  • MprBwHntr67 posted at 2:56 pm on Sat, Sep 21, 2013.

    MprBwHntr67 Posts: 1

    Methusla, the items you listed as unnecessary spending are mostly projects of the school district (turf, EMS addition) and are not under the city's taxing authority or spending control. The entrance rocks were paid for out of a fund that gets its money from hotel tax. Unless you stayed the night at the comfort inn, you didn't pay any for those rocks. And I believe the aquatic center was done before Mr Zimmerman was in charge. And the city commission sets the budget and how the city's money is spent. Blame is more effective when it is placed correctly. You just sound bitter and it makes your arguments not credible. Your idea as using this as a platform to get elected isn't working.


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