Hanover updated about administrator process

The Hanover City Council heard from interim administrator Bob Derus about the next steps for city administrator recruitment.

Derus said the current direction is that there may not be an administrator recruitment process. He said his role would be diminished as other staff gets trained in.

For example, he said accountant/deputy clerk Annita Smythe would be promoted to city clerk/assistant administrator.

“The council talked about it, and that recommendation will be on the next agenda,” Derus said in a later interview. “(Smythe) is going to be looked at as more and more taking on a leadership role, with me helping in the training.”

Derus said he would be less of a hands on administrator “and more just going to staff meetings and council meetings.”

He also said the proposal is for present intern Brian Hagen to be hired as an administrative assistant. Hagen is obtaining a master’s degree in public administration from Minnesota State University-Mankato.

Right now Derus is working 30 to 35 hours per week in the interim role. He said after May 1 his hours would go down substantially, to about 10, as Smythe and Hagen assume more of the duties. Derus has been working in Hanover since about August, after former administrator Dan Buccholtz took another job.

Meantime, he said he would continue to train Smythe and Hagen.

“There will be a time where things are just fine, from a staff perspective,” he said. “We need a plan so the council understands I’ll still be involved. Both (Smythe) and (Hagen) have a lot of natural leadership skills. They have a lot of potential and demonstrated they can be part of steering the city in a positive direction.”

In other action at the council workshop, the council:

HEARD from Wright County Sheriff Joe Hagerty. Hagerty shared that Hanover continues to have a very low crime rate. The city contracts with Wright and Hennepin sheriffs for coverage.

HEARD that staff is putting together a pavement management plan, including setting a road repair schedule and proposing an assessment policy.