City reorganization continues

Published 5:25 pm Monday, June 25, 2012

The reorganization of city government under City Manager Josh Kay continues.
In February, Kay outlined a reorganization proposal that could save the city $1.2 million annually, but result in some city employees losing their jobs. The key component of the reorganization is improving city services, Kay told the Washington City Council in February.
In a press release, Kay announced the appointments of three people to new positions created within the reorganization plan. The appointments become official Monday.
“I am excited about the announcement of these individuals to their new positions within the City of Washington organization. They each bring a wealth of knowledge and experience that will continue to move our organization forward in the future. I believe that they each are the right fit for these positions and will allow us to continue to evaluate our reorganization plan and its impacts on the services to our customers and citizens,” Kay said in the release.
John Rodman, the city’s director of planning and community development, will become the interim Community and Cultural Services director. With his new position, Rodman will oversee the city’s planning, inspections, library and parks and recreation divisions.
Matt Rauschenbach, the city’s chief financial officer since 2009, will become Administrative Services director. He will supervise the finance, customer-service, information-technology, purchasing and human-resources divisions.
Kristi Hardison, the city’s recreation events and facilities manager since 2008, was named the Parks and Recreation manager. Hardison will oversee all operations within the Parks and Recreation division, including the Senior Center, Hildred T. Moore Aquatics and Fitness Center, events and facilities and the Washington docks.
The reorganization would occur during a three-year transition period, giving the council and city officials enough time to implement the plan and modify it if needed, Kay said in February.
In addition to cutting annual operational expenses by at least $1.2 million, implementing the plan would create efficiencies in city government by combining “like” resources to allow greater flexibility in providing services to the public and providing shared support services in similar departments, according to the plan. Under the plan the city would fully analyze the services it offers to eliminate those services that are not fully or efficiently utilized or expand services that are most important to the city’s residents and customers, according to the proposal.
The proposal would combine existing city departments into four departments: police and fire services, community and cultural services, public services and administrative services. The reorganization would focus the city’s resources into those four departments, according to the proposal.
Stacy Drakeford is serving as interim director of Police and Fire Services. He began his duties April 2.

About Mike Voss

Mike Voss is the contributing editor at the Washington Daily News. He has a daughter and four grandchildren. Except for nearly six years he worked at the Free Lance-Star in Fredericksburg, Va., in the early to mid-1990s, he has been at the Daily News since April 1986.
Journalism awards:
• Pulitzer Prize for Meritorious Public Service, 1990.
• Society of Professional Journalists: Sigma Delta Chi Award, Bronze Medallion.
• Associated Press Managing Editors’ Public Service Award.
• Investigative Reporters & Editors’ Award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Public Service Award, 1989.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Investigative Reporting, 1990.
All those were for the articles he and Betty Gray wrote about the city’s contaminated water system in 1989-1990.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Investigative Reporting, 1991.
• North Carolina Press Association, Third Place, General News Reporting, 2005.
• North Carolina Press Association, Second Place, Lighter Columns, 2006.
Recently learned he will receive another award.
• North Carolina Press Association, First Place, Lighter Columns, 2010.
4. Lectured at or served on seminar panels at journalism schools at UNC-Chapel Hill, University of Maryland, Columbia University, Mary Washington University and Francis Marion University.

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