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Mon, Dec. 09

Council hires interim city manager

Former Paradise Valley town manager James Bacon has been hired to be the City of Kingman’s interim city manager through March 1 while the city seeks a permanent solution.
Miner/file

Former Paradise Valley town manager James Bacon has been hired to be the City of Kingman’s interim city manager through March 1 while the city seeks a permanent solution.

KINGMAN – James Bacon will be stepping in as interim city manager from Nov. 1 until March 1, at which time a permanent city manager is expected to be hired to replace John Dougherty.

City Council voted 7-0 to hire Bacon at Tuesday’s meeting, following up on an interview from Nov. 6. He’ll be paid $31,754 for 16 weeks.

Councilwoman Vickie Kress said Bacon’s contract was clearly written by Interim Public Management, the company that works with the city in providing the city manager.

She felt the contract had “vague generalities” that do little to protect the city and could hurt the city.

“It’s probably never going to happen, but I just wanted to voice my concern that this is not the best contract for the city,” Kress said.

Part of the contact authorizes purchases by the interim city manager for invoices if they’re not approved in a timely manner by the council, and Kress questioned if that was two hours or two weeks.

Human Resources Director Jackie Walker said she too expressed concern in some areas of the contract, but said the risk-to-loss ratio is extremely low and IPM has not been involved in contract litigation.

“This is a common contract used in cities and towns and he has a great reputation,” Walker said.

Bacon’s professional experience includes working as city manager in Puyallup, Washington, from 2001 to 2007, and as town manager in Paradise Valley from 2008 to 2015. He earned his bachelor’s degree in economics from St. Martin’s College in Washington, and an MBA from Seattle University.

Bacon is expected to spend a day with Dougherty before he leaves, and will begin full-time service on Dec. 4.

Dougherty’s contract was not renewed this year following an unfavorable performance evaluation, although many of Kingman’s citizens and city staff felt he was doing a good job.

They’ve supported him during comments at council meetings, Mohave Republican Forum meetings and in letters to The Daily Miner.

Kingman resident Sandee Samoska said the $25,000 payment to a recruitment firm to find a new city manager could have been better used toward paving El Trovatore Hill.

Dougherty was “too smart for the City Council, and he dared to disagree with their idiotic ideas,” Samoska wrote in the Daily Miner’s Community Viewpoint.

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