HUTCHINSON, Kan. — Hutchinson Vice-Mayor Greg Fast said the executive session the City Council held on Friday was productive in narrowing down the field of permanent city manager candidates.
"We had 45 applicants for the city manager position in Hutchinson," Fast said. "Quite frankly, we've drug our feet a little bit, because we really like what Mary Grace is doing in kind of getting some of the culture where we want it with our city employees, so we haven't been in a big hurry. We had about 10 people we were discussing on Friday afternoon. We've narrowed that down to four."
Those four were to be notified of their finalist status on Monday and asked to come to Hutchinson for an in person interview.
"What I can tell you is, there's a couple from the area," Fast said. "There's a couple not from the area. The two not from this area do have a regional connection. For good reason, they want to be the city manager of Hutchinson. We're going to see what those four have to say. Hopefully, they will all accept the offer for an interview and we'll move forward with that search. I suspect we'll start those interviews in two to three weeks."
Even when they make an offer, it will still be some time before the new person is here.
"Most of them want to give 30 to 60 days notice," Fast said. "I think all but one are currently working in that capacity. The one thing I've learned in the two years that I've been involved in city government is nothing happens very fast. It's very frustrating. I know there's three of us on the council right now that have small businesses. We just make decisions and get things done. It doesn't always work that way in government. We're trying to change that, but there's value in taking our time and doing it right."
Mary Grace Clements took the interim post in late May 2023.