By Jim Newell
Village of Lake Orion Police Chief Jerry Narsh and Clerk Susan Galeczka will share the responsibilities of the village manager, at least on an interim basis.
The village council voted 6-0 on Thursday to use Narsh and Galeczka to fill the position until it selects a permanent replacement for current Village Manager Darwin McClary, who is leaving to take the helm in the City of Ypsilanti as the new city manager.
McClary’s last day as Lake Orion’s village manager is Feb. 24. He began as the fulltime village manager in July 2013, serving as interim village manager from April-June 2013.
There had been some discussion on whether the village should hire an outside candidate as the interim village manager, but ultimately dismissed that idea as too expensive.
Two candidates had applied for the interim manager’s position, but going with either candidate would have cost the village $1,500 per week in salary for 15 hours of work time. Each additional hour the interim manager would have worked would have been billed at $160 per hour.
Narsh and Galeczka will each receive an additional $500 per week on top of their salaries as police chief and clerk for taking on the additional work.
Narsh will handle the operations and personnel management aspects of the village manager, while Galeczka will handle the village manager’s office and paper work responsibilities.
Lake Orion has received applications from two candidates to fill the village manager’s position fulltime so far, after advertising for the position just last week.
The council had also considered having the Michigan Municipal League (MML) handle the process, collecting resumes and vetting candidates.
The village council would have conducted the interviews and made the final selection if the MML had gotten involved in the process.
Council Member Shauna Brown said the MML “takes six months to place someone and the cost is exorbitant.”
McClary has said he will spend his remaining time here working on ongoing projects and helping the village council and staff with the transition to new leadership.
He said the village has many projects in the works and he will help guide the village about “where we’re at and where we need to go over the next several months” until a fulltime village manager is hired.
By Jim Newell