Alabaster creates city administrator position

Published 11:05 am Tuesday, October 9, 2018

By NEAL WAGNER / Managing Editor

ALABASTER – Alabaster will return to having a city administrator rather than a city manager for the first time in several years, as the City Council voted recently to create the position after it was funded in the city’s 2019 fiscal year budget.

Council members voted unanimously during their Oct. 1 meeting to create a city manager/planner position and approve the position’s job description. The vote came after a public hearing, during which nobody spoke for or against the matter.

The move means Alabaster will have a city administrator for the first time since 2013, when then-city administrator George Henry was named the city manager. Current Alabaster City Manager Brian Binzer likely will be appointed to the new city administrator/planner position, and the city manager position will be left vacant.

According to the job description, the administrator/planner position will oversee the finance director, IT director, library director, city clerk, court clerk/chief magistrate and planning and zoning coordinator, and will report to the mayor.

The city administrator/planner will be appointed every four years by the City Council, and the position’s terms will be the same as the council’s. During the four-year term, the person in the position can only be removed by a two-thirds vote of the City Council.

“The purpose of this position is to direct and oversee operations of assigned departments and to assist the mayor in coordinating the day-to-day administrative operations of the city,” the job description read. “This position serves as the city planner and economic development officer.”

The city administrator/planner position will require a bachelor’s degree in public administration, business administration, urban planning or a related field, with a master’s degree preferred. Also required are five or more years of progressively responsible local government experience.

As city manager, Binzer currently performs many duties included in the new city administrator/planner position, but some of his current duties will be handled by the city’s new executive director of engineering and infrastructure position, which also was included in Alabaster’s 2019 fiscal year budget. The city currently is accepting applications for the executive director of engineering and infrastructure position.

“This will streamline the management process throughout our city,” said Ward 5 Councilman Russell Bedsole.