WARNER ROBINS -- Warner Robins City Council made a second attempt Tuesday at deciding how to split responsibilities of a now-retired department director who had accumulated several positions’ duties over the years.
City Council decided at its regular meeting not to vote on an ordinance that would have created a procurement position. The council did a first reading instead, and will read it a second time and vote at their next meeting.
The city’s purchasing department director, Mark Baker, took the early retirement option offered this year. He’d worked for the city 28 years. His salary was $71,155.
Over the years, Baker’s position extended past managing the purchases for the city’s departments. He was also managing in-house projects and monitoring projects from the special purposes local option sales taxes.
City Council agrees Baker’s duties cannot pass to his successor because she doesn’t earn his tenured salary.
Mayor Chuck Shaheen and Councilman Daron Lee proposed Tuesday the city add a procurement manager to monitor projects, including unfinished 2001 and 2006 SPLOST projects.
“The reason why they’re not done is because we don’t have anyone monitoring them,” Lee said, adding his district has the most unfinished projects. Councilman Mike Brashear agreed with the idea.
However, council members Mike Davis, Mike Daley and Carolyn Robbins opposed it during the precouncil meeting. As it stands now, Councilman Paul Shealy would be the deciding vote. He didn’t weigh in at the meetings.
The opposing council members said they think the best solution right now is to require better communication between department heads, who need to be responsible in monitoring the SPLOST projects under their purview.
“Until we get all the communication problems worked out, I’m not going to approve a new position,” Davis said at the regular meeting.
Also at Tuesday’s meeting, City Council unanimously approved 15 promotions in the Fire Department.
Chief Robert Singletary said the promotions were to fill positions left vacant when 11 employees retired this year.
To contact writer Christina M. Wright, call 256-9685.