Twiggs County is still searching for its next county administrator two years after the job became vacant.
The position was first advertised in the spring of 2013 after former County Administrator Terry Bates was fired. A second advertisement was posted online last month.
“We kind of fell by the wayside, and we didn’t hire one,” said Twiggs County Commission Chairman Kenneth Fowler. “This is the second time we’ve advertised (the position) since I’ve been in office. We put it online, but we never did do any interviewing. ... Then we decided we needed (a county administrator).”
The county clerk, personnel office and human resources office have been sharing the county administrator responsibilities, Fowler said.
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The administrator also serves as the county’s chief administrative officer and head of the county’s administrative branch, according to the job description. The administrator also is responsible for planning, organizing and directing the local government’s day-to-day operations.
In May, Twiggs County asked the Middle Georgia Regional Commission for help recruiting and screening candidates.
Ralph Nix, executive director of the regional commission, said it isn’t necessarily unusual for the hiring process to take more than two years.
“It may, in fact, be that they aren’t planning to hurry in the process,” Nix said. “It might mean that they have some other considerations or priorities. There are any number of reasons that (the hiring process) could go on that long. ... More likely, it’s a combination of those things.”
Fowler said county commissioners have interviewed five or six people so far and picked two promising candidates. One of the candidates “turned us down, and then we had another one we made an offer to, and he came up to town to ask questions,” he said.
Though commissioners made that candidate an offer, they voted Aug. 6 not to make the hire. Fowler and Commissioner Donald Floyd voted in favor of hiring while commissioners Tommie Lee Bryant, William Bond and Donald Watson voted no.
“We need an administrator, but I don’t have the votes to pull it,” Fowler said. “I think it’s been too long without one. We need one to get everything back in order, finances anyway. ... (We want to hire) somebody who’s qualified and has bookkeeping knowledge. We’d prefer somebody with some experience and someone the board can work with.”
Qualified candidates must have a bachelor’s degree in public administration or a related field, but a master’s degree is preferred. Additionally, candidates must have at least five years of experience as a county/city manager or administrator, or have the experience in a closely related area.
To contact writer Laura Corley, call 744-4334 or follow her on Twitter @Lauraecor.