Janesville22.9°

Milton administrator resigns

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NEIL W. JOHNSON
August 18, 2010
— Milton City Administrator Todd Schmidt on Tuesday announced his resignation.

Schmidt, who has been the city’s administrator for seven years, on Tuesday afternoon accepted an oral offer to become administrator/economic development director for the village of Waunakee.


Schmidt formally announced his resignation at a city council meeting Tuesday night.


Waunakee village board President John Laubmeier said the village had offered a contract to a candidate, but he wouldn’t comment further, pending negotiations with the candidate.


Schmidt said he’d been told late Tuesday that his contract would be finalized by midweek.


Schmidt will remain at work in Milton through Sept. 21.


The village of Waunakee is a community of 12,000 people located about 10 miles north of Madison. Schmidt, who was an assistant administrator in Brown Deer for five years before coming to Milton in March 2003, said the move to Waunakee will allow him professional growth and fit his family’s needs.


The pay range for the position Schmidt was offered is between $105,000 and $125,000. Schmidt’s annual salary in Milton is $78,416, according to city records.


The Waunakee village board had been interviewing candidates for the position since the first week of August, Village Clerk Julee Helt said. Helt said the position has been vacant since October 2009, after former village administrator Bill Barlow resigned.


Two village employees had filled the position in the interim.


Schmidt said the village had been considering him for the position since early June. He had previously told Milton officials he was a finalist for the position.


Four other candidates from communities including Sun Prairie, Lake Mills and Mount Horeb also were considered for the position, officials said.


Schmidt said he’d applied for an earlier village administrator vacancy in Waunakee in 2009, but that he hadn’t gotten the job. He said he found the position attractive because the community is growing despite the lackluster economy statewide.


“They contacted me about the opening and asked if I’d be interested in applying again. I got a second kick at the cat, and my feelings towards the community hadn’t changed,” Schmidt said.


Milton Mayor Tom Chesmore said he’ll miss Schmidt’s friendship and collaboration on city business.


He called Schmidt a talented administrator and said he wasn’t surprised to see him moving on.


“If they’re (the village of Waunakee) looking for economic development and somebody who’ll truly, really listen to and respect city officials, they’ve got the right person,” Chesmore said.


Schmidt’s departure comes as the city is starting work on its 2011 budget and as officials are discussing several tentative city projects including a proposed redevelopment at the city’s eastside business district and proposed projects for public works and police and fire department facilities.


The Milton city council voted unanimously Tuesday night to appoint Milton Police Chief Jerry Schuetz as interim administrator. In addition to his work as police chief, Schuetz will take on the responsibilities of carrying out city council policy, supervising city department heads and overseeing the city’s day-to-day activities, officials said.


The council did not discuss how the city would compensate Schuetz for the additional work.


The council also unanimously approved an offer by Schmidt to recruit the city’s next administrator. Schmidt said he’ll continue the recruiting process after he leaves the city, but that he would charge a maximum fee of $2,500 for the work.


Schmidt said the average recruiting firm would charge the city about $8,000 for the same service. Schmidt said he’d start recruitment immediately.


The council also unanimously approved Herb Stinski as an independent budget consultant during planning for the city’s 2011 budget.



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