“We’re treating someone as a yo-yo who participated in good faith,” said Mono County Supervisor Fred Stump at Tuesday’s regular meeting of the Board.
He was referring to recent internal recruitment efforts to promote current Mono County GIS Coordinator and Digital 395 Project Manager Nate Greenberg to County IT Director. Former IT Director Clay Neely retired at the end of June.
Originally the Board didn’t want external recruitment for the position, so it went through the whole process with Greenberg. Then, at the eleventh hour, Board members remembered that they had wanted to go through an open or external recruitment process for management positions. So they put on the brakes at the final moment when Greenberg’s contract was before them on Tuesday for final approval.
The situation, Stump said, “makes us look whimsical and capricious. We need to set ourselves up for this mistake. A lot of people already feel we’re incompetent nits.”
Stump suggested moving forward with the Greenberg contract and then setting a policy for recruitment going forward.
Supervisor Johnston suggested pulling the item, which was under the consent portion of the agenda, until Board Chair Byng Hunt, who was absent on Tuesday, returned so that the full Board could discuss it.
But Supervisor Tim Fesko was ready and willing to dive into the discussion on Tuesday. Johnston told him to make a motion to discuss, which he did. However, no one seconded so the motion died.
Mono County CAO Jim Leddy pointed out that he didn’t want employees to get caught up in a split vote or doubt from the Board.
“We need the Board to be together when building a team,” Leddy said. “We need to remove individuals and talk as an organization.”
Along the same lines, Supervisor Tim Alpers said he needed more information on the process, not the candidate, before he would be ready to vote.
Fesko agreed, stating that the discussion had to do with policy, not the individual (Greenberg) in the agenda item.
Peter Kobylarz, who currently works in the GIS department as GIS Specialist under Greenberg, spoke in support of the contract’s approval.
“I want to express support of Nate in the position,” Kobylarz said. “He’s already stepped into the role since Clay retired. Nate has a good understanding of IT and GIS and can hit the ground running. You have a great choice in front of you.”
Supervisor Johnston thanked Kobylarz but said that public testimony would be held until the item came before the Board again at a future meeting where all Board members were present.
The Board agreed to postpone the agenda item to a future meeting. As of press time Leddy said he did not know when the item would appear again.
Later on Tuesday, Supervisor Alpers told The Sheet that he took the blame for the mix up and had told Greenberg after the meeting not to lose faith in the process and the County.
According to the agenda, the contract for the IT Director, if it had been approved, costs a total of $154,440 for 11 months of 2013-2014, and is fully budgeted.
A second contract on the consent agenda to hire William Van Lente as the County’s new Human Resources Director/Risk Manager was approved 4-0 by the Board. Leddy confirmed to The Sheet on Thursday that Van Lente’s recruitment had been external.