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Oak Harbor hires firm to hire city attorney

By JESSIE STENSLAND
Whidbey News-Times Co-editor
November 25, 2012 · Updated 1:08 PM
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It may cost the city of Oak Harbor as much as $25,000 to find a new city attorney.

During a meeting last Wednesday, the city council approved a motion authorizing the mayor to sign a professional service agreement with a headhunting firm, Seattle-area Prothman Company, to recruit a city attorney.

The contract is for $18,500 plus expenses, which city officials estimate will be a total cost in the range of $22,000 to $25,000.

The city’s human resource department advertised for the open position in August and September, but no qualified applicants came forward. In response, Mayor Scott Dudley suggested the city hire a professional recruiting firm; the council unanimously agreed.

City government has been in a state of upheaval since Mayor Scott Dudley came into office in January and fired a series of department heads.

He fired City Attorney Margery Hite and replaced her with Assistant City Attorney Bill Hawkins. He fired Hawkins a few months later.

Prothman guaranteed that if the successful candidate is terminated for cause or resigns within a year of employment date, the company will conduct a replacement search for no additional fee.

 

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