Panel to consider city manager charter language amendment

The Negaunee City Council is continuing its search for a new city manager to replace Jeff Thornton, who left the position earlier this year.

NEGAUNEE — The Negaunee City Council will consider charter language relating to city manager qualifications during its regular meeting 7 p.m. Thursday at the Negaunee Senior Center.

Council members will review examples of charter language from other municipalities as it relates to experience necessary for city manager candidates and consider adopting a resolution containing proposed ballot language.

The council may also simply consider a resolution to remove the words “as a city manager” from city charter Section 6.2, according to an agenda supplement.

Once adopted by the council, state law requires the proposed language be submitted to the governor before it can be submitted to voters, according to the agenda supplement.

“All of this would need to be done before the 12th Tuesday before any such election,” the supplement states. “The resolution and proposed ballot language must be on file with the city clerk at least 60 days before the election.”

Any decision on the matter is unlikely to affect the current city manager search, officials say.

The city has been searching for a new manager since April, after the council entered into a separation agreement with former city manager Jeff Thornton effective March 9.

The council conducted final interviews with three candidates for the position in the first week of August. Only one had city manager experience.

Negaunee Police Chief Jay Frusti was appointed interim city manager in August after Department of Public Works Manager Gerald Koski retired. Koski had filled the city manager position from March through July.

The city charter states that the position should be filled within six months of the effective date of a city manager’s resignation or removal.

The council will also consider bids for the installation of a pre-engineered shelter with a concrete slab floor and access sidewalk for Bernie Rivers Field Park.

Stonehouse Window and Door Inc. submitted the sole bid for the project at $19,420, according to an agenda supplement.

The shelter must be in place by Sept. 30 to meet a Michigan Department of Natural Resources Land and Water Conservation Fund grant deadline.

Lisa Bowers can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 242. Her email address is