Oskaloosa.com

Community News Network

January 16, 2013

Councilman among transit director applicants

OTTUMWA — A selection committee will begin poring over applications for the Ottumwa Transit director’s position tonight, and one city councilman has thrown his hat in the ring.

City Attorney Joni Keith said she has received around 30 applications and they’ve come from the west coast, east coast, Ohio, Illinois, Arkansas and more.

“Some have some transit background, some have very little, but they might have more management experience,” she said.

Tonight, the selection committee will choose those they want to move forward to the interview process.

Councilman Jeremy Weller — who is also the current jail administrator — said he needs a change of scenery.

“10-15 Transit and Ottumwa Transit ... [I want to] get the services they provide back up to the expectations of what citizens want and need,” he said. “I would enjoy that challenge of doing that and utilizing my management skills I’ve learned over the years.

“It was a decision I made, not only me, but my family, my wife. We talked about the opportunity and we both thought it would be better for me, a good fit.”

Weller said his seven years supervising the jail qualify him for the management position.

As a councilman, Weller has analyzed Transit’s budget as well as the far larger city budget.

“I think there’s a need for someone who has some budget experience and I certainly have a knowledge of their budget and have worked on budgets as a city councilman,” he said.

And as far as reporting to the state and federal governments, Weller said he’s had that experience already at the jail.

“Really, what I would have to do on the transit side of it is not that much different,” Weller said. “If I was selected, I’m not going into this blind.”

Ottumwa Transit has seen two interim directors, Mark Hagist and currently Dave Silverio, and one director, Diane Gawronski, since former director Pam Ward was fired nearly two years ago.

“I think the situation after Pam left ... maybe the stress and intense scrutiny the department was under wore its course on some people,” Weller said. “I think we’re in a better position, obviously, than we were just a year ago financially.”

As a councilman, Weller said he would have to step down if he were hired.

“That’s why this was a hard decision because I do enjoy being on the council,” he said. “My intention was never to leave early.”

If he were to get the position, Weller said he wouldn’t be surprised if some in the public say it was rigged since he is part of city government.

“But to minimize that, I’ve only had one discussion with [Keith] and that was when I turned in my resume, I asked a couple of questions about the position and the hiring process,” Weller said.

Keith said she wants the interviews to take place next week and the following week so they can have a decision by the first week of February. She hopes the chosen director would then start by mid-February or the beginning of March.

“I want someone who has management skills, who has budgetary skills and I would like to have someone that has some transit experience and background, but it’s not the only criteria,” she said. “I want someone who is able to be a liaison with the city council and the public and who is able to work with the 10-15 board of directors and the [Ottumwa Transit Advisory board].”

1
Text Only
Community News Network
  • Affirmative action ruling challenges colleges seeking diversity

    The U.S. Supreme Court's support of Michigan's ban on race-based affirmative action in university admissions may spur colleges to find new ways to achieve diversity without using racial preferences.

    April 23, 2014

  • A 'wearable robot' helps her walk again

    Science is about facts, numbers, laws and formulas. To be really good at it, you need to spend a lot of time in school. But science is also about something more: dreaming big and helping people.

    April 23, 2014

  • Cuba is running out of condoms

    The newest item on Cuba's list of dwindling commodities is condoms, which are now reportedly in short supply. In response, the Cuban government has approved the sale of expired condoms.

    April 23, 2014

  • The waffle taco's biggest enemy isn't McDonald's. It's consumer habits.

    Gesturing to Taco Bell, Thompson said McDonald's had "not seen an impact relative to the most recent competitor that entered the [breakfast] space," and that new competition would only make McDonald's pursue breakfast more aggressively.

    April 23, 2014

  • Screen Shot 2014-04-22 at 4.42.47 PM.png VIDEO: Leopard attacks crowd in India

    A leopard caused panic in the city of Chandrapur when it sprung from the roof of a house and charged at rescue workers.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • The top 12 government programs ever

    Which federal programs and policies succeed in being cost-effective and targeting those who need them most? These two tests are obvious: After all, why would we spend taxpayers' money on a program that isn't worth what it costs or helps those who do not need help?

    April 22, 2014

  • In cuffs... 'Warlock' in West Virginia accused of sexual assault

    Police in West Virginia say a man claiming to be a “warlock” used promises of magical spells to lure children into committing sexual acts with him.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Cats outsmart the researchers

    I knew a lot had been written about dogs, and I assumed there must be at least a handful of studies on cats. But after weeks of scouring the scientific world for someone - anyone - who studied how cats think, all I was left with was this statement, laughed over the phone to me by one of the world's top animal cognition experts, a Hungarian scientist named Ádám Miklósi.

    April 22, 2014

  • McCain 1 House Republicans are more active on Twitter than Democrats

    Your representative in the House is almost certainly on Twitter. Your senator definitely is. But how are they using the social network? Are Democrats more active than Republicans, or vice versa? Who has the most followers on the Hill?

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Do your genes make you procrastinate?

    Procrastinators, in my experience, like nothing better than explaining away their procrastination: General busyness, fear of failure, and simple laziness are just a handful of the excuses and theories often tossed around. Now researchers from the University of Colorado Boulder have added another option to the list: genetics.

    April 21, 2014

Obituaries
Oskaloosa Shopper
Facebook
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Photo reprints