Commissioner Jerry Dierker said August "Skip" Schaller would be the new assistant utilities superintendent, a post that has remained vacant since the retirement of George Rausch in 2011.
Schaller has worked for the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) since 1992, including the position of area engineer. In that position, Schaller oversaw highway maintenance operations for a five-county area that included eight maintenance facilities and 70 employees. Schaller has a bachelor's of science degreein civil engineering from the University of Missouri-Rolla.
According to City Administrator Dennis Pyle, Schaller will begin his duties with the city on Jan. 14, 2013, and will work under the direction of Utilities Superintendent Pete Rauch. In his new position, Schaller will assist in providing multi-departmental supervision for the electric, water, sewer, and fiber departments and work with state agencies and departments in regulatory matters relating to the water and sewer systems.
"Schaller will be involved in all aspects of management, including human resources, asset management, scheduling and short-term and long-term capital planning," Pyle said.
The city council began searching for a new assistant utilities superintendent in August. Four finalists were interviewed in November.
"The recruitment of an assistant utilities superintendent is part of the succession plan put in place to hire and train the candidate who will succeed Pete Rauch upon his retirement in late 2013," Pyle said.
Rauch began his duties with the city as assistant utilities superintendent in 1988. He stepped into the top position when Lessley Shelton retired.
Department heads reported city crews have conducted a variety of activities in the past month.
Sanitation Superintendent Russ Balmas said his crews hauled 51 dump truck loads of loose leaves in the annual fall collection for use in the compost yard. Another 350 dump truck loads of debris were hauled from the collection point south of the Justice Center to the old city dump for burning.
Street department crews completed installation of the new playground at County Road and Oak Street and erected a fence around the site. Crews were working on improvements on the maintenance barn at the IOOF Cemetery.
Wade Ennes, building inspector, said the contractor for building a new city park casino planned to be in town this week to begin work.
In pending projects, Ennes said International Dehydrated Foods is planning a 5,500-square-foot office expansion in 2013. Rex Land, with A-1 Rental, has purchased the drive-through space from the UMB Bank Branch at Dairy and Kyler streets. He plans to build a new facility for Curves, the local franchise owned by his daughter, Mia Land.
Water department foreman Steve Roden said utility crews have continued changing water meters or radio-read versions. Around 500 old meters in the city remain to be changed.
Roden said during the past month crews repaired major water leaks at Krueger Storage and at the Monett Regional Airport. Four sewer backups, all credited to grease, were fixed. All of the city wells were prepared for winter service.
Police Chief Tim Schweder said Michael Hartig was hired on Nov. 26 as an officer, bringing the department back to full staff.
Schweder said property crime totals will be up for 2012. A series of thefts and burglaries have taken place in recent weeks between Cleveland Avenue and Broadway on the north and south, and from Sixth to Tenth streets. In many cases, stolen cars had keys left inside.
Dispatching supervisor Bonnie Witt-Schulte said the Monett Police Department is now dispatching for the City of Verona.
As emergency management director, Witt-Schulte said she has also been meeting with Monett R-1 School District leaders, reviewing emergency drills.
The most recent changes in employment with the city have included assistant building inspector Jeff Brattin leaving in September to take another job.
Heather Winchell went from part-time to full-time dispatching with the police department in October. The last police officers hired, in addition to Hartig, were John Ferguson in May and Scott Gaston in July.
Jason Sperandio joined the water department in July. Gene Roetto retired from the water department in May.