(ANOKA) – In a spirit of compromise and after a week of confusing and a seemingly bizarre series of stalemates, six out of seven Anoka County Commissioners decided to move forward in principle with a plan to post the soon-to-be-vacant county administrator’s job.
County Administrator Jerry Soma is retiring at the beginning of May. At its commission meeting on March 26, back-to-back deadlocked votes meant resolutions to appoint Commission Chair Rhonda Sivarajah as the next administrator and then to open the posting up to the general public both failed. That left commissioners and community members at a loss as to what would happen next.
Commission Matt Look called for a special meeting, for which Sivarajah recused herself. At the work session on April 2, the discussion centered around the factions within the panel of those who did not want to make the posting open to everyone versus those who thought it most important to keep it within the county.
Commissioner Mandy Meisner, the newest member, pushed hardest for a more general applicant pool, but she eventually acquiesced to the notion that applicants from only within the county government or county elected officials would be broad enough to bring in the most qualified candidates.
At the end of the less than 90-minute meeting, commissioners agreed on looking for a resolution at the April 9 commission meeting that would allow the administrator’s job to be posted for county employees and county elected officials to apply within 10 days.