PA to start city manager interviews Wednesday
By Kaitlin Bain
Published 6:43 pm CST, Tuesday, November 12, 2019
Photo: Ryan Welch, Beaumont Enterprise / The Enterprise
Newly-sworn Port Arthur Mayor Thurman "Bill" Bartie interacts with council members and people in the crowd at Port Arthur City Hall Wednesday morning. Photo taken on 07/03/19. Ryan Welch/The Enterprise
Port Arthur’s interim city manager, a veteran of local government. A former small North Carolina town manager who’s been out of college for 12 years but has experience negotiating in-lieu-of tax agreements. A current city administrator with job experience in Peoria, Illinois; Wichita, Kansas; and Austin. All three are vying to usher Port Arthur into its next era.
The Port Arthur City Council on Wednesday is expected to interview the three candidates: Ron Burton, Terence Arrington and Scott Moore, respectively. Councilman Harold Doucet Sr. said he expects the City Council will begin deliberations about its final candidates after the interviews are complete.
A fourth candidate, DeCarlon Seewood, withdrew as a finalist after being announced last week, according to city staff.
The City Council was not forthcoming with additional details about the candidates after announcing the names Nov. 4, but city staff on Nov. 7 responded to a Beaumont Enterprise records request with copies of each of the candidates resumes.
Related: PA council says it has 4 finalists for city manager
Here’s what the resumes reveal about each candidate:
Burton has some two decades of experience in the public sector — the plurality of which has been spent with the city of Port Arthur as an interim city manager, acting city manager, assistant city manager over operations, director of development services and assistant director of planning and community development. He also worked in the cities of Moultrie, Georgia, and Hattiesburg, Mississippi.
During his tenures he helped lead the Hurricane Ike Disaster Recovery Program, which totaled more than $60.3 million, identifying and allocating city-owned properties to recipients of homes and reviewing and approving plans for the new construction of more than 500 single-family dwellings.
He also established Port Arthur’s first GIS Division, in Georgia partnered with local and state organizations and the University of Georgia to address community needs, and in Mississippi initiated work on the “neighborhood action network center model in blighted African-American neighborhoods.”
Arrington’s most recent tenure in city government ended after an eight-month tenure as town manager in 3,267-person Spencer, North Carolina. He did not explain the short tenure on his resume.
Related: PA close to announcing city manager finalists
He also served as an operations analyst for Branch Banking and Trust in Greenville, South Carolina; county administrator for Darlington County, South Carolina; deputy city administrator in Salisbury, Maryland; ICMA Local Government Management Fellow for Fort Lauderdale, Florida; and Business Office Administrator over fleet and general services for the city of Charlotte, North Carolina.
In those positions, he completed a $668,000 project to acquire a 20,000 square feet site for future development as a part of the city’s five-year capital improvement plan, reduced operating expenditures by 50 percent, privatized several city functions at a savings and launched funding for a $10 million solar energy site redevelopment project by preparing an in-lieu-of taxes agreement.
Moore has been the city administrator of Ellsworth, Kansas, population 3,054, since September 2015. He held the same position from June 1997 to August 2005. He also has served as a city administrator or manager in Poteet, Texas; Peoria, Illinois; and Glenn Heights, Texas, as well as interim and assistant city manager for Wichita, Kansas, and a budget or financial analyst for the Austin Financial and Administrative Services Department and city Electric Utility Department, among other positions.
His resume lists a number of grants obtained for various projects in the cities he’s served, including roadway improvements and the installation of storm detention basins; working with a local organization to host a 100,000-spectator annual community event; and worked on various projects to bring developers to town and enhance the city’s tax base.
The three interviewees were culled from an initial pool of 46 applications.
The city has been without a city manager for two years. The city manager is responsible for 650 employees and an annual budget of $141 million, acts as the chief executive officer for the city and carries out City Council priorities.
Interviews are expected to start at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday.