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County Board to use ‘normal procedures’ to hire animal control director

Published: Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

GENEVA – The County Board is seeking applicants for the job at the top of the county’s animal control department.

Tuesday, the County Board paved the way for the application process to begin because the board changed the official job description for the post.

In 2011, the board had altered the job description to require the next animal control director to be a veterinarian. But this month, the County Board reversed that decision, stipulating that it seeks an administrator to run the department’s business affairs while leaving the care of animals in the department’s custody to other employees and a contracted veterinarian.

The board indicated it intends to pay the animal control director about $60,000 a year.

County Board Chairman Chris Lauzen, meeting with the County Board in closed session Tuesday, also presented the board with a name of a candidate for the post. The board discussed the matter behind closed doors for more than 30 minutes.

After the meeting, Lauzen declined to identify the candidate. But he said he was forwarding to the board a candidate recommended by Barbara Jeffers, interim Kane County Health Department director.

Talking points made available to reporters by a county spokesman before the meeting provided details about the candidate, noting the administrator candidate had “Kane County business experience,” was a nuclear submarine captain with 35 years of “management consulting experience,” and is an “experienced manager in developing best practices for billing and collections.”

After the closed door meeting, Lauzen said the board would not vote on hiring an administrator until the county went “through the normal procedures.”

However, Lauzen said hiring an animal control administrator remains one of his top priorities because the department has about $800,000 in outstanding billings that need to be collected. Without an administrator to oversee collections for items such as animal registration and rabies tags, the department cannot make a $186,000 mortgage payment due this year for the animal control facility in St. Charles Township.

Lauzen acknowledged that in ordinary circumstances, he first would hire a full-time health department director to oversee the hiring of an animal control administrator.

“But there’s all that work just sitting there, and it needs to be done,” Lauzen said. “That is a fire going on right now that we need to put out.”

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