GENEVA – Despite a hiring freeze in place and continued concerns over Kane County’s finances, Kane County Board Chairman Chris Lauzen is seeking to hire someone to help the county government “make connections” with its residents and others.
Either later this month or early next, Lauzen said he intends to hire someone to fill a position he has called a “community outreach coordinator.”
According to a job listing posted on the county website, the position would be full time, paying a wage of up to $25 a hour. But the position would only be temporary, as the coordinator would be granted only a six-month contract, according to the listing.
Lauzen said the position would be important to the county, as the person hired for the job would oversee the coordination of various county programs intended to build "connections" in Kane County.
The coordinator also would direct efforts to foster “connections” with those outside the county, including those who could bring economic opportunities to Kane County.
“I see this as potentially being a catalyst,” Lauzen said. “There are so many opportunities we have to be connected with each other, with the region and with the world.”
Lauzen said the coordinator would report to the Kane County Board, and the direction of the “connection” efforts would be set by the County Board.
He said the position would be too time-consuming to delegate to current county staff who he said "have their hands full with their current duties."
The county also would hire a “community outreach assistant” to work under the supervision of the coordinator. That hire would be paid $12 per hour, and also would be temporary, with a six-month contract.
Lauzen said the temporary contracts would allow the county to “dip our toe in the water," before committing to a permanent hire.
The temporary nature of the hires also would allow Lauzen to hire the workers without first receiving the formal approval of the Kane County Board. Currently, the county government operates under a hiring freeze, which requires the creation of permanent positions to be reviewed by the County Board.
County Board members contacted by The Kane County Chronicle on Monday said they were unaware of the jobs listings, and declined to discuss them until they learned more.
Lauzen said he has received resumes from interested applicants, and intended to select a coordinator "in the next month."
He said the position could be made permanent by the County Board at the end of the six-month contract.