WILMINGTON — Two city jobs were done away with but immediately replaced with two new positions.
The two newest positions — Public Works Director and Storm Water Administrator — were approved during Thursday’s Wilmington City Council meeting. The two old positions being eliminated were the superintendents of the Wastewater and Water Departments.
“Many municipalities our size oversee both (wastewater and water) departments. That’s essentially what (Public Works Director) will be doing,” said Safety/Service Director Brian Shidaker.
As for the Storm Water Administrator, Shidaker told council this was a position the city has desperately needed for “many, many years.”
“Stormwater is not the same as the sewer department,” he said. “We’ve needed someone to manage that program. This is a start for us so we can get a handle on our stormwater system.”
He told council the city is working on a master plan for the Wastewater Department and has been receiving recommendations on what to do. When those recommendations are implemented this year, along with the two new positions, he believes the city will start to see significant changes.
“I think it’s a well thought-out plan and it’s going to create some great opportunities,” said Councilmember Matt Purkey.
On Friday, the now-former Water Department Superintendent Rick Schaffer was formally given his new title of Public Works Director by Mayor John Stanforth, who said, “Rick has time and again been an invaluable leader in the overhaul of the Water Treatment Plant and I have no doubt he will lead the Wastewater Treatment Plant to the same successes. His knowledge and work ethic will leave him no room to be anything less than successful.”
“There’s a great crew of people at the Wastewater Department,” said Schaffer. “I’m excited to work with them as we put together a plan to modernize the operation. I appreciate the faith that Mayor Stanforth, the administration and City Council has shown in me. I’m very excited about this opportunity.”
Schaffer has been the city’s water superintendent for more than two years, and has more than 20 years’ experience in the water treatment field.
Also during council:
• Daniel Hopkins, accompanied by his wife Nicole, was sworn in as the newest officer of the Wilmington Police Department.
Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574