Stookey Continues as City Administrator
City treasurer to continue pulling double duty as acting city administrator.
City Treasurer and Acting City Administrator Elaine Stookey will continue in both jobs until whenever the city council hires a new permanent city administrator.
Last night, by a vote of eight to two, the Hyattsville City Council approved a measure extending Stookey's contract to serve as acting city administrator indefinitely. Councilor Candace Hollingsworth (Ward 2) and Councilor Tim Hunt (Ward 3) voted against the contract extension.
Stookey had already been working as acting city administrator under a one month contract approved in April following Police Chief Doug Holland's decision to relinquish the acting city administrator role he had held since the position was vacated last October.
Hollingsworth said that her disapproval had nothing to do with her confidence in Stookey's ability to pull double duty.
"I am just opposed to two top positions being occupied by the same person," said Hollingsworth. "Looking at the length of 'temporary', right now, goes to October. I would much rather take this opportunity to have a temporary executive spot."
Councilor Paula Perry (Ward 4) dismissed calls for a temporary administrative executive.
"We have had temporary city administrators and it has caused chaos among the staff," said Perry. "I would not feel comfortable this time, because there were too many problems and there was a lot for the new city administrator to clean up when they came in."
Hunt proposed an amendment which would have only stretched out Stookey's term as acting city administrator into August, when it would be up for renewal, but the amendment was defeated.
Hunt, along with Hollingsworth and Councilor Ruth Ann Frazier all expressed concerns that an indefinite extension of Stookey's contract could inadvertently slow down the city's search for a permanent city administrator.
Mayor Marc Tartaro, however, promised that the city Human Resources Director Chris Vermillion would be ready to advertise for the position within the next few weeks. Tartaro said that Vermillion would be ready to present the city council with a revised job description for the position next week. Once approved, the job could be advertised publicly.