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Covington names interim city manager

The Covington City Council selected an interim city manager from within to at least temporarily replace Derek Matheson.

The council picked Finance Director Rob Hendrickson to fill the void at the July 22 meeting, with his first official day in the role being July 26. Since Hendrickson had a previously scheduled two-week vacation that started Monday, Parks Director Scott Thomas is the acting city manager, as part of a rotating schedule of department heads who fill in during vacations.

Matheson, who accepted a role as the city of Kent’s Chief Administrative Officer after seven years at his post in Covington, had his last day in the office on July 25. He is technically on vacation for two weeks and is expected to take over in Kent on Aug. 11. Hendrickson will receive a pay bump to the level two city manager pay scale while in the position.

City Councilman Joseph Cimaomo, Jr. said Hendrickson’s previous experience as city manager for the city of Newcastle, as well as his knowledge of Covington’s finances, helped aid the decision.

“We know he can do the job; he has done it before,” Cimaomo said. “We believe he will do well for us. He knows the city and what is going on.”

The council is waiting on bids from three outside agencies, which were suggested by Matheson, to help look for a permanent city manager. The selected firm will search internally and externally for candidates. The council expects to discuss the bids at its Aug. 12 meeting.

Cimaomo did not know if Hendrickson wants to be considered for the job full-time. He said the council hopes to select a permanent replacement by November.

“I personally think it might take us a little longer than that,” he said. “It all depends on the amount of applicants we have.”

Cimaomo said it is “possible” that Senior Accountant Casey Parker will act on Hendrickson’s capacity as Finance Director in his stead.

“I know we put the city in good hands with Rob at the helm while we search for a new city manager,” Cimaomo said.

 

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