Washington Evening Journal
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Washington, IA 52353
Fairfield council seeks to fill city administrator role
FAIRFIELD — The Fairfield City Council met virtually with the consulting firm Hinson Consulting during its meeting Monday night.
The city will soon be in need of a new city administrator after current city administrator, Aaron Kooiker, announced he would be stepping down to take the city manager job in Carroll. Kooiker’s last day in Fairfield will be Friday, March 3. To assist the council in its search, the councilors have hired Hinson Consulting of Washington.
On Monday, the company’s principal consultant Brent Hinson met with the council via video call to discuss the next steps in the process, which will involve meeting with the council and city staff on Friday. Hinson was previously city administrator in Washington for about a decade until he stepped down in 2021.
Council member Doug Flournoy said the personnel committee will be the point of contact with Hinson Consulting as they progress through the process. Judy Ham is chair of the personnel committee.
In other news, council member Elizabeth Estey relayed some concerns she’s received from residents in her Fourth Ward about the band music in Central Park on Sunday mornings. On the council’s consent agenda was approving park use permits for various organizations to use the park, with a noise exemption. For instance, Fairfield First Friday’s Art Walk uses the park on the first Friday of the month from June through October, and again in December.
Estey said the concerns she heard were about the Fairfield First Baptist Church’s worship services, which meets in the park one Sunday per month during the summer. This year, the church has asked to use the park on May 14, June 11, July 9, Aug. 13 and Sept. 10. Estey asked if the permit could be amended or if the church could be asked to begin their music later in the morning.
Kooiker, who is a member of the church, said the band begins warming up around 9 a.m.
Estey said that 9 a.m. can be a little early for some people on a Sunday morning. She suggested asking the band to start warming up an hour later at 10 a.m. Council member Tom Twohill asked how many complaints Estey had received, and she said she had received two complaints.
Kooiker said he will talk to the pastor of the church so that the band will do a sound check but to then warm up without using their amplifiers so they don’t bother the downtown residents that early. Estey said she liked that idea.
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