Council names acting town manager

Strasburg leaders picked a veteran town worker to take the government helm for now.

Town Council adopted a resolution at a work session to appoint George R. “Jay” McKinley as acting town manager. McKinley, an employee of Strasburg for 20 years, will replace Town Manager Judson Rex, whose resignation takes effect Jan. 2.

“Really my whole goal here was to help the town transition into a new town manager,” McKinley said outside the meeting. “We just felt like that we could support ourselves internally until we get somebody new in.”

McKinley will continue to oversee the Department of Public Works while assuming the town manager’s responsibilities. McKinley noted that staff would be working together during the transition.

“I have no aspirations of being a town manager,” McKinley added. “I’m happy in my current position.”

The resolution states that McKinley’s appointment commences Jan. 3 and lasts for up to six months, but terminates once council appoints a permanent town manager. The acting town manager has the same authority and responsibilities as the town manager.

In response to a question from Councilman Scott Terndrup, Mayor Timothy Taylor said council can extend the term of the appointment if they have not found a permanent replacement. Taylor said he had asked Town Attorney Nathan Miller the same question and “what it does is it kind of keeps us focused on what we’re trying to get to.”

“Now that doesn’t mean we’re going to cut corners to make sure we meet our goal, but it keeps us focused and [McKinley] agrees with having that figure in there as well to make sure we stay focused,” Taylor said.

Councilman Rich Orndorff Jr. noted that the term “sets a timeline” for council.

At the end of the work session, council met in closed session to continue their discussion of finding a permanent town manager.

During his appointment, McKinley will receive a salary of $86,736.56, according to the resolution, increasing his base pay of $78,000.

Rex advised council in a closed session Dec. 1 that he had accepted the job of assistant city manager of Denison, Texas. Rex begins work at that position Jan. 20. Rex worked as Strasburg’s town planner from February 2009 until July 2010 when council appointed him as acting town manager to replace Kevin Fauber. Council appointed Rex as permanent town manager in January 2010.

Contact staff writer Alex Bridges at 540-465-5137 ext. 125, or abridges@nvdaily.com