A plan to add a chief administrative officer to the Salt Lake County government structure fell flat on its face earlier this year, but a scaled-down plan to add a staff manager to the commission's administrative structure is expected to be approved Monday.
Plans for the staff manager/financial officer position have been in the development stages for several months. An ordinance creating the new position has been approved by both the county Executive Council and County Cabinet and is expected to sail through the commission's approval process during its regular meeting Monday morning.Kerry Steadman, associate director of the county's Administrative Services department, has been picked for the job and is scheduled to begin functioning in his new post July 17.
The job was developed with Steadman in mind, but it was not built around him personally, said Commission Chairman Michael Stewart. "This job has evolved. We are carving out our institutions to fit reality," Stewart said.
Stewart was also referring to the differences between the manager's job and the proposal for a CAO, which was abandoned after the commissioners "looked over our shoulder and saw even the staff wasn't supporting it."
The CAO post would have carried a salary of about $90,000. Steadman will get a 5 percent raise to $63,000. And while he will take over some administrative functions delegated to him by the commission, his duties will be much more restricted than a CAO's would have been.
"He will be doing some things that we're now doing," Stewart said. "He'll also deal with some of the trivia" so the commission members have more time for long-range planning. The manager will assume responsibility for lobbying efforts with the Legislature and will be charged with improving productivity throughout the county government system. "The administrative and executive functions will still be under the commission," Stewart said.
Steadman will also take on the responsibilities as a financial officer, which the ordinance creating the new post says can either be combined into the manager's job or can be a separate position.