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Alarming Exodus of City Staff

Submitted by on

I am concerned about the number of experienced employees who have left the City in the last year or so. Small organizations can’t afford to lose this much talent.

It began almost two years ago with the firing of City Manager Ken Armstrong, who was admired and loved by many Mill Creek citizens and in my opinion, most City employees.

In the last year 13 or more employees have left the City. Some were asked to leave, others were pushed or fired, and some left in outright disgust.

A majority had worked long and loyal years for the City, serving 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30+ years. Much valuable City knowledge, experience and history has been walking out the door of our beloved City.

From what I can gather, the positions leaving and estimated years of experience are:

• Police Chief - 28 yrs;
• Police Commander - 25 yrs;
• Police Officer - 25 yrs;
• Police Sergeant - 19 yrs;
• Police Support Services Manager - 31 yrs;
• Building Official - 15 yrs;
• Park & Recreation Director - 18 yrs;
• Senior Planner - 10 yrs;
• Finance Director - 7 yrs;
• Finance Director -4 yrs;
• Payroll Technician - 5 yrs;
• City Attorney - 3 years; and
• Facilities Maintenance Crew Member - 3 yrs.

I love Mill Creek and so do most citizens I know. It disturbs me that many of these employees are having to leave at all, much less just before their full retirement age. It doesn’t seem moral.

The new City Manager has a reputation of being very smart, yet mercurial, abusive, and who talks down to employees. The Mayor and Council believe she is doing a great job.

Citizens of Mill Creek need to be very concerned.

David W. Wood
Evergreen

Exodus of City Staff

While not being aware of the reasons all of the above people have department it is well known that the former Police Chief informed the city manager when she came on board that he most likely would be
retiring.

As for the Police Commander we have been through a couple of these of going back several years.

Since the city is not going to be annexing any new land in the near future. The planner was not needed and she moved on to a greener pastures and a more interesting situation as I have have done in a similar situation.

It was my understanding that the building official had some medical problems that needed attending. I also believe it was stated that this individual is also working for the city on a part time basis as our need for a full time official has been reduced due to build out in Mill Creek.

The senior Finance Director was close to retirement and wanted to experience more in life while he was physically an financially able to do so. To this I personally attest is a very good idea having done the same and retired at an age of 1 year younger than the senior Finance Director. Work is highly overrated IMHO.

The other Finance Director got a better paying job where he used to work. It was also my opinion having observed him that he was much more comfortable in a less public arena.

The city attorney cut his commute by half. Again a very good thing to do as it allows more family time.

There are other employees that are getting close to retirement and will be leaving us in the next year or two.

When management changes some always find it not to their liking and look else where. Reportedly, there has been some grumbling by those who are now required to show up for work.

A number of city employees have thrived working with the new city manager and have delivered significant results with their new responsiblities.

The previous city manager was liked by some city employees because he "granted favors" and in doing worked around department heads and therefore was not a good manager. His poor management practices left the city hall in disarray.

The list of employees departing was rather detailed and had not been discussed or listed anywhere I am aware of. One could wonder if this might be the work of the cabal that lost the election in an attempt to lay some ground work for the next election.

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