Search for new county road manager begins

Published 8:01 am Monday, February 10, 2014

Though the two organizations will continue to operate in tandem, members of the Cass County road commission announced Thursday that they are seeking a new manager to head operations after 18 months of shared leadership with the St. Joseph County Road Commission.

For over a year, Christopher Bolt has managed both St. Joseph and Cass County commissions. However, the strain brought about by this winter’s string of severe snowstorms has made both organizations reconsider this arrangement.

“The time has come, with the lack of funding and multitude of scenarios that need to be taken care of in our county, really requires someone here more than the 20 hours a week,” said LeRoy Krempec, the chairman of the road commission. “Things are just too much for one individual to cover.”

The decision to dissolve the shared manager position was made during a meeting between the two commissions on Jan. 29. Both boards fully supported the decision, Krempec said.

Even with the loss of a common manager, the organizations plan to continue operations in the same collaborative manner as they had since they first agreed to the partnership in 2010, Krempec said.

“It’s not a requiem, it’s not a death,” he said. “It’s just that each county will have its own manager.”

Advertisements for the opening will be distributed throughout the coming week, and the commission hopes to have the position filled by the end of February, the chairman said. Bolt will continue to manage Cass County in the interim.

“I think we took three steps forward and only one step back, and I don’t think that’s bad,” Krempec said. “I look forward to making many more steps forward in the future.”

When asked by the one of the commissioners about the status of the commission’s stock of road salts, Krempec said that county’s storage barn is three-quarters full.

“Our salt is fine. We still have 700 tons still available,” he said.

The commission expects to have enough stock available to last the rest of the winter, should they maintain their current expenditure rate of 100 tons a week, Krempec said.