The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

May 5, 2014

City to discuss manager search

By Dale Denwalt, Staff Writer
Enid News & Eagle

ENID, Okla. — City commissioners will start discussions tonight on how to set the criteria and strategy for selecting a new city manager.

Current City Manager Eric Benson has said he will retire by the end of this year.

Typically, municipalities will conduct a formal search or hire a consulting firm to find applicants. Officials have said they want to get through budget negotiations before delving into the hiring process.

The preliminary discussion will occur during the informal public study session at 5 p.m. at the city administration building, 401 W. Garriott.

When they convene into regular session at 6:30 p.m., they will consider installing signs that prohibit parking along the south side of Ponca between Johnson and Kesterfield.

Residents in the area complained to commissioners the road becomes too narrow with vehicles parked on both sides. According to the agenda for tonight’s meeting, nearly half of the property owners along Ponca responded to a survey on the topic.


The commission will vote on awarding a contract to build 1.1 miles of concrete trail between Oakwood and Garland. The 10-foot-wide trail would extend the current pedestrian trail to the west. The extension could include an arch-shaped bridge over a drainage area.

MTZ Construction, of Oklahoma City, submitted the lowest bid, which was lower than the city engineer’s own estimate. The contract is worth up to $652,468.30.

Another segment of the trail heading south from Rupe to Meadowlake Park likely will be contracted to S.L. Madison Construction of Crescent.

The southern spur adds .42 miles to the trail. The construction company will be paid $209,065.

Other business

Commissioners will vote on whether to allow Emerging Fuels Technology to enter into a purchase option agreement on the land at Cimarron Industrial Airpark, an unused industrial zone near the city’s airport. EFT is considering building a gas-to-fuel conversion facility.

Enid City Commission also will vote or discuss the following items:

• Water strategy.

• The ONG natural gas franchise.

• Appointments to the Special Sales Tax Oversight Committee.

• A hearing on amending the sign ordinance.

• Allowing a truck stop on East Garriott to not install a sidewalk.

• Increasing the maximum fine limit and penalties for a multitude of city ordinances, including traffic offenses.

• Amending the capital improvement fund budget by $339,500 to help pay for architectural work on a downtown parking garage. The funds will come from the Enid Municipal Authority Fund and the 1-percent sales tax account.