Soldotna restructures city hall

Soldotna’s city clerk will now report to the city council, instead of the city manager.

 

At last week’s Soldotna City Council meeting, the council passed an ordinance that places “full responsibility” for the city clerk’s appointment and oversight to the city council. The ordinance, which passed unanimously, will not impact day to day operations of the city, according to a memo from council members Linday Murphy and Paul Whitney.

“A system with the clerk reporting to the governing body is common within the state. And in Alaska, Soldotna qualifies as a larger community,” Murphy said at the council meeting. “And it is common throughout the U.S. except in those areas where the clerk is an elected official.”

Murphy said that the city manager and the clerk have very different roles in the administration of local government. The city manager is tasked with carrying out the council’s policy through the adoption of the annual budget, while the city clerk works to assure that the process conforms to all local, state, and federal laws and regulations.

“The clerk is concerned with process. Making sure all processes are followed and many of the, in fact most of the duties are performed by the clerk are related to the administration, but are not necessarily administrative duties,” Murphy said.

In some cases, the two roles can be at odds, according to Murphy.

The ordinance also created a deputy city clerk position. A job description and pay range will be announced at a later date.

Reach Kat Sorensen at kat.sorensen@peninsulaclarion.com.

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