Council to appoint a new manager near the year's end
By Meagan McGone
MELBOURNE - After providing a decade of service to the residents of Melbourne, city manager Jack Schluckebier is ready to pass on the torch. He plans to retire in January.
"I've been doing this a long time," Mr. Schluckebier said. "I think it's a good time, in my experience, and in my life, for me to do something different."
Mr. Schluckebier has worked for 30 years as the city manager in four cities, and began the position in Melbourne in 2003.
During his tenure, Mr. Schluckebier said he has been able to accomplish many goals with the help of an "awesome staff."
"We've been very successful in having a strong economic development and jobs growth partnership program," he said. "We've done very well with that, working together with the airport."
Additionally, he reflected on the expansion of the city's facilities, such as new and improved fire stations and a new city hall.
"Those are very good things, to be able to continue to build infrastructure and jobs' growth in the community," he said.
The Melbourne City Council has been tasked with appointing a new city manager, a decision that Mr. Schluckebier said should be made by November or December.
"Certainly there is some time between when a new person is selected and when that person starts," he said. "I gave them a pretty significant amount of lead time. On June 7, I announced my retirement for January, and said I'd stay for another month or two if I needed to. If they make the decision in November or December, it doesn't mean someone starts the next day. To honor the entire recruitment process, sometimes it takes a while to do a good process."
Though he did not specify his post-retirement plans, he said he would like to find a career with less demanding hours - working 35 to 40 hours per week rather than the 55 to 60 hours the city manager position often requires.
He said he would miss solving problems and being part of a group that accomplishes things, but above all, he will miss the great city staff of Melbourne.
"They are very good people to work with," Mr. Schluckebier said. "We have pretty significant operations, and by and large, we have some pretty doggone good people."