The first Columbus City Council meeting under new Mayor Jim Lienhoop has held Monday evening. The meeting was largely organizational.
Lienhoop’s Director of Administration and Community Development, Mary Ferdon, explained that the transition team has been working on the leadership structure since last June. Prior to Lienhoop’s swearing-in, Ferdon said the mayor would have 15 to 16 people reporting directly to her. She says that with so many people required to get direction on a daily basis, the Mayor’s core concerns could get bogged-down by not receiving the attention he would like to give them. Ferdon reminded the council that Lienhoop’s core concerns are business, employment, community development and quality of life.
With that, the Mayor has approved a change that would cut the number of people reporting directly to the mayor each day, by half. Employees and department heads working in the fields of animal care, the arts, human rights, housing, Human Resources, IT and more would report to the Director of Administration. Ferdon says this change will allow the city’s business to be done in a more efficient manner. Mayor Lienhoop did add that he will be available to those who need to see him.
The city council also elected a new President Pro Tempore. Third District Councilman Frank Jerome received unanimous support. He was nominated by the previous President Pro Tempore, Tim Shuffett.