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Committee opts for more time to pick HR director

Instead of voting, county panel sets special meeting for March 1

The Grundy County Personnel Committee did not vote on a new Human Resources Director Thursday and is taking some more time to decide.

The committee met for its regular meeting Thursday, but discussed very little regarding the human resources position in open session. When they came out of executive session, they voted to hold a special meeting at 9 a.m. Friday, March 1.

“We’re going to continue to work on the HR position,” said committee chairwoman Vicki Geiger after executive session. “If we’re not able to find the right person, we’re going to consider bringing in someone part-time to help.”

Geiger explained after the meeting that the county has some applicants who are possibilities for the position, but the committee has not decided on someone yet. If one is not chosen soon, they may hire someone to assist the current human resources assistant Linda Ragan, who currently has taken on all the human resources duties.

The county is on the hunt for a new director because its recent hire quit last week after less than a week on the job.

Lindsay Ferguson was hired as the part-time director, but quit because she felt she was not the most-qualified person to resolve the issues the county is currently having, said Geiger last week.

These issues include the county looking into department budgets after some elected officials were found to have given bonuses out without the county board knowing. Although not illegal, some board members have called this an ethical issue and unfair to other county employees.

There is also an investigation of the health department to see if an employee or employees have committed theft.

Ferguson came to the county with six years’ experience in human resources at Morris Hospital & Healthcare Centers. The county’s previous HR director, Denise Kasper, resigned from the position in November with one day notice. She said then she was taking another job.

At the special meeting March 9, the committee will also discuss the possibility of making board secretary Sandy Pommier an administrative assistant. The committee also will review the applicants for the county administrator position, which is now going to be part-time.

“Sandy has been doing a lot of the work (since the previous county administrator left) and we feel we need to reward her for that,” Geiger said.

Previous County Administrator Shawn Hamilton left for another position. A full-time county administrator position was posted last fall, but that process began before the new board members were seated. With the new members in place, a search was started again, but for a part-time administrator. 

The job description was re-posted and Geiger asked the committee to review the candidates in preparation for discussion at the special meeting.

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