Interviews to be held for new engineer in Pell City
by Elsie Hodnett
Sep 15, 2011 | 854 views |  0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
PELL CITY — The council will conduct interviews for a new city engineer Friday.

“We see a real need for a city engineer,” Mayor Bill Hereford said. “We had one in place a number of years ago, but after he left he was not replaced.”

Hereford said five candidates are set for an interview, beginning at 8 a.m. in City Hall. The interviews are open to the public.

Applicants in no particular order include Essam Ahmad, of Brundidge, AL, Karen Phillips, of Moody, Fred Gauntt III, of Pell City, Joe Hutto Jr., of Pell City, and John Anthony, of Hoover.

Hereford said an in-house city engineer could save the city a substantial amount of money.

“It’s an idea that’s been tossed around several times, ever since I’ve been in office,” he said.

Hereford said the city is involved in major projects, such as the ongoing sewer rehabilitation, that require engineering services.

“The person would more than pay his or her way,” he said. “We want to be as self-sufficient as a city as we can be. There are just so many instances where you need an engineer, such as roadwork and planning and zoning matters. Hiring a city engineer would bring the day-to-day engineering needs in-house, and give the city better control over our major projects as well.”

Hereford said the council has not set a salary for the city engineer position.

“We want to conduct the interviews first and get that process out of the way,” he said. “If we find someone we believe fits that bill, then we will talk salary with that person.”

According to the job description approved by the council in August, “the city engineer is responsible for the management and administration of the Engineering Department and for providing highly skilled engineering services to the city on a wide variety of projects. This is a professional position requiring an individual who is capable of exercising independent judgment and who possesses the educational and relevant experience as relates to Civil Engineering principles. The position of City Engineer requires an Alabama Professional Engineer’s license. The City Engineer is responsible to the mayor.”

Required knowledge, skills and abilities includes:

• Hold a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering and be licensed as a professional engineer in the State of Alabama with a minimum of three years responsible experience in civil engineering. Experience in managing and supervising others desired.

• Knowledge of the principles and practices of civil engineering, particularly as applied to municipal public works.

• Knowledge of public works design, construction and maintenance methods, materials and equipment.

• Knowledge of applicable laws and regulatory codes related to the development and construction of public improvement projects.

The job description also states the “mayor and council may determine in their discretion that an applicant by virtue of education, training and/or experience possesses the equivalent of any particular job requirement.”

Contact Elsie Hodnett at

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