The Cherokee City Council has entered an employee agreement contract with interim City Manager Donald B. Eikmeier to assume the duties of City Administrator/Manager on a full-time basis.
The Council confirmed Eikmeier's employment at Tuesday night's City Council meeting. Eikmeier will be paid $95,000 annually in 26 equal payments, effective December 1, 2008.
Terms in the three-year contract call for no salary adjustment during the first three years, with the agreement subject to extension on terms and conditions as agreed upon by the City and Eikmeier.
The City also will pay Eikmeier $200 monthly for a transportation allowance, with Eikmeier providing his own vehicle at his expense. The monthly payments continue until the employee agreement terminates. The IRS rate for mileage and travel expenses will be paid for necessary business travel greater than 100 miles round trip.
The City also agrees to provide medical, major medical, and disability coverage to Eikmeier, and medical and major medical coverage for dependents on the same terms as provided for non-union personnel working for the City.
The City agrees to provide life insurance on the employee on the same terms as provided to non-union personnel.
Eikmeier will be provided 10 working days of vacation per calendar year, including a 10-day vacation credit beginning Jan. 1, 2009, for use in Year 2009. One day of sick leave will accrue each month beginning Dec. 1, 2008, for the term of the agreement.
The City will reimburse Eikmeier for all approved employment-related expenses, including meals, training, memberships, and subscriptions.
In the event Eikmeier is terminated by the City during the first year of his employment, there will be no severance provided. If termination occurs in the second year, the City will pay one month of salary and insurances in addition to actual time employed by the City. If he is terminated in the third year, the City will pay two months of salary and insurances for the same period in addition to actual time employed by the City. If the employee is terminated for conviction of an illegal act, there will be no severance paid.
Eikmeier will maintain two homes - one within the City of Cherokee which will be paid for by him. His vehicle must be licensed in Iowa and Cherokee County. Because of family obligations in the Omaha area, Eikmeier also will maintain a home there.
Eikmeier will work a four-day work week (usually Monday through Thursday) with the understanding that the City Administrator/Manager will be responsible at all times to fulfill all duties and responsibilities required by his contract, and that unanticipated circumstances and emergencies may require him to work whatever days and hours necessary to satisfy the duties and responsibilities stipulated in the contract.
After meeting in executive session at its November 25 meeting to discuss offering Eikmeier the job, the Council unanimously approved hiring him at Tuesday's regularly scheduled meeting on a 4-0 vote. Council member Greg Stieneke was absent.
Eikmeier, founder of Innovative Government Services in Elkhorn, Neb., and his company, were previously hired by the Cherokee City Council to aid in the search for a new City Manager, and he has been serving as interim City Manager here since September 15.
His remuneration for serving as interim City Manager since Sept. 15 of this year was $37,340, including a six-week Phase 1 salary of $28,688, and a six-week Phase 2 salary of $8,652.
Eikmeier has 15 years experience as a city administrator, the last position being the city administrator in Elkhorn, Neb. The city ceased to exist as the result of involuntary annexation by the city of Omaha.
Prior to working for the city of Elkhorn, Eikmeier worked for the city of La Vista, Neb., the city of Seward, Neb., the Southeast Nebraska Development District, and the North Central Regional Planning Commission (Beloit, Kans.).
Eikmeier served as a sergeant in the U.S. Army, which included a tour of duty in Vietnam, which ended in August, 1971.
In 1974, he earned a BS in Geography with a minor in Political Science from Kearney State College (now the University of Nebraska at Kearney).
He subsequently has done graduate work at Akron University and at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln.
Before Eikmeier's interim appointment September 15, the City was without a City Manager since former City Administrator Ron Strickland was terminated in the spring of 2006.