By Terry Lehrke, News Editor
Scott Saehr will be the new face at Pierz City Hall, starting Jan. 2, 2014.
He was selected out of three applicants for the new position of deputy clerk with the city.
In October, the Council voted to eliminate its utility billing clerk position and replace it with this new position.
At the time, Mayor Toby Egan said City Administrator Anna Gruber’s duties had increased as the Council asked her to do more and more in the city.
“She’s being overwhelmed with what we’re asking,” he said.
Saehr “stood out” said Gruber.
The city did a salary survey for such a position and found the range was between $17.51 – $21.04.
After negotiations, the city and Saehr agreed to $20 per hour for an average 30-hour week, with no benefits.
“After doing the interviews, I feel he’s going to be able to do above and beyond what we expected and needed,” said Gruber.
“He will be a huge asset to the city,” said Egan. “I think he is extremely well-rounded.”
Saehr and his wife, Emily, live near Harding.
Saehr grew up on a farm in Pierz, graduated from Healy High School and from the University of St. Thomas, where he played football and earned an entrepeneurship degree.
He also owns his own landscape business, “Scottie’s Log and Landscape,” and has worked for two years as director of sales and marketing with Smude Enterprises in Pierz.
Saehr said he’s excited about the new opportunity.
“I think working with the city, there’s a lot of opportunity to help the city grow,” he said. “I’m very passionate about trying to bring more people to the city … to bring the younger generation back, which is very important I think.”
Saehr said he and Emily want their kids to go to Pierz Schools someday.
“Everything we do is based out of Pierz,” he said. “Pierz is a safe community and I feel very comfortable in this area, we both do.”
Another aspect Saehr is looking forward to is “Getting to know more people in town and be part of a great community.”
“He brings a lot of broad experience,” said Gruber. “Marketing experience will be nice to have as an asset in the city.”
Gruber will add utility billing to her own duties, as well as some accounting duties former treasurer Maureen Watercott had done that were over and above what a city treasurer was required to do.
Pierz City Council Briefs
In other business Monday, the Pierz City Council:
• Voted to approve the city’s final levy at $280,515, a 0 percent increase for the seventh consecutive year;
• Noted a closed meeting was held with the city’s attorney to discuss the possible acquisition of 61 acres of land adjacent to the city’s golf course;
• Decided to work with the Planning and Zoning Commission to change verbiage in the city’s zoning ordinance to alleviate any misunderstanding in when and how city lots can be divided;
• Learned the cross country ski route at the Pierz Municipal Golf Course was ready to go, thanks to Chris Young’s labor and the use of Don Bujalski’s snowmobile; and
• Learned from Police Chief Eric Hanneken that residents who had complaints about sidewalks that have not been cleared of snow, should report them to City Hall.
The next Pierz City Council meeting is scheduled for Monday, Dec. 23, at 7 p.m.