Williams hires new city manager

Former city manager of Somerton to begin duties in Williams Dec. 4

WILLIAMS, Ariz. — After a four month search process, Williams City Council members selected William Lee as the new city manager.

Council members approved the hiring of Lee Nov. 16 after working through an outlined hiring process. Lee will begin Dec. 4.

The city received dozens of applications for the position and staff members spent time reading through the applications before narrowing the field to five applicants. Mayor John Moore said he believes Lee will be a good fit for the Williams community.

“He is strong in parks and recreation,” Moore said. “I was looking for a common sense guy, and I think we got one.”

Lee was hired after former Williams City Manager Skylor Miller resigned from the position after serving for one-year.

According to Moore, Lee is the current city manager of Somerton, Arizona. He has served in that capacity since 2009. Prior to that he was the general service director for four years, and the parks and recreation director for two years at Camp Verde.

Hospital District fees

In other council news, the Williams Hospital District Board of Directors requested the city waive building fees for the construction of the new healthcare facility on Fourth Street.

Moore discussed the benefits of waiving the fee with the council. He said waiving the fees would allow the Hospital District to use the money elsewhere in the construction of the facility.

The council agree to waive the $30,239 required for the construction.

Concerns regarding helicopter in residential area

Kim Kadletz, a resident of the Highland Meadows subdivision, expressed his concern regarding a neighbor landing a helicopter at a residence near his home. He said the helicopter scares his animals and believes the landing would be better at the airport.

Kadletz said he would like the city to modify the City Code to restrict the landings.

Greater Williams Community Fund

Barbara Brutvan presented an update on the Greater Williams Community Fund to the council. She reminded the council of their mission which is to serve, collaborate and mobilize steering philanthropy for a better Arizona and specifically a better Williams.

Brutvan said the fund currently has $220,000 and the organization has given away $88,000 to Williams organizations since its inception in 2005.

On Founder’s Day, the organization asks businesses to give either a portion of what they take in that day to the fund, or to just simply donate to the fund itself. They do a grant workshop in February and have a grant award ceremony in July or August each year.

“We award nonprofits, schools, tribal entities and government programs,” Brutvan said. “Last year we donated $9,575 that was split between the Arizona Science Center, Bill Williams Senior Center, Williams Alliance for the Arts, the Williams Fire Department and the Williams Public Library.”

Brutvan said any money donated goes to the fund and only the interest is distributed. She said all of the money stays in Williams.

“We are asking the council to invest in the community in the giving that lasts forever,” Brutvan said.

Williams Historic Photo Project

Margaret Hangan and Andrea Dunn presented an update to the council about the status of the Williams Historic Photo Project.

She said the U.S. Forest Service and the Williams Public Library have partnered on the historic photo project and completed the move from the library to the Williams Visitor Center.

“We’ve turned it into a museum/historic photo display area,” Dunn said.

The organization received two grants this year, one from the Greater Williams Community Fund and the other from the Grand Canyon Historical Society. Hangan said they received $3,200 in grant money and $400 in donations.

“We’ve accomplished quite a bit,” Hangan said. “We’ve moved into the new space which has allowed us to expand. Last year it was me and a computer next door. Now we have a large space where we have two workstations with two computers and two scanners.”

This summer the Visitor Center museum area was used by Kaibab National Forest for monthly archaeology lectures and natural and cultural resource talks.

Hangan said approximately 30,000 people visited the museum area of the visitor center this year. She said many people have also visited the Williams Historic Photo Project Facebook page, where Hangan posts historic photos frequently.

The organization recently acquired an historic mountain man outfit they plan to display at the museum.

The group is also attempting to partner with Northern Arizona University on a restoration project.

Other council news

Rob Krombeen presented a plaque to the city for their support for the 2017 Man vs. Machine bike race. Krombeen said the event hosted 350 riders.

He said the group hopes to add a mountain bike race to the event next year.

The council approved the purchase of a Lowboy 50T trailer for the new paving equipment.

The city hired American Legal to codify the Williams City Code. The group will review all of the existing code book, ordinances and resolutions.

Council approved the purchase of a new network recording system for the Williams Police Department dispatch center. Theresa Johnson said the current network system is showing wear. She said the new system will record both telephone and radio traffic.

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