HANFORD — The Hanford City Council met with community members Thursday to discuss what residents would like to see in the city’s future city manager.

At the Civic Auditorium, council members met one-on-one or in small groups to hear thoughts and concerns about the City Manager position that the city is currently hiring for.

While there weren’t as many community members as they would have liked, Mayor Sue Sorensen said the people who felt like they wanted to share their thoughts were able to do so.

People were able to circulate and talk to all or just some of the council members and Sorensen said it’s now the council’s job to get together and discuss what they heard from the public.

She said a lot of comments she heard were similar to what the city council had talked about previously and agreed to put in the application, like someone who is familiar with the area or at least the Central Valley and someone who would be willing to move to Hanford and live here.

“Everything followed along nicely with the information on the application,” she said.

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Sorensen said things have been going smoothly with Interim City Manager Mike Olmos and she believes the community is confident in the city’s ability to hire the right person for the permanent position.

The application period for the job is over. Sorensen said city staff reviewed the applications and have narrowed it down to the people who meet the requirements.

“We now have a list of qualified candidates,” Sorensen said.

Next, the candidates will go through a professional panel of peers who will provide an evaluation for council to review. Council with then go through the interview process by the end of the month to narrow it down to 2-3 candidates.

After another round of interviews, Sorensen the council should have a decision by mid-October or November.

Along with the community input, Sorensen said citizens have sent emails, talked to council members and spoken at public comment about the issue as well. She encourages anyone who still has thoughts or concerns to attend council meetings.

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The reporter can be reached at 583-2423 or jzavala@hanfordsentinel.com

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