Arroyo Grande residents shouldn’t be surprised if they experience a sense of déjà vu the next time they stop by City Hall.
After ousting a city manager for the second time in three years, the city once again contracted with an outside company to hire Robert McFall as an interim city manager. This will be the second time McFall, a former assistant city manager for the city of Glendale, has served in that position in Arroyo Grande.
The Arroyo Grande City Council approved an agreement with Regional Government Services, a contractor that provides solutions to short-term staffing needs, to temporarily hire McFall at its Aug. 9 meeting. The contract includes a $125 hourly billing rate for McFall’s services as interim city manager, and also provides a $1,700 monthly housing allowance. The billable hours are capped at no more than 960 over an eight-month period, for an estimated total of $133,600 for the contract period.
McFall will replace Dianne Thompson, who was fired in late June. In January 2015, the city contracted with Regional Government Services to use McFall as an interim city manager after the departure of longtime City Manager Steve Adams. That contract charged the city $120 an hour for McFall’s services, and also included a $1,700 housing allowance. A report from city staff to the council characterized McFall’s previous work with the city as an asset.
“His rapport with the department head team and other city employees will enable him to quickly come up to speed on issues and concerns and be an effective leader for the city,” the staff report stated. “He is exceptionally well qualified to fill the interim city manager position for the city of Arroyo Grande.”
While McFall once again takes up the mantle of interim city manager, Arroyo Grande is also looking for someone to permanently fill the position, which staff members believe will take about eight months.