SALISBURY, NC (WBTV) - From the City of Salisbury: With the upcoming retirement of Assistant City Manager John Sofley, and a department change for a former human resources employee, Salisbury management will fill the two vacant positions with revised job titles and responsibilities.
A full-time city attorney and a human relations manager will join the team in the latter part of 2017.
The city attorney will assist in managing the growing complexity of municipal legal matters on a full-time basis. Currently, the city attorney is a part-time position. The successful candidate will advise City Council, city administration and boards and commissions on legal issues; serve as a legislative liaison with state and federal governments; represent the city in legal matters, including bringing suit where necessary and handle appellate litigation; and negotiate and draft all contracts, deeds, leases, releases and other legal documents on behalf of Salisbury.
External legal counsel may still be employed to handle on-going, specialized litigation.
The human relations manager will be a vital part of managing the city's inclusion programs, and working closely with councils, such as the Human Relations and Salisbury Youth Councils. Given the challenges that face diverse communities and the unique circumstances that face Salisbury in particular, the position will work to create an environment of hospitality, inclusiveness, acceptance and appreciation for all citizens. In addition, the role will work with neighborhoods facing housing and crime issues; develop, direct and implement programs and activities to improve community relations; and provide diversity training for employees and other entities.
"There is no doubt that our country in general has faced some struggles in recent years where inclusion and equal opportunity for all are concerned," said W. Lane Bailey, Salisbury city manager. "Some of those same challenges certainly occur here locally. Because identifying and addressing these concerns are necessary for a successful community, I feel the human relations position is essential for Salisbury's future."
The city attorney will be appointed by the Mayor and City Council, but will report directly to the city manager. The human relations manager will also report to the city manager. Both positions are open until filled.
The two new roles added to the organization are not the sole changes to the management team reorganization. With the elimination of one of the two assistant city manager positions, Assistant to the City Manager Kelly Baker will take on additional duties in her new role.