City manager contract update

Mayor Carl Brewer threw his leg up on the sofa in his office this afternoon and relayed the basics of the on-going contract negotiations with Robert Layton, the Urbandale, Iowa city manager the council selected as Wichita’s next chief administrator. The catch, however, is that Brewer was only comfortable talking in some pretty broad terms.

In short, Layton submitted a request, the city counter-offered, Layton countered to that, the city responded with their changes, and now Brewer says he’s awaiting word from Layton on the latest version. Brewer said he’s pretty confident the city and Layton have agreed on a car and cell phone allowance (though he didn’t disclosed what it is), but he said all other aspects of the contract are still in play. Brewer said he’d like to have a contract ready for a city council vote next Tuesday, but he said that’s just a hope. If the contract isn’t ready for a vote then, the council will likely have to call a special meeting because there will likely be no meeting Dec. 23 and there is no meeting Dec. 30, making Jan. 6 the next regular meeting. Layton has said he’d like to move to Wichita around mid-January, but he noted that that depends on Urbandale’s budget, contract negotiations and the terms of his existing contract in Iowa, which require him to give 60 days notice — unless the city council there agrees to let him leave early. Stay tuned…