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Kent Barton title changed to Manti city manager, JoAnn Otten now city recorder

 

By Suzanne Dean

Publisher

11-21-2019

 

MANTI—The Manti City Council has passed an ordinance establishing the job title of “city manager” and defining the city manager’s duties.

At a council meeting Nov. 7, the council voted to change the title of Kent Barton, which has been administrator-city recorder, to city manager. At the same time, the council changed the title of JoAnne Otten from deputy city

   Kent Barton

recorder to city recorder. There will be no change in compensation for either official.

Mayor Korry Soper said the change reflects the way Manti City has been run for a long time.

Under state statute, cities with 1,000 to 10,000 population are classified as “fifth- class cities.” Manti’s population is about 3,500.

In all fifth-class cities, the mayor is required to appoint a city recorder. Under state statute, the recorder’s duties include taking minutes in city council meetings, keeping city records, signing new ordinances to certify that they were passed by the city council, transmitting the certified property tax rate approved by the council to the county clerk and issuing and signing checks.

Barton’s predecessor, Bill Mickelson, became city recorder in the early 1980s. As the city grew and added staff, he took on administrative duties in addition to minute taking and record keeping. In the early 2000s, Michelson was given the hyphenated title of administrator-city recorder.

Several years after Mickelson started working for the city, Manti hired JoAnne Otten to handle record keeping and accounting functions and gave her the title deputy city recorder.

The new ordinance lists the duties of the city manager as directing all departments in the city, attending council meetings and participating in discussions (but not voting), overseeing preparation of the budget, keeping the city council apprized of the city’s financial condition and acting as purchasing agent for the city.

    JoAnn Otten

With passage of the ordinance, the only operational change will be that Otten, as city recorder, will take over minute-taking in city council meetings.

Passage of the ordinance “formalizes and brings our city code up to date with the manner in which these job functions are being performed,” Mayor Soper said.

Councilman Darren Dyring commented, “We’ve actually operated that way for 30 years. This is just making it official.”

In other discussion, Blake DeMill, the power superintendent, reported his crews had finished bringing power to the Foothill Subdivision, a 20-lot development from about 70 South to 100 South east of 600 East. So far, two homes have been built in the project.

Corey Hatch, public works director, said he had ordered streets signs for the Foothills development and Heritage Heights, a subdivision with about 25 lots between 100 and 200 South and also east of 600 East. Most of the lots in Heritage Heights have been sold.

Hatch also reported that the Utah Division of Water Quality had issued a permanent operating permit for Sister Spring, one of nine springs that supply culinary water to the city.

About three years ago, water from Sister Spring showed some cloudiness, and the spring’s output dropped. The city undertook a project to redevelop the spring.

After a water source is developed or redeveloped, water has to be tested frequently for about two years before a permanent use permit is issued and the source can go to a regular testing schedule.

Hatch said the redeveloped spring is capable of producing 103 million gallons per year, which is more than half of Manti City’s water needs. “It’s a good spring,” he said.

Hatch also reported on his crew’s continued work on the new sports complex north of the city. City crews are still erecting the light towers with about 10 more to go, he said.

In recent weeks, the crews had winterized the sprinkler system, fixed some gate latches and fixed some areas of fencing.

Hatch said the grass at the complex is still coming in in some areas, but the ground appears to be level.

“We don’t want to see [the complex] deteriorate at all. We want to stay on top of it,” he said.