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With cuts made, city staff adjusts

A new year brings a new way of doing things for some folks around Farmington City Hall.

Following last year's budget process, the city of Farmington lost administrative services director Lisa Shadick, administrative assistant Lisa Dargis, and parks and recreation maintenance supervisor Don Hayes.

Each individual carried a certain amount of responsibility around the building. Dargis coordinated the city's 2-year-old farmer's market. Shadick was in charge of everything related to elections.

Their absence means the city needs to figure out how to redistribute responsibilities. That's just what city administrator Peter Herlofsky has been working on doing so far this year.

For the most part, it's been a matter of moving individuals and their responsibilities to existing departments. The communications position held by Danielle Cahlander used to be part of Shadick's department. It now falls under the human resources department and is overseen by human resource director Brenda Wendlandt.

No one has to worry about elections any time soon. As of right now, all election-related issues will be handled by Herlofsky's office and staff.

"Everything is arbitrary right now," he said. "If things don't work out this way, we'll look at doing something different."

The city of Farmington has been in a state of change for quite a while already, he added. Since Herlofsky became city administrator five years ago, only two of the department directors have stayed the same - Wendlandt and parks and recreation supervisor Randy Distad. Several support staff members have changed, as well. One director position, the community development director post, was eliminated and those duties are handled by Herlofsky and economic development specialist Tina Hansmeier.

"We've been cutting slots at every opportunity presented," he said. "This is nothing new to us.

"We're doing our best to make this situation work out as best as possible," Herlofsky added.

Michelle Leonard

Michelle Leonard joined the Woodbury Bulletin staff in November, 2014, after 14 years covering news for the Bulletin's sister publication, the Farmington Rosemount Independent Town Pages.  Michelle earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications: News-Editorial from Mankato State University in 1991. She is an active member of the American Legion Auxiliary Clifford Larson Unit 189 of Farmington, and served as the 2014-15 Third District President to the American Legion Auxiliary Department of Minnesota. Michelle is also the volunteer coordinator for the Minnesota Newspaper Museum which is open annually during the Minnesota State Fair. She has earned Minnesota Newspaper Association awards in Investigative Reporting, Local News Coverage, Feature Photography and Column Writing. 

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