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Harrisonville's hiring of Moody stalls

by Alan McArthur
Landmark reporter

Former Platte City Administrator Keith Moody is being considered for the city administrator position in Harrisonville, Mo.

The hiring of Moody may have hit a snag on Monday when only four of the city's eight aldermen voted in favor of an ordinance to authorize Harrisonville Mayor Kevin W. Wood to hire Moody to the position.

On Monday night, an ordinance on the city's agenda would have allowed the mayor to appoint Moody to the position. The ordinance would have required a majority of the board to be in favor, according to Sheryl Stanley, communication information specialist with the city of Harrisonville.

The Harrisonville Board of Aldermen has eight members, and three voted against the ordinance with one member absent.

According to the municipal codes for Harrisonville, “A qualified person shall be appointed City Administrator for the City by the Mayor upon the approval of a majority of the Board of Aldermen.”

In order to hire Moody, the board will have to put the ordinance on the agenda again and have five aldermen vote in favor of it. The next scheduled meeting is on Monday, Oct. 20 at 7 p.m.

On Tuesday, Moody said he had not heard from the city about when a possible vote would be held. Moody said the community has a lot of opportunities to grow.

“It is a great community with lots of opportunities,” said Moody. “The community has a great staff that is experienced.”

Gary Kidd, a Harrisonville alderman, has been vocal in opposition to the contract with Moody.

“The man isn’t right for Harrisonville. I don’t want Mr. Moody,” Kidd told the The Cass County Democrat Missourian newspaper in a story published Oct. 2. Kidd also encouraged a Google search on the Internet to access public records pertaining to Moody’s service in Platte City.

A phone call to Kidd by The Landmark had not been returned at press time.

In a phone conversation with The Landmark on Tuesday, Moody said he has not talked with Kidd about the alderman's concerns.

“I haven't had a chance to talk with him to find out his objections,” said Moody.

Moody said that if he gets the job he plans to move to Harrisonville soon.

“Most city administrator positions require that you live in the area,” said Moody.

Harrisonville is located about 60 miles south of Platte City and has a population of around 9,000 according to the 2000 U.S. Census.

Moody's tenure in Platte City saw the implementation of a capital improvements project to repave the city's streets, the development of the Platte Valley Plaza and a failed annexation proposal south of Platte City. He was criticized for a perceived lack of public relations skills and some business owners believed he was inconsistent in enforcing certain city codes.

Moody was making around $73,000 as city administrator. Jason Metten was hired as city administrator for Platte City and began on Sept. 1 with a salary of $75,000.



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