GARDINER — Councilors recently signed a three-year contract with Scott Morelli, who has been the city’s chief administrative officer since March 2010.

As part of the new agreement, the council approved a $2,500 market adjustment to Morelli’s salary for March and another $2,500 adjustment for March 2013. The third year of the contract will be negotiated. His current salary is $75,000.

Officials compared the city manager’s salary to similar positions in other cities to determine pay.

Morelli said he is honored to be able to continue to serve Gardiner residents and thanked the council for the opportunity.

“Although we have accomplished a good deal together, already we still have a lot of important initiatives to work on that will make Gardiner an even better place to live and to work,” Morelli said. “I am excited to be a part of that bright future.”

Mayor Andrew MacLean said Morelli came to Gardiner with solid credentials and a can-do attitude and has lived up to the council’s expectations during his first two years on the job.

MacLean said Morelli has presented the council with two annual budgets maintaining the current level of city services with an increase at less than the inflation rate; has made two excellent department head hires including Nate Rudy, Gardiner’s new director of economic development in June; and aggressively pursued the city’s current economic and community development initiatives.

“Scott is a young man with a bright future in municipal management, so we feel fortunate that he is committed to serving the city of Gardiner for another three years,” MacLean said.

Economic development has been a priority of the city. Last year, the city hired a marketing firm to help step up marketing efforts to promote downtown and the Libby Hill business Park.

Morelli replaced Anne Davis, the Gardiner Public Library director who filled in as interim city manager for 10 months after councilors could not reach an agreement on renewing Jeff Kobrock’s contract. Kobrock resigned from the city manager’s position in June 2009.

A visit to Morelli’s office last Tuesday revealed a busy schedule. Morelli had one meeting after another — he met first with City Clerk Deirdre Berglund and Davis, who also serves on the Greater Gardiner Riverfest Committee, to talk about fees for nonprofit organizations.

“Then I met with Nate Rudy (director of economic and community development) to talk about marketing Libby Hill (business park),” he said. “And I’ll be meeting with the Richmond (Select Board) to discuss coming back to Gardiner for ambulance services.”

The 36-year-old Bangor native received a bachelor’s degree in public management and a minor in political science from the University of Maine. He received a master’s degree in public administration from Syracuse University.

Previous municipal experience includes six years of combined service to the towns of Framingham, Mass., and Waterboro, Maine.

Morelli is a member of the International City Management and the Maine Town and City Management associations.

Mechele Cooper — 621-5663

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