Director of Neighborhood and Community Services

City of Ottawa

Ottawa, KS

Experience Level: Senior

AICP Certification: AICP Preferred

Salary: $3,518.42 to $5,453.20 bi-weekly

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Under supervision of the City Manager, the Director of Neighborhood and Community Services performs high-level and complex administrative duties and is responsible for overseeing the code enforcement, planning, and zoning activities, the review of building plans and permit applications along with the building maintenance division. In addition, assists the Franklin County Development Council with development opportunities. The position assists with current and future planning needs and ensures proper development and planning practices in compliance with the City’s Master Plan. Oversees the Planning Commission, Board of Zoning Appeals, Construction Boards of Appeals and to establish and interpret general planning and zoning policies. Ensures that applicable laws and policies related to building and environmental codes are updated and enforced.

Essential Job Functions:

  • Provide administration and supervision of the Neighborhood and Community Services Department.
  • Provide staff support to the Planning Commission, Board of Zoning Appeals, Construction Boards of Appeals and City Manager, including preparing reports and researching planning issues.
  • Evaluates and recommends candidates for community development programs.
  • Work with other department directors, City Staff, and the City Commission to coordinate development projects.
  • Represents department at community meetings and public forums to provide information on department activities.
  • Prepares reports for the City Commission and other government agencies on program activities and accomplishments.
  • Provide customer service and work to resolve issues related to planning, nuisance, and code work.
  • Ensures compliance of inspections of developments and properties.
  • Review all planning documents and permits for compliance with local, state, and federal regulations.
  • Revise and develop City ordinances.
  • Analyzes community needs to determine programs/projects which will have the greatest benefit from grant funding.
  • Directs and approves development and coordination of plans, programs, and projects carried out through grant funds and in accordance with City, State, and Federal regulations; maintains liaison with grantor agency, citizen advisory committees, public agencies, program applicants, and the general public. Maintain liaison with grantor agency, citizen advisory committees, public agencies, program applicants, and the general public.
  • Prepare and administer department budgets.
  • Oversee investigations and resolutions to zoning violations. 
  • Advise and inform the City Manager on issues involving major developments, downtown revitalization, historic preservation, code enforcement issues, urban design issues, etc.

Ancillary Job Functions:

  • Participate in economic development activities, including tax increment financing, project negotiation, and business development.
  • Ensure proper training of subordinate staff. 
  • Ensure the enforcement of the City’s adopted codes and administrative policies/procedures. 
  • Ensure that services to the public and to developers are provided in a respectful and professional manner. 
  • Comply with all City ordinances and policies.
  • Assist other departments and perform other related duties as assigned.

Education and Experience: (Combination of education, training, and experience will be considered)

  • Bachelor’s degree in Planning, Engineering, Business, Public Administration, or related field required; Master’s degree preferred.
  • AICP preferred.
  • Minimum of seven years of experience in professional city or county planning.
  • Minimum of three years of building and environmental code enforcement experience.
  • Minimum of ten years of progressively responsible managerial experience in state or local government preferred.
  • Certification from the American Institute of Certified Planners preferred.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities: (not all inclusive)

  • Strong verbal and written communication skills which would include making presentations to the Governing Body and Advisory Boards.
  • Ability to prepare and analyze comprehensive written reports.
  • Must have excellent analytical, managerial, organizational, and public relations skills.
  • Understanding of economic development incentives such as tax abatement processes, tax increment financing industrial revenue bonds, and community development block grant programs.
  • Thorough knowledge of planning laws, statutes, cartography, and software programs. 
  • Ability to prepare and analyze comprehensive written reports. 
  • Must have excellent working knowledge of Microsoft Office 365.
  • Ability to make high-level decisions quickly. 
  • Working knowledge of technical drawings and mathematics. 
  • Ability to interpret ordinances, data, written instructions, memos, proposals, technical manuals, blueprints, reports, and schematics. 
  • Thorough knowledge of City, State, and Federal building and environmental codes and regulations. 
  • Working knowledge of construction materials, drafting, and general accounting. 
  • Familiarity with GIS and ERIS data. Ability to carry out projects and duties to their completion following prescribed policies and procedures.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective relationships with other employees, City officials, business entities, and the general public.
  • Strong interpersonal skills. 
  • Excellent negotiation and problem-solving skills.
  • Ability to effectively organize and prioritize work as well as concentrate on multiple tasks simultaneously.
  • Ability to work under general supervision and make responsible decisions. 
  • Ability to use good judgment and think quickly and rationally in difficult or stressful situations.

Work Environment:

  • May be exposed to wet/humid conditions, inclement outdoor weather, extreme temperatures, airborne particles/fumes, or risk of electrical shock when visiting construction/new development sites.

Physical Abilities: (Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform essential functions)

  • Must be able to sit for extended periods of time.
  • Must be able to talk, hear, stand, walk over uneven terrain, and drive.
  • Must be able to have repetitive wrist/hand/finger movement and manual dexterity.
  • Must have precise hand-eye coordination, clarity of vision, three-dimensional vision, and ability to identify/distinguish colors.
  • Must be able to lift up to 30 pounds.
  • Regular attendance is a necessary and essential function.

Application: Candidates must also attach a cover letter, resume and three professional references.

The residency requirement for new and current officers of the City of Ottawa, KS as set forth in Section 2-303 of Article II, of Chapter 3 of the Municipal Code of the City of Ottawa, Kansas:   As full-time employees, City officers shall reside within 35 miles of the corporate limits of the City of Ottawa within six (6) months of such appointment. 

E-Mail Confirmation:  After your application has been received by the City of Ottawa, you will receive confirmation by e-mail. Please check your SPAM filter or JUNK Mail. If you have not received confirmation within 48 hours of submitting your application, please call 785-229-3634 to verify application has been received. For additional information, contact Human Resources at 785-229-3634 or e-mail [email protected].

Posted May 16, 2023, 3:02 PM PDT

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