Dan Grassick, the city’s public works director since 2013, will be leaving Cannon Beach to spend time with his family. The public works director supervises the work of 13 employees and manages an average annual operations budget of $5 million and an average capital budget of $500,000.
“The expertise you had with that guy was amazing — you almost never find it in a town of this size,” City Manager Brant Kucera said.
Because of vacation time accrued, Grassick plans an April 28 departure.
“My life priorities shifted recently and I realized I need to focus on my wife and grandkids while I am still able and healthy,” Grassick said. “I have enjoyed my time here with the entire management team and especially the public works staff. These are very dedicated and passionate staff who take pride in the work they do every day for the citizens, as well as environmental sustainability.”
Grassick was hired in 2013 after a nationally advertised search that drew 35 applicants. With the U.S. Air Force for 29 years, both active duty and reserve, he worked in an engineering capacity as an instructor, liaisons officer and commander before acquiring municipal works experience in Albany and Lebanon.
Kucera credited Grassick with water, wastewater and parks master plan development during his nearly four years in Cannon Beach.
“The other thing, too, that I’m really proud with Dan is the street-overlay program, where he’s tried to routinely maintain our streets, as well as to look to maintain the unpaved streets,” Kucera said.
The city’s RV Resort witnessed a “huge upgrade” under Grassick’s supervision, bringing in electrical, water and sewer to the area east of U.S. Highway 101, Kucera said. “That property has gone seamlessly. It really positions us in the future for the kind of experience campers are looking for.”
Grassick said, “Every week seems to bring a new topic for discussion and potential problem solving. The community involvement has been interesting and emphasizes the importance of both written and verbal communication to a very diverse audience with wide ranging perspectives on all issues.”
The position is advertised at a salary range of $73,000 to $88,000.
According to the advertisement posted on the city’s website and published nationally, the director plans, organizes, integrates and directs the programs and maintenance functions of the Public Works Department including water treatment and distribution system, roads and streets, wastewater treatment plant and wastewater collection system, stormwater, recycling, and parks and all facilities.
“I’m looking for someone who has really strong personnel experience,” Kucera said. “We have a wide array of workers in public works, from very experienced to brand new.”
Candidates experienced in budgeting, managing bid processes, project management and the performance of contractors are sought.
“While this is not a typical engineering project design and construction position, the opportunities for working on standard fare such as water lines, sewer lines, streets and treatment plant operations are there, as well as all the subtle community issues that come with being a very popular tourist destination community,” Grassick said. “It’s a continuous education and learning environment that ensures you stay energized and engaged every day.”
All applications and resumes must be received at Cannon Beach City Hall by Feb. 28.
“Dan really brought a lot to the table,” Kucera said. “One person doesn’t make an organization, but Dan was a very important part of Cannon Beach. He’s a great guy to work with. I felt like he’s a friend. It’s going to be hard to replace him.”