Columbia hires new city administrator

Pictured, from left, are interim Columbia city administrator Al Hudzik with newly hired city administrator Douglas Brimm on Monday night.  

The Columbia City Council approved the hiring of a new city administrator during its meeting on Monday night.

The new hire is Douglas Brimm, a Dupo native who has served as city administrator in Trenton the past seven years. 

Brimm holds a bachelor degree in political science from the University of Illinois and a master of public administration and policy analysis degree from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

“I am grateful to Mayor (Kevin) Hutchinson and the city council for this opportunity to join the City of Columbia,” Brimm said in a written statement, adding that the mayor, city council and staff “exemplify the city’s commitment to enhancing the quality of life for Columbia’s residents and creating an inviting business environment.”

Brimm currently lives in Trenton with his wife and three children, but plans to relocate to Columbia soon, stating that “my family and I look forward to joining the community.”

Brimm will replace interim city administrator Al Hudzik, who took over temporarily when Jimmy Morani resigned in April after four years as Columbia’s city administrator.

Hudzik had previously served as Columbia’s city administrator until his retirement in 2014.

Also during Monday’s meeting, Hutchinson recognized Columbia accounting manager Linda Sharp for her recent completion of work necessary for certification by the Illinois Municipal Treasurers Association.

The city council voted to approve a resolution which allows for an interest-free loan with the Illinois Finance Authority in the amount of $200,000. This will be used to pay off the current loan used for the city’s new ambulance. 

Hutchinson estimated this loan will save the city nearly $19,000 in interest.

Aldermen also approved an agreement between the Illinois Department of Transportation and city on the future Quarry Road roundabout project. This agreement will authorize federal funds to the project for preliminary engineering services. 

The city will pay the consultant and seek 80 percent reimbursement from IDOT.

Monday’s meeting began on a somber note, as the mayor asked for a moment of silence after the Pledge of Allegiance in memory of Michelle Brown, former accounting specialist for the city. 

Brown, 51, died suddenly from breast cancer on July 30.

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