By DON STINE
John “Jack” Kelly, a former Jersey City business administrator, was unanimously appointed as Asbury Park’s new City Manager at Wednesday’s City Council meeting.
Kelly, 55, said he retired in August and that friends told him he should apply for the job in Asbury Park.
“Asbury Park is a great town going through its own gentrification process and I would like to move that forward by working here,” he said.
Mayor Myra Campbell said that more than 125 candidates submitted their resumes for the position. After a special committee reviewed the applications, the list was narrowed down to 25 candidates, which were then sent to every city council member.
“This all took quite some time,” she said.
Those candidates were eventually narrowed down to the top three to five candidates.
“I am very confident (Kelly) can do the job, especially with his expertise in Jersey City and Orange,” Campbell said.
Kelly’s contract will run from Feb. 1 to Dec. 31. Human Services Director Anthony Nuccio will remain in the role of acting-city manager until the end of this month and meetings have returned to the second and fourth Wednesdays.
Due to a change of government referendum, a new city government will be formed on Jan. 1, 2015. However, in order for Kelly to be replaced the city would need approval state Department of Community Affairs Division of Local Government Services under the state’s transitional aid agreement. The same applies to any department heads in the city.
Kelly, who was also worked in the Orange finance office for 21 years, said he has plans to move from Millington to Asbury Park in the near future.
He will be paid $140,000 for the 11 months he serves and be provided with a city vehicle to be used only for city business.
Kelly replaces Terence Reidy who held the job for 10 years and stepped down effective Oct. 31.
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