City finds a new alignment

LaGRANGE – When the city found itself with an empty economic developer position back in March, many questioned what would become of the role, and this week LaGrange City Council received an answer.

The city council reviewed an organizational realignment plan at their regular work session on Tuesday that outlined the shift in responsibilities from one individual to a variety of city employees like putting the city garage under its superintendent and purchasing under the accounting office. In fact, one the biggest changes was the increased responsibility for president of the Downtown Development Authority Scott Malone who will continue the city’s economic development work along with Economic Technician Kelly Bush.

“Just in terms of actual economic development, since we brought Scott Malone aboard, he has worked very closely with us, and he has gotten a lot of projects off the ground in LaGrange,” said City Manager Meg Kelsey. “He has taken on that role and is helping us out, and he is doing a tremendous job. We also hired last December Kelly Bush as an (economic) technician, so she is doing all the background paperwork.”

The other big change is that the city will look to hire a marketing and communications manager who will be responsible for developing, coordinating and implementing marketing initiatives in the city. The new manager will handle the print, online and television presence of the city.

Many other cities have marketing and communications managers, so LaGrange’s adoption of the position comes as little surprise for the fast-growing city. What is perhaps more worth notice being the stated reason why the city needs the position from the meeting’s handout:

“We need to communicate to the world, starting with our very own citizens, the greater purpose of our organization. Complacency is our greatest enemy. We can’t afford to sit on the sidelines and hope companies, industry, tourists, the media and potential residents stumble upon our Secret City. We need to forge our own future and craft a compelling case for people to take notice.”

Reach Alicia B. Hill at alicia.hill@lagrangenews.com or at 706-884-7311, Ext. 2154.