Port Orchard hiring freeze ends

The city of Port Orchard has ended its hiring freeze, and is currently in the process of filling four previously funded staff vacancies.

Additionally, the city is preparing for the retirement of Treasurer Kris Tompkins, who has worked for the city for 37 years, 35 as treasurer.

“It will be a big challenge to fill Kris’s position,” Mayor Lary Coppola said. “She did a terrific job, and was dedicated to the city.”

The treasurer’s job, which has a salary range of $91,000 to $103,000 per year, is now being advertised. The goal is to begin interviewing people in mid-May and extend an offer as soon as possible.

Coppola said he would like to see someone in place in early June, to give Tompkins a chance to train her replacement.

The timing of hiring a new treasurer creates a good news/bad news situation. The city will most likely save money on the new hire, as they will probably earn less than what Tompkins is now making. And with the trend toward government downsizing there could be a wider talent pool from which to choose. Or not.

“A lot of people have been laid off recently,” Coppola said. “But governments tend to hang on to the people who really know finance.”

The decision to hire a new treasurer is Coppola’s alone, although he said he would solicit Tompkins’ input as to whom to hire.

“My style is to hire the person who can do the work and let them do it themselves,” Coppola said.

Tompkins, the the longest-serving senior staff member in city government, was also the only city department head that Coppola kept on when he assumed the mayor’s office in 2008. He did

Two of the open positions has already been filled, with Port Orchard resident Deb Howard assuming the head of the city’s Human Resources department. Howard, who filled a similar position for the Kitsap Housing Authority, was recently laid off, according to Coppola.

Since Capri Corbett left her position as HR director last month, her duties have been assumed by Coppola and City Clerk Patti Kirkpatrick.

The police graveyard position, open since the resignation of Sgt. Dennis McCarthy resigned, has been filled internally by promoting Officer Trey Holden.

Other open positions are a part-time finance assistant and a meter reader for Public Works, the latter to replace Matt Ryan who died earlier this year.

For a description of all available jobs go to

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