Bainbridge agrees to $150K contract for new manager

Doug Schulze
Doug Schulze's contract with the city of Bainbridge Island was approved Wednesday, Sept. 26.
— image credit: Richard D. Oxley / Bainbridge Island Review

After playing the field, and a brief courtship, the city council has made it official. Douglas Schulze is the next city manager of Bainbridge Island.

“I am humbled and honored to have been selected by the city council to serve as the next Bainbridge Island city manager,” Schulze said after the approval. “My wife and I look forward to becoming active members of such a fantastic community.”

By unanimous vote — 6-0 with Councilman Bob Scales absent — a three-year contract for Schulze was approved by the council on Wednesday, Sept. 26.

Before the vote was taken, Mayor Debbi Lester reiterated the council’s confidence in their choice of Schulze, and his qualifications.

“Doug Schulze was previously the vice president of the Washington City/County Management Association, and recently he was elected president,” Lester said. “This tells me he is highly regarded by his peers and will have an excellent group of colleagues and resources to turn to.”

The city of Bainbridge Island will pay its new city manager a salary of $150,000 a year, according to his contract.

Schulze will also be paid up to $10,000 in moving expenses and will begin working on Nov. 5. The city will provide repayment of “reasonable travel, meal and lodging expenses” for up to two trips of five days or less for each trip by Schulze and his wife to Bainbridge to find housing.

His new salary is a move up for Schulze.

In 2006 he was hired to his previous position as city manager of Normandy Park at $106,000 a year. Just one year later in 2007, he received a pay bump up to $113,400 per year with a $300 monthly allowance for automobile expenses.

Schulze will also receive other benefits in the contract such as eligibility for cost of living adjustments, use of city-owned vehicles, and a smart phone. He will be reimbursed for any business use of his personal vehicle.

He will receive 10 days of vacation at the start of his employment and can accrue up to 40 days of vacation annually. He will also be able to accrue up to 40 days sick leave.

Schulze will receive medical coverage for himself and his family. Bainbridge Island will pay the premium for a $300,000 life insurance plan for Schulze as well as provide long-term disability insurance. Schulze will also be eligible to take part in the Public Employe Retirement System of Washington.

The city will pay for Schulze’s professional development, including professional dues and fees for his involvement in the International City/County Management Association and the Washington City/County Management Association. The city will also pay for his attendance at up to six professional association meeting per year, including registration costs, travel and lodging costs, and meal expenses.

To encourage his local involvement in civic groups, the city agrees to pay for up to three memberships for Schultz in island organizations.

According to the agreement, the city will provide annual performance reviews of Schulze.

The contract for Bainbridge Island also sets out what Schulze will be paid by Bainbridge Island if he is unable to serve out the three-year term of the agreement.

If Schulze voluntarily resigns his position during his first year on the job, he will be paid $15,000 in severance.

If the city council fires Schulze without cause during his first year on the job — or gives notice that it is looking for a new city manager — Schulze will get a severance package that includes a full year’s worth of salary and a payout for any unused vacation time.

If he is terminated or the city gives notice he will be replaced in his second or third year of the contract, Schulze  will receive six months of pay.

Both separation scenarios include the continuation of six months of health insurance coverage.

Schulze was one of three finalists that emerged from a pool of 44 initial applicants.

After a lengthy day and evening of interviews and council discussion, Schulze was selected as the council’s top pick for the job on Sept. 19.

Review writer Brian Kelly contributed to this article.

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