“For now, we’re not going to fill that position,” Cox said. “We’re going to take a little time and evaluate the structure of that organization.”
Kim King, parks administration officer, and Kurt Schroeder, the city’s maintenance, trails and open space manager, will share management responsibilities, Cox said. Both will report to Nancy Johnson, assistant city manager, he said.
Butcher, 57, said he retired after 26 years with the city to spend more time with his family, but people with ties to the parks department said he was reorganized out of a job.
“That’s not true,” Cox said. “Paul came to us, and he just said it was time.”
Cox said Butcher’s retirement created an opportunity for the city “to take a breath” and evaluate the parks department.
“One of the things that we’ve done – and this is almost from day one when Penny got here – was to downsize the management structure” of city government, Cox said, referring to former City Manager Penelope Culbreth-Graft.
“If there are opportunities to do that in the parks department (or any other department), we’ll certainly do it,” he said.