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Lamb Officially appointed Parsons City Manager - KOAM TV 7

Lamb Officially appointed Parsons City Manager

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PARSONS, KANSAS -

After six months of serving as Interim City Manager and completing the interview process, City Clerk/Interim City Manager, Deborah (Debbie) Lamb, was officially appointed as the new Parsons City Manager. This official announcement came after the Parsons City Commission voted to accept the mutually agreed upon contract terms.

Here's a little bit about her background. Lamb was born and raised in Parsons and has devoted her career to the betterment of the community. She began working for the city as a part-time file clerk in the water department when she was still a student at Parsons High School. She continued working for the city while she attended Labette Community College. Lamb's dedication paid off. She earned the Deputy City Clerk position in 1981 and in December 2001 she was named City Clerk. Lamb currently has more than 41 years of service to the City Parsons. She earned her 40-year service award from the League of Kansas Municipalities in 2014.

Lamb and husband Terry enjoy spending time with family and outdoor activities.

When asked about her new role in city government, Lamb said, “It's a new day in Parsons. With the past behind us, we are moving forward.”

And with that, she sat down to talk about why she applied for the position of city manager and answered a series of questions for residents to get to know her and her positive philosophy.

Why did you apply for this position?

Lamb: I want to see Parsons move forward in a positive direction, and I want to be a part of that. Parsons has a lot of hidden treasures and we need to tout those, and let people know what a wonderful community Parsons has grown to be.

What do you bring to the City of Parsons?

Lamb: I bring a wealth of history and knowledge of government operations. I am a hard worker, I respect differing viewpoints, but I am not scared to jump in and get my hands dirty. I want to work with staff to restore trust in government and have more open, honest communication.

What are your first priorities as the new Parsons City Manager?

Lamb: In the first three months, I would like to start out by filling the City Clerk position that I have vacated. With the great support of city staff, I have been performing both jobs. That position needs to be filled so we can begin moving forward with other priorities. Also, we need to begin the 2016 budget process. Finally in the first three months, I want to work with the department heads to prioritize their needs, which will be an important part of the budget process. Within the first six months in my new role, we are going to create a balanced budget by efficiently using our resources and will begin to create a long range plan. That will include capital projects and a capital improvement plan. We need to be able to address capital concerns as they arise, including planning for the replacement of necessary equipment that allows us to maintain the city. Having accurate and attainable goals and plans in place will help our community move forward.

What is your philosophy when working with the public? And with staff?

Lamb: I believe in order to be successful in the city manager role, it is my duty to work with various entities. I have an open door policy, and I encourage the public to call at 421-7030 or send me an email at dlamb@parsonsks.com. As a city staff, we work very well as a team, and we have to in order to accomplish goals. I am proud of the fact that combined the city administrative staff has more than 225 years of service. I was here during the tornado and I saw first-hand how Parsons can step-up in adversity, and we have lost that drive over the past few years. I would like to see that change, and I think open, honest, transparency is one way to bring that back to our community.

What do you think are some of the most difficult issues facing Parsons right now?

Lamb: The number one issue facing our community right now, from a city government standpoint, is restoring trust and bringing truth and transparency back. This has been gradually eroding over the past decade and we are trying to turn the tide. Other issues include the declining tax base, money/funding, housing and aging population.

Other thoughts you'd like to share?

Lamb: I have been completely overwhelmed by the support of the community during my tenure as interim and as being named City Manager. And I would be remiss if I did not stop to thank the city employees for doing what they do. I believe we all have to work together for the common good of the community. You cannot get down this road [city manager role] all by yourself, it takes a team working toward goals.

Lamb's office is on the second floor of the Municipal Building, 112 S. 17th Street, in downtown Parsons. She can be reached at 620-421-7030 or dlamb@parsonsks.com.

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