West Lake Hills City Council has begun the process of hiring a new administrator, following the termination of Robert Wood’s contract, who filled the position for 12 years.

City Council approved a contract Sept. 11 with Strategic Government Resources, a Texas company specializing in recruitment and training services for local government positions.

Per the contract, costs will not exceed the maximum price of $26,500, with $18,500 allocated to professional services and $8,000 in unspecified expenses. Estimated costs could be lower depending on how long it takes to fill the position, Council Member Brian Plunkett said.

According to SGR, the city administrator recruitment process could take between two and five months. Mayor Linda Anthony said the projected time frame speaks to the seriousness of the position.

“This is not something we want to rush through … honestly, personality [of the city administrator] is key, we’re a small city,” Anthony said, adding that council members Plunkett and Darin Walker will serve on a subcommittee to aid the recruitment process.

Council also voted to fill an open position on the Zoning and Planning Commission during the same meeting, and Anthony mentioned the interview process is currently underway for a new city secretary.