Stanwood mayor fires city administrator

STANWOOD — City officials announced Friday that Stanwood’s top administrator has been fired.

The city’s employment contract with Joyce Papke was terminated effective April 16, city clerk Melissa Collins said.

Papke had served as city administrator since Dec. 1, 2007. She was placed on paid administrative leave April 12.

The Stanwood City Council met in executive session Thursday with attorney Grant Weed to discuss the personnel issue. Weed advised employees and elected officials not to discuss the circumstances that prompted the termination.

However, Mayor Dianne White said she took charge and takes responsibility for the firing. The city administrator serves at the pleasure of the mayor, she said.

“There was simply a need to move in another direction for the management of the city,” White said.

Working in Stanwood was a career highlight, Papke said.

“We have an exceptional city staff that is smart and dedicated, and consistently provides great service with very limited resources,” Papke said in an e-mail. “In addition, we enjoy an equally committed group of elected officials, as well as involved citizens, who truly care about their community. In my experience, Stanwood is an outstanding city and community and I have greatly benefited through my experience here.”

White said the city won’t have the money to hire another administrator for some time.

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