Austin council fires city administrator

Published 10:36 am Tuesday, December 3, 2013

AUSTIN — Jim Hurm is no longer Austin’s city administrator.

The Austin City Council voted unanimously to fire Hurm, effective immediately at the end of the Monday meeting. Hurm was not immediately available for comment, as he had apparently left the building before the meeting ended.

Jim Hurm

Jim Hurm

Austin Mayor Tom Stiehm didn’t go into detail about the City Council’s decision — council members discussed the matter in a closed session before the meeting — but an evaluation completed in September clearly indicates city department heads weren’t happy with Hurm’s job performance.

Email newsletter signup

“Mr. Hurm’s performance was deemed unacceptable with respect to staff supervision and department heads,” the report states.

It further adds, “A majority of department heads felt that Mr. Hurm did not properly manage the goals and expectations of city departments, would not accept and share responsibility for decisions made, and, further, stated that he did not effectively communicate pertinent information to their departments.”

An Associated Press story recently reviewed salaries of the top three highest-paid officials in 126 cities and surrounding counties in Minnesota. Hurm topped Austin’s salary at $109,179 per year.

In the evaluation, Hurm indicated he was surprised by how critical department heads were and said he would have liked to communicate with them to rectify the issues.

Hurm has been Austin’s city administrator since 2003.