Sunday, April 08, 2001

Mt. Healthy's McInerney leaving

Safety-service director plans return to Massachusetts home

By Lew Moores
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        MOUNT HEALTHY — Tim McInerney, this city's safety-service director since the fall of 1997, has tentatively accepted a position as town manager of Salisbury, Mass., a seacoast town in the northeastern part of the state.

        If a contract can be worked out with the town of about 7,500 — which swells to about 25,000 in the summer — Mr. McInerney could leave here by mid-May. Mr. McInerney is a native of Lowell, Mass., about 30 miles from Salisbury.

        “I'm from that area, my wife's from there,” said Mr. McInerney, who has spent summers at Salisbury.

        “But Mount Healthy has been my opportunity to break into city government. I appreciate the opportunity (former Mayor) Terry Todd gave me when he hired me.”

        City officials here will be as sorry to see him go as Salisbury officials are eager that he accept the position.

        Mount Healthy Mayor Ross Bittner said Mr. McInerney was conscientious, worked hard and accomplished much in just three years. He cited his work on the city's traffic signals, on capital improvements, improvements in the city's business district, developing a master plan for Mount Healthy Park and forging a public-private partnership with the city's business community.

        “Tim was real diligent on a lot of things,” said Mayor Bittner.

        “He spent a lot of hours on the job. He developed a good working relationship with the business association. That's so important to making a small town work. We're basically neighbors trying to make it happen.

        “One of his strong points is responding to citizens. He does not ignore them or put them off.”

        Freeman Condon, chairman of the board of selectmen of Salisbury, which is the equivalent of a council, said they had initially narrowed a list of 50 applicants to nine who were interviewed, and then a final three.

        “I was impressed by what I perceived to be his sincerity, his interest in the job, his enthusiasm,” said Mr. Condon. “And then some little intangibles. Tim spent a few minutes talking about family and how close he was to his dad. Those things are important to me. They express character.”

        Mr. McInerney came to Mount Healthy from Lexington County, S.C., where he worked with the county government and the state's general assembly. He has a master's degree in public administration.

        “It just has a lot of potential,” Mr. McInerney said of the Salisbury position.

        “It has a lot of opportunities, a lot of challenges.”


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