Erlanger Turns to Police Department for New City Administrator
Thu, 09/07/2017 - 12:26 RCN Newsdesk
Erlanger has a new city administrator and once again has turned to the police department to fill the role.
Matthew Kremer, a veteran of the city's police department since 2006, will take over for Marc Fields, who is retiring.
"A lot of my coworkers encouraged me to apply for the position," said Kremer, who lives in Ft. Thomas. "When I looked at the requirements for the job, and the skills needed, they were the same as those I acquired as Battalion Executive Officer. I talked to Marc Fields and he agreed. So, I applied, along with about forty-eight other candidates, and they offered me the job."
Kremer is an Army reservist and a 19-year veteran of the military who served two tours in Iraq. He has been in leadership roles in the military for fifteen years, has worked in law enforcement for 11 years, and has been a supervisor for 4 years.
When he joined the military, Kremer said that he liked mentoring leaders.
He said most of the people who work with him know his work ethic, understand that he is a go-getter and when he takes on tasks, he completes them without prompting.
Kremer said he would not jump in and change things as city administrator. He said that good leaders sit back and watch first to see how people do things. He said if people jump in and change things immediately they can mess a lot of things up.
"The city is moving in a good direction," he stated. "I like the economic growth, and would like to see more. With that we can focus attention on making services better for the citizens."
Kremer said the biggest challenge he faces is the budget. The cost of health care is going up, and the city, along with the rest of the region, must pay to upgrade its emergency communication radios. The rising cost of pension contributions from the city could increase by $1 million, he said.
"I am honest and blunt," Kremer said. "I don't sugar-coat things. I don't hold back. I don't mind a heated conversation, but I don't like to fight. I am also research-based, so I don't just go off my opinion. I had a two-hour lunch with the mayor, and I think we know each other a little better now."
One issue facing the city currently is its contract with the City of Crescent Springs to provide police services. Crescent Springs informed Erlanger that it would be seeking requests from other agencies to perform the police functions at the end of the fiscal year. Kremer said that the contract was beneficial to both cities and doesn't think the potential loss of the contract beyond Fiscal Year 2018 would be a big hurt to Erlanger.
Kremer, a sergeant in the police department, is married to his wife, Angie, and they have three children, Matt, Jr., 10, Kaylynn, 8, and Addison, 5.
Tuesday night marked the final meeting for outgoing City Administrator Marc Fields. He joined the city in 1986 as a police officers, was promoted to detective in 1989, and to sergeant in 1992. By 1998 he was lieutenant and in 2001 became assistant chief.
Fields was named city administrator in 2013.
The City of Erlanger officially set the tax rate at 0.330 cents per $100 of assessed value for real property, and 0.577 cents per $100 of assessed value for personal property. This is a full 2-percent down from last year.
Erlanger city council also passed a municipal order which declares 433 and 437 Division Street surplus property, and those properties will be sold by sealed bid.
3409 and 3410 Cowie Avenue will be turned over to Habitat for Humanity. Councilman Kevin Burke told council that the committee recommended that Mayor Tyson Hermes sign the agreement with Habitat for Humanity.
Erlanger Police promoted Jon Sterling to lieutenant, and Paul Ritter took the oath of office as a police officer.
Dave Hahn was honored for his 35 years of service to the city, but he was not present. Lucy Riffle, who has worked at the city in every department except Public Works, was recognized for 40 years of service.
Firefighter/paramedics Daniel Knapke and Jeremiah Johnson were given stork pins for assisting in the birth of a baby girl in late July.
Firefighter EMT Pete Scheben was honored for 35 years of service to the city of Erlanger. He now works full time for the City of Independence. This is the end of an era when the Scheben family had someone on the fire department in Erlanger every year.
H & R Block was honored as the business of the month.
There will be a public hearing on the TIF district for the showcase properties development plan on September 19 at 6:30 p.m.
Heritage day will be at the train depot on September 17, from 1 to 5 p.m.
Written by Patricia A. Scheyer, RCN contributor
Top photo: Matt Kremer (provided)