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City's public works director moving on down the road
Katy Allen, who took over public works in late December, announced last week that she will leaving at the end of May to become the City Administrator for Liberty Lake.
Allen has lived in the Eastern Washington town for 30 years with her husband, Randy, who works as a school principal there. Her longtime friend Steve Peterson was recently elected mayor and asked her to throw her name in the ring for a newly created city manager position. Allen said she wasn't aware of the likelihood of a job closer to home when she took over public works in Bremerton.
Allen said the decision to leave Bremerton after just six short months was "more of personal decision, in many ways, than it was a professional one."
At one point in her career, Allen spent several years commuting to San Jose, California, and the new job will allow her to finally have a more normal commute.
In her brief tenure with the city, Allen highlighted her ongoing efforts to create a new business plan for the department and a reorganization she says better serves citizens and customers, as her proudest accomplishments.
Bremerton Mayor Patty Lent said that Allen's early departure is bitter sweet.
"In her all too brief leadership as Public Works Director for the City of Bremerton Katy has re-structured several areas of the department," Lent said. "She has opened up the work area at the Oyster Bay facility, dispersed the work responsibilities after three retirements and has upgraded utility billing by instilling a stronger customer service base separate from accounting duties."
Lent also credited Allen with getting a utility rate study scoped out and sent to bid. That study should be completed and presented to Council by October to be included in the 2013 budget. Lent also appointed Allen to work with Lorax, LLC to complete the streetscape, utility undergrounding and sidewalk improvements on Fourth Street.
Allen said that the city hopes to have her replacement hired by the time she leaves.