LOS ANGELES (CBS) — A nationwide search to fill the top spot in one of the nation’s most notorious cities was underway on Monday.

Candidates hoping to become the new city manager of Bell were asked to submit their applications by the close of business in a nationwide search being lead by law firm Peckham & McKenney.

The city has not had a full-time manager since Robert Rizzo stepped down in 2010 over charges of draining Bell’s treasury and awarding excessive salaries to himself and other city officials.

Partner Bobbi Peckham told KNX 1070 the firm is sensitive to the demands of the position in the wake of the financial scandal that brought national shame to the city with a population of 35,477 people.

“We’re doing everything we can to alleviate those concerns, and to help folks understand that the city is definitely on the right track, that it’s in a process of renewal, and that they have an excellent council as well as interim management team there to really put things in place, to turn things around,” said Peckham.

As many as 35 applications are currently under review, according to Peckham, who expects to narrow the field down to about a dozen candidates.

The job listing describes the position as “an opportunity to provide extraordinary public service to a community that has turned the corner” that calls for duties that include crafting a “professional annual budget, classification and compensation study, job descriptions, and other internal infrastructure improvements”.

Peckham expects a final decision to be made sometime in March.


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