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BLOOMFIELD — Bloomfield City Council approved Eric Strahl as the new city manager during its meeting Monday evening.

Council members unanimously approved Strahl's appointment by Mayor Scott Eckstein, as well as the terms of the new city manager's contract.

Before councilors approved the city manager, Eckstein reminded them that Strahl was the top choice of each of the three panels that interviewed the three job candidates in late June.

Councilor Matt Pennington said the interview process — a system that involves three panels comprised of elected officials, department heads and community leaders — has been useful in the past.

"It's nice to see everyone on the same page and everyone come up with the same solution and the same decision," Pennington said.

Strahl, the former city manager of Oil City, Penn., is scheduled to begin in Bloomfield on Aug. 17.

His one-year contract includes a salary of $100,000 with benefits, including a monthly vehicle allowance of $850 and a one-time payment of $7,500 for moving expenses, according to the contract paperwork.

Councilor DeLaws Lindsay said he believes Strahl has a lot to offer the city and his experience will be an asset.

"I'm excited to get to work with him," Lindsay said. "I believe he's going to carry the vision of the city."

Bloomfield's former city manager, David Fuqua, left in May to become the city manager of Altus, Okla.

Donica Sharpe has been serving as interim city manager since Fuqua's departure. She has been the city's planning and zoning director for the last three years.

Joshua Kellogg covers education for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4627 and jkellogg@daily-times.com. Follow him @jkelloggdt on Twitter.

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