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Plenty of work for new hire

April 15, 2006|By Alicia Robinson

Costa Mesa's new assistant city manager, Thomas Hatch, takes his post Monday.

The city hired Hatch, 39, from among 30 applicants to fill a position that has been vacant since September 2005. Hatch comes from El Monte, where he has served as deputy city manager for four years, Costa Mesa administrative services director Steve Mandoki said.

Hatch, who has a bachelor's and a master's degree in public administration from Cal State Fullerton, also has worked for the cities of West Covina, South Pasadena and Brea.

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Costa Mesa City Manager Allan Roeder said he chose Hatch for his broad experience in city administration and his dedication to public service.

"He has what I feel is the kind of customer service orientation that we expect in Costa Mesa and I think the public expects," Roeder said.

Also, Roeder added, "He's a real workaholic."

That should help Hatch in his new job, which will involve overseeing the city's day-to-day operations, monitoring capital improvement projects and hearing employee grievances, as well as other duties.

Hatch comes in at a busy time for the city. Officials are dealing with a workload that includes an estimated $30 million in road improvement projects, new zoning rules for the Westside, and questions in the community about the City Council's immigration enforcement plan. Roeder and a few other officials have been dividing up the work that Hatch will assume.

"It'll be nice to kind of move some of this off my desk so I can have a little bit more time to focus on more pressing priority issues for the council and the community," Roeder said.

Mandoki said he was not sure what Hatch's exact salary will be, but the pay range for the position is $121,900 to $163,300.

Hatch replaces former assistant city manager Steve Hayman, who left to become city manager of Rancho Santa Margarita after more than 26 years of working for the city and one year as assistant city manager.

Hatch could not be reached for comment Friday.

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