Mayor pulls double duty for a day
Karla Stephans complimented Mayor Dave Anderson's job performance Monday morning.
"He did a good job," she said. "He knew exactly what to do."
Stephans wasn't referring to Anderson's attempt to solve the city's water problems, improve streets or oversee the 2002 budget. She complimented Anderson on his efficiency in collecting her city utility payment.
The mayor took a four-hour shift Monday behind the counter in the city clerk's office a job that had him collecting utility payments, entering payments into the computer and answering the phone.
That last job requirement kept him in touch with his constituency, Anderson said.
"We produced a record 885,000 gallons of water yesterday (Sunday)," he said. "When we produce record numbers, it turns brown. People have called and let me know about that."
But, the mayor said he could tell callers that the city was working on a solution to the problem. Work began Monday on a waterline that will connect the water treatment plant at the Sunflower Army Ammunition Plant to the city's distribution system.
Anderson optimistically brought a legal tablet on which he attempted to write a proposal for his contractor company, CPM Inc.
"I've got to pay the bills," he said. "I haven't gotten much done. This is much harder than it looks."
As he performed his tasks, the rookie could depend on the expertise of veteran Ann Davis, who watched his struggles from her nearby desk.
"He's pretty good for a beginner," Davis said of Anderson. "It's okay to go slow as long as you do it right."
Anderson found entering data into the computer particularly slow going, and wondered if his efforts were worthwhile. But, he said the experience gave him ideas about improving the city's software program to make it more efficient.
Despite Anderson's self-criticism, City Clerk Lana McPherson said he passed one important test.
"He's very polite, friendly and courteous, which is what we want," she said.