Jefferson City Council fires city administrator

Nathan Nickolaus

The Jefferson City Council fired the city's administrator Nathan Nickolaus after a vote Monday night.

Nickolaus says Mayor Struemph did not give him a reason before the council voted to terminate him. But, he says, the two have had a personality conflict.

"I think the Mayor and I have had our conflicts over time, but I thought things had been improving recently, and I was lookign forward to getting some good work done."

A motion to terminate was requested by Mayor Eric Struemph and the motion passed by a vote of 8-2.

The two had not seen eye to eye on the idea of building a conference center somewhere in Jefferson City, which dominated the council's attention Monday night. Nickolaus also said he and the mayor have had other disagreements in the past, although he did not elaborate.

"I believe the Council made the right decision to move our city forward," said Struemph.

Nickolaus says, replacing him will be difficult.

"Well, I think it's going to make it difficult to get another city administrator, when you've had two city administrators discharged by the same administration... it's going to be difficult I think to get a third one to come in," Nickolaus said.

Nickolaus also said that the job of city administrator isn't easy, and that his replacement will have to come prepared.

"It's though being city administrator because you've got 11 bosses, then you've got 43,000 constituents that you have to keep happy."

According to Struemph, the council will immediately begin a nationwide search for a new city administrator. In the meantime, City Attorney Drew Hilpert has been appointed interim city administrator until the city finds a replacement.

Nickolaus says, he plans to return to private practice as an attorney and has no plans to work for the city again.