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City Manager Out, Finance Director In

The City of San Luis Obispo just bumped up their interim finance director of a year to a permanent position reporting to the City Manager, but that top job won’t be Katie Lichtig’s much longer.

Xenia Bradford was appointed to the permanent finance director position announced July 26 with a salary of $138,502 a year to manage a department-operating budget of $2.2 million.

She officially took over just after the City Council approved a new, balanced, 2-year budget that totals $142 million in 2017/18 and increasing to $203 million in 2018/19.

The general fund, which pays for most City services, is set at $99.48 million in 2017/18 and $101.43 million in 2018/19.

Lichtig however has announced that she’ll be leaving the City of SLO effective Sept. 28 to begin a new role as Chief Operating Officer/Assistant City Manager in Santa Monica.

The annual budget there is $775 million with 2,300 full time staff.

Litchtig’s annual salary as City Manager is currently $230,464 with a benefits package putting real world pay as $321,201 including a $5,400 car and clothing allowance. The job listing for her new Santa Monica position ranges from $234,900 to $290,00 base salary.

At the news SLO Mayor Heidi Harmon issued a statement: “Katie has made countless contributions to our city during her time as our City Manager. I know I speak for the other City Council members, past and present, when I say that we appreciate all of Katie’s talents and accomplishments during her time as City Manager. I particularly appreciate how essential your expertise has been during a time of transition with a majority new council. She has been a tireless advocate for the City, a strong leader of our staff. She also volunteers in many organizations in our community. We are disappointed to see her make this transition but we understand her desire to contribute to Santa Monica and return to the place she started her career in city management. The Council and Katie are committed to ensuring the transition of leadership is as smooth as possible and we have a strong team of dedicated staff so the City can continue to make progress on the many high priorities envisioned by the City Council.”

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