Fourteen people applied for the Baker City manager job, and a selection committee comprising three city councilors who met Thursday night pared the list of candidates to five.
Fred Warner Jr., who has been city manager since May 2016, plans to retire at the end of the year.
The seven-member City Council will choose the new manager.
Mayor Loran Joseph said the selection committee, which consists of himself and councilors Lynette Perry and Jason Spriet, will propose to the City Council, when it meets Tuesday, Sept. 22, that the full City Council interview the five candidates via Zoom.
The Council would then trim the roster to two or three finalists whom the city would invite to Baker City for interviews and potentially a meet-and-greet with residents, contingent on complying with COVID-19 precautions, Joseph said.
The city did not release the names of the five candidates.
According to the Oregon Attorney General’s Public Records manual, public agencies can — but are not legally required to — withhold the names of applicants because releasing the names could jeopardize the applicants’ current job.
In 2016 the city named the four finalists for the city manager’s job. The Council ended up hiring Warner, who was the only local resident among the finalists.
The city received applications from people in Oregon, Washington, California and Wyoming, as well as more distant states including North Carolina and Missouri.
“We were able to get the word out it looks like all over the country, so that was great,” Joseph said. “I think it just shows that Baker City is a popular place to live and people want to move here.”