Jobs in mayor’s office funded

City manager Steve Gantt will split the salary of a retiring administrative assistant to pay for two positions in the mayor’s office.

Most likely, those positions will go to Michael Wukela and Sam Johnson, two former campaign staffers for Mayor Steve Benjamin who have been working in Benjamin’s office on a temporary basis since September.

Combined, the pair made $32,000 this year.

Julie Ruff, the longtime assistant to former Mayor Bob Coble, retires Friday. Her annual salary was $82,004. However, a portion of her salary will go toward contributing to the remaining three years of her retirement.

Gantt said he plans to come up with job descriptions for both positions and advertise them internally and externally. But he said he would let Benjamin make the final decision.

“I would say those guys (Wukela and Johnson) have a pretty good shot,” Gantt said. “By law we have to advertise jobs with the city publicly.”