BILLINGS- The Billings City Council approved Monday night a new, two-year contract for its top pick for city administrator, Chris Kukulski.
The contract is set with a base salary of $179,000 annually, with the option of a pay raise of up to 5 percent in six months. The deal also includes health, disability and life insurance benefits and a $6,000 annual stipend for a vehicle.
The vote was unanimous. At the meeting, Councilwoman Penny Ronning complimented Mayor Bill Cole, city staff and other council members for their leadership in making the hire.
Kukulski will start Nov. 19.
Billings has been looking for a new city administrator since Tina Volek’s retirement late last year. Bruce McCandless has been the acting city administrator for nearly a year now.
The Council thought it had found her replacement last December, when Great Falls City Administrator Greg Doyon was offered the job. However, Doyon and the city could not reach agreement on a contract, putting the entire process back to square one.
After a new candidate search and subsequent interviews, Kukulski was offered the job on October 10, 2018.
KuKulski has led municipal governments in Kalispell and Bozeman, and is currently vice president for business development at Zoot Enterprises in Bozeman.