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Billings’ pick for city administrator hopes to sign contract next week

Posted: 8:11 PM, Oct 11, 2018
Updated: 2019-07-17 14:51:26-04

BILLINGS – Now that Billings has its top choice for city administrator, the next step is to reach a contract deal.

And Chris Kukulski, a former Bozeman city manager, said Thursday he hopes to sign something next week.

“Really exciting. I’ve been fortunate – been in Montana working in local government for the better part of the last 20 years and getting to work for Zoot Enterprises this past year in Bozeman. (Zoot) actually had me spending a fair amount of time working in Billings and it’s just been really exciting. So I am looking forward to continuing that work and working closer with the people here in Billings,”  said Kukulski, the Council’s unanimous choice Wednesday night.

Kukulski says one of his top priorities will be to advance the One Big Sky project being proposed for downtown Billings.

Kukulski was one of four finalists under consideration for the city of Billings’ top executive spot, and the only Montanan. He’s currently an executive vice president for business development at Zoot, a Bozeman-based tech firm.

Kukulski served 13 years as city administrator in Bozeman from 2004 to 2017. He held a similar post before that for the city of Kalispell.

If he signs, Kukulski would replace Bruce McCandless, the current interim city manager.

The Billings City Council had previously reached an agreement with another candidate, Great Falls City Manager Greg Doyon, but the two sides failed to reach a deal on compensation and incentives.