Midway through revisions to the comprehensive plan and on the verge of a land-use code overhaul, La Plata County Planning Director Damian Peduto could be moving on to a lead planning position in Bozeman, Montana.
Peduto is among three finalists for the position of Bozeman community development director, a vacancy the city wants to fill within weeks.
“I haven’t been searching for jobs; it’s just an opportunity that presented itself uniquely for me and my family,” Peduto said. “I’m just interested to see what it could potentially yield.”
He said he has not decided if he will take the job if offered.
Peduto took his current position in 2012, replacing Erick Aune, who resigned in 2011 a day after the La Plata County Planning Commission nixed two years of work and $700,000 spent on a comprehensive plan update.
Since then, the planning department has worked with the county planning and governing boards as comprehensive plan revision efforts were revived. Staff members are expected to wrap up the revision, which has been handled incrementally by topic, next year.
A land-use code rewrite is also due to start this fall.
“We would certainly be sad to see him go if he chose to leave, but we would be able to carry on with the comp plan, and I’m confident about the code rewrite project,” County Manager Joe Kerby said. “We are toward the end of the comp plan revision and expect to wrap it up by early 2017. We’ve been working on staffing models for supporting the land-use code project, and I’m confident we’d move that forward.”
According to a Bozeman city staff member, the salary range for the opening is $91,261 to $100,287. Peduto’s current salary is $98,771.
Before he came to Colorado, Peduto spent more than 17 years working in municipal and county planning in Florida, most recently as director of planning and zoning for the town of Juno Beach.
If Peduto is offered the position and accepts, he’ll oversee a department of about 24 and inherit some familiar issues. The Bozeman Daily Chronicle reported in May that the city of 45,000 is in the midst of rewriting its own development code, preparing to craft a strategic plan and seeing a “record” influx of development applications.
Bozeman’s former planning director, Wendy Thomas, ended a three-year tenure at the end of July.