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Chief Administrative Officer

For City of Burlington
General Purpose

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The Opportunity

The City of Burlington, VT seeks a Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) responsible for the day-to-day management of the City's financial operations, budgeting and payroll, and interdepartmental efforts to assure timely coordination and completion of key City projects. The CAO reports directly to the Mayor and serves as the City's lead financial officer for 18 departments and 600 City staff. 

The CAO assists the Mayor with the strategic and operational planning for City government and, in conjunction with the City's Chief Innovation Officer, monitors City performance through data collection and analysis. In addition, the CAO is responsible for the advancement of special projects at the Mayor's direction, including capital bonding, tax increment financing, and managing interdepartmental initiatives. 

The CAO leads the Clerk/Treasurer office with 22 full-time staff. In addition to finance and administration, the CAO's office is responsible for administering local elections and serving Burlington residents through the City Clerk's office.   

Essential Job Functions


  • Serves as ex officio clerk of the City Council with Mayor presiding, City Council, Board of Civil Authority, Tax Abatement Board, and Local Control Commission.
  • Provides adequate staff resources for the City Council. Under the direction of the President of the City Council, supervises the preparation of the Council agenda and furnishes pertinent supporting documents.
  • Has charge and custody of and maintains official city records and public documents.
  • Manages all of the city's financial operations, including, but not limited to planning, coordination and supervision of the preparation of the budget for submittal to the Mayor, and administers the budget after its adoption.
  • Keeps the Mayor and City Council fully advised of the financial condition of the city and of future needs. Oversees the creation of annual full and detailed statement of the receipts and expenditures for the preceding year.
  • Oversees Annual City audit.
  • Develops purchasing rules and regulations.
  • Monitors and exercises fiscal control over purchases and expenditures for city departments.
  • Supervises the development of the city's capital improvement and capital financing plans involving major improvements to the city's infrastructure system and municipal government facilities.
  • Maintains and enhances the City's revenue base by applying sound financial practices and directing the City's financial resources toward meeting its long-term goals.
  • Administers local elections and serves Burlington residents through the City Clerk's office.
  • Assists with strategic and operational planning for City government, and, in conjunction with the City's Chief Innovation Officer, monitors City performance through data collection and analysis.
  • Serves key role in labor-management relations and is a lead negotiator during collective bargaining.
  • Manages the collection, borrowing and investment of city funds in accordance with investment policies and goals, and local state and federal regulations.
  • Working in cooperation with the Human Resources Director, plans, evaluates and recommends personnel policies, employee benefit plans, employer insurances, property, liability, and other insurance programs.
  • Serves as the City ADA Coordinator for programs, facilities, and activities.
  • Develops with the City Attorney and the Human Resources Director strategies and recommendations regarding bargaining unit contract negotiations.
  • Serves as member of the Board of Finance and on the City Employee Retirement Board.
  • Provides policy advice and overall guidance to Mayor and City Council, and implements policies and programs as adopted by the Mayor and City Council.
  • Attends meetings of the City Council and, as necessary, other boards and commissions to coordinate and satisfy the administrative needs of the City.
  • Performs other administrative and executive functions and responsibilities as delegated by the Mayor.
Jul 12, 2017
Aug 02, 2017
Qualifications/Basic Job Requirements The ideal Chief Administrative Officer for the City of Burlington will have passion to: Provide high-quality, senior executive leadership to encourage innovation and creativity within the City that results in a modern government responsive to residents and businesses. Build and maintain meaningful, collaborative relationships among public, private, academic, non-profit, and community partners, as well as among fellow Department Heads. Work with Mayor and other Department Heads in creating an open, respectful culture that embraces Burlington's cultural diversity, and promotes equity and inclusion in all aspects of city life. Create a culture of excellence where employees have personal ownership for the City's success and are encouraged to take responsibility, innovate fearlessly, and learn from mistakes. Foster dialogue between employees within and across teams to create a workplace environment where every employee feels comfortable sharing ideas and opinions. Champion an understanding that improving employee satisfaction is critical to creating an exceptional experience for residents and businesses. Serve as a "player-manager" with staff, demonstrating competence in financial management and planning, as well as coaching others to achieve the same, especially in the area of municipal finance. Be a role model for public service, continuous learning, and mentoring future leaders. Basic Job Requirements: Under the supervisory control of the Mayor and within the framework of governing state laws and the orders and actions of the city council, duties are performed with wide latitude for independent judgment and action. Work requires the exercise of mature judgment and the application of management techniques and practices in a wide variety of administrative, fiscal and related areas. Works is subject to review for results obtained and conformance with governing laws and established policies through discussion and analysis of recommendations, actions and reports. Thorough knowledge of the theory, principles and practices of public administration required. Thorough knowledge of municipal organization and functions and related federal, state and local laws, rules and regulations and special programs required. Thorough knowledge of accepted professional management practices required. Thorough knowledge in public sector accounting, municipal finance and investment strategies required. Ability to display good knowledge of personnel regulations, policies and practices. Ability to display good knowledge of office methods and practices. Ability to sustain operations and perspective of the government mission. Ability to formulate and implement sound clerical and fiscal policy and procedures and prepare and monitor a balanced budget. Ability to learn the inter-workings and inter-relationships of city operations and functions and the relationships with other forms and levels of government. Ability to represent the mission and vision of the City in actions and deeds. Ability to plan, direct and coordinate the work of subordinates. Ability to carry out effective performance reviews and map career development paths of subordinates. Ability to work effectively across diverse cultures and constituencies. Ability to actively support City diversity, equity, and cultural competency efforts within stated job responsibilities. Ability to gain and retain effective working relationships with city employees elected officials, other public officials and the community at large required. Ability to express ideas effectively, orally and in writing. Ability to operate computers and produce related reports.
Experience and Education A Bachelor's Degree in Accounting, Economics, Public Administration, Business Administration or a related field, or an equivalent combination of education and experience, is required. Five years of related work experience, with supervisory responsibility, is required. Knowledge of fiscal planning, budgeting, and government reporting is required. Background working in a unionized environment, with labor negotiations experience, is preferred. Outstanding communications, interpersonal, organizational, and leadership skills are a must. The ability to solve complex problems and make timely decisions is essential.
Burlington, VT
Regular Full Time Exempt
$117,127.00 - $131,187.00 Annually
Application and Selection Process The City's Department of Human Resources (HR), in conjunction with a Search Committee appointed by the Mayor, is conducting the CAO search process. The Search Committee will review all written materials submitted, scre