SOUTH PORTLAND — The City Council plans to hire Eaton Peabody to assist in its search for a new city manager and hire one of the firm’s consultants, former Brunswick Town Manager Don Gerrish, to serve as interim city manager.

Councilors said during a workshop Monday that Eaton Peabody would charge about $10,000 to help find a replacement for City Manager Jim Gailey. The council reached a consensus after discussing various options with Don Brewer, the city’s human resources director.

Gailey, who has worked for the city for decades and served as city manager since 2007, announced his resignation June 8 to become assistant manager of Cumberland County. His departure is expected by the end of July.

Eaton Peabody has several offices across Maine and practices in a variety of areas, including municipal law and finance, according to the firm’s website.

Gerrish joined Eaton Peabody as a municipal consultant in 2009 after retiring as Brunswick’s town manager, a post he held for nearly 20 years. He has 37 years of municipal management experience, including posts in Gorham, Auburn and Rockland.

City officials said Gerrish’s usual daily rate is $650, but they hope to negotiate a reduced rate since Gerrish likely would work three days a week and fill the post for several months.

Mayor Tom Blake had said previously that Josh Reny, assistant city manager and economic development director, might be appointed interim city manager during the search.

Reny, who is in his mid-30s, came to South Portland in September from Fairfield, where he was town manager for five years and economic and community development director before that.

Several councilors at Monday’s workshop praised Reny’s performance but said Gerrish’s lengthy experience would be beneficial. Some councilors and others have noted that the city manager’s job has grown increasingly difficult in recent months because of conflicts on the council and in the community, especially over petroleum-based businesses.