South Portland is expecting to hire its new city manager sometime before the end of the summer.

Interim City Manager Jim Gailey said the new city manager could be hired as early as the beginning of August.

Drake, Inglesi and Milardo, a consulting firm in Portland, is conducting the search for South Portland at a cost of about $16,000 said Gailey.

The company is responsible for all facets of the search, which includes advertising the position, reviewing the resumes and narrowing the pool of candidates based on council-decided criteria. Ultimately though, the council will conduct the final interviews and make the decision on which candidate to hire.

To date, the firm’s advertising efforts have yielded between 35 and 40 applicants, said Ernie Lebel, vice president of human resources at the firm.

Lebel said the firm is narrowing the applicant pool based on a lengthy list of criteria, including communication skills, past managerial experience and an ability to work with multiple constituencies. Lebel said it is important that the candidate have worked in a government or private agency of comparable size. The city of South Portland has 14 departments.

Gailey said he is hoping the city can identify their candidate by August and if they accept, have the new city manager start sometime in September.

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