- Last Updated on 08:40 PM 06/25/12
- BY Paula I. Bryant
James. M. Halasz is Halifax County’s new administrator following a unanimous 7-0 vote by the Halifax County Board of Supervisors during their Monday night meeting.
Halasz, a 20-year veteran of local government administration, will be paid an annual base salary of $140,000 and provided health insurance benefits, VRS benefits, 30 days annual leave (vacation), 30 days sick leave, an automobile for county business use only and a car allowance of $600 monthly to cover travel within the county, according to his employment contract.
The newly hired county administrator, who beat out 33 other applicants for the position, will begin work July 9.
For the past 12 years, Halasz has worked in Staunton as an assistant and deputy city manager, and he has over 10 years of experience as manager and assistant manager in the communities of Milford, Cadillac and Paw Paw Michigan.
According to Supervisor Chairman Tom West, he has significant concentrations of experience in community and economic development, grant writing and administration, budgeting and financial management and infrastructure replacement and construction funding and management.
“He is a strong proponent of local government and developing local solutions to community issues and challenges,” West told fellow board members and those attending Monday night’s supervisor meeting.
Halasz grew up in rural Lenawee County, Michigan and graduated from Siena Heights University and has a master’s in public administration from Michigan State University.
He also has attended and received a certificate from the Senior Executive Institute at the University of Virginia.
He is a member of the Virginia Local Government Management Association, the International City/County Management Association and is currently president of the Staunton-Augusta County Rotary Club.
He is married to his wife of 22 years, Deborah, and they have a daughter and son. Jessica is a junior at Virginia Commonwealth University, and James will be entering his junior year at Halifax County High School.
The family also owns a black lab – Smith, and a golden retriever - Wesson.
The new county administrator said he and his family enjoy canoeing, hunting, camping and gardening.
He and his wife can their own jams and jellies pickles, salsa, beans, beets and other fruits and vegetables.
After being introduced as the new county administrator Monday evening, Halasz said he is looking forward to getting to know board members and the citizens of Halifax County and their concerns and issues and how he can fit in with the existing staff and board.
“I want to become a solution to the issues we face in the existing economy,” he said.
While in Staunton, Halasz said he helped make “local strides there to help build the community and local quality of life to build jobs and opportunities.”
He said he hopes to bring that focus to Halifax County where he can assist in that regard here as well.
“I am also looking forward to getting to know the friendly people who I have already met living here and settling in to create a place called home for myself and family,” he added.