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BLOOMINGTON -- Bill Wasson, who has served as McLean County assistant county administrator for three years, was appointed county administrator by the County Board Tuesday.

He will replace current County Administrator Terry Lindberg, who is retiring May 31. The board also recognized Lindberg for his 12 years of service.

Wasson, who was the county's director of parks and recreation for 22 years, was one of two finalists for the position. The other finalist, former Hamilton County, Ohio, Administrator Patrick J. Thompson, withdrew on Saturday, said County Board member Paul Segobiano, who was chairman of the county's search committee.

"We had the opportunity to continue the search after Mr. Thompson withdrew but we felt we looked everywhere possible and are comfortable with the nomination submitted to the board," Segobiano said.

Wasson stood up to the test of time and experience, he said, and will carry on the tradition of former McLean County Administrator John Zeunik and Lindberg.

"He will keep the county solid, he knows the lay of the land," Segobiano said.

His appointment was unanimous. Members Bob Nuckolls, Don Cavallini and John Butler were absent.

The county received 26 applications for the position, Segobiano said. The list was narrowed to seven. Of those, two accepted positions elsewhere and the county conducted phone interviews with three candidates, he said.

The search committee had interviewed Wasson and planned to interview Thompson but he asked to reschedule saying he was a candidate for several positions.

Wasson was given a five-year contract which begins Monday and expires May 30, 2016. He will earn $118,852 annually, receive a $475 per month automobile allowance and a six-month severance. Lindberg receives $125,141 annually. Zeunik's salary was $139,488 when he retired in 2009.

Wasson said his top priority for the next six months will be working on the county's 2012 budget. He also will begin the search for his replacement as assistant county administrator.

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