New Albany's community development department recently gained two new employees, one of whom was hired for a modified position to streamline the process of development.

New Albany's community development department recently gained two new employees, one of whom was hired for a modified position to streamline the process of development.

Adrienne Joly, a planning intern for the city in 2009 and 2010, was hired as the new project manager for the department.

A new planner, Stephen Mayer, was hired to replace Michelle Murphy, who resigned in March.

"We've spent the last year looking at ways to improve our customer service and efficiencies," said Debra Mecozzi, deputy city administrator.

Mecozzi said the city began studying positions after an engineering coordinator resigned last summer. The city did not fill the position and later decided to create a project manager position instead.

The new project manager position was assigned to the community development department instead of the public services department, to which the engineering coordinator reported.

As project manager, Joly will work with private developments, acting as an intermediary for the developer and city officials on zoning, planning and engineering issues.

"They (the developers) will not have to report to different people in different departments," Mecozzi said.

Mecozzi said three part-time positions were eliminated as part of the reorganization. The city has eliminated one part-time position in public services, a clerical position and a part-time planning intern.

Joly has a bachelor's degree in political science from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and a master's degree in city and regional planning from The Ohio State University.

She will earn $59,772.54 per year in salary and $23,028.19 in benefits, according to city officials.

Joly said she worked in Las Vegas in the early 2000s, doing "a large volume of work in a really fast-paced environment." Her latest job was with the Columbus planning division, where she administered capital projects through the Ohio Cultural Facilities Commission.

"My goal for (the position) is to try to improve customer aspects and integrate engineering functions into community development so there will be one stop for businesses building and locating here," she said.

Joly said she was interested in coming back to New Albany because she believes in the city's approach to development and the city has an energy and excitement.

Joly's first day was April 10.

Like Joly, Mayer also interned at New Albany; he interned for the city from 2008 to 2010.

He has a bachelor's degree in natural resources management from the University of Delaware and a master's in city and regional planning from Ohio State.

Mayer's total compensation will be $59,837.63: $51,149.01 in salary and $9,688.62 in benefits.

He worked as a planner for Baton Rouge, La., after leaving Columbus in 2010 and said he was happy to come back to New Albany.

He said he hopes to continue the "great standards" set by the planners before him.

Mayer's first day was April 16.