Reception to Meet the Finalists for Belgrade City Manager

Reception to Meet the Finalists for Belgrade City Manager

There will be a Reception at the Holiday Inn Express, 309 West Madison in Belgrade on December 3, 2013 from 7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. to meet the City Manager candidates. The Belgrade City Council received 49 applications. After review the following candidates have been invited to Belgrade for interviews.

The Candidates:

Ted Barkley has served as the City Manager of Ellensburg, Washington, for the past 13 years. Before taking that position on 2000, he was the City Manager for Montrose, California, for 8 years. He also held the position of Assistant City Manager for Garden City, Kansas, from 1987-1992. Mr. Barkley has a master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Kansas and a bachelor’s degree in Liberal Arts from Colorado College.

Ben Bifoss most recently served as City Manager of Traverse City, Michigan, for almost 5 years. Prior to that, he worked as Project Manager for Abonmarche Consultants and was the General Manager for West Michigan Dock & Market Corporation. Mr. Bifoss served as City Manager for Manistee, Michigan, from 1987-2001, and he also held positions of City/County Manager for Anaconda-Deer Lodge County, Montana, City Manager for Montevideo, Minnesota, and Assistant City Manager for Grand Haven, Michigan. He has a master’s degree in Public Administration and a bachelor’s degree in Political Science both from Central Michigan University.

Jack Cameron has been the Administrator for the Village of Evendale, Ohio, since 2004. Prior to that he served the City of Norwood, Ohio, for seven years, first as Chief Project Coordinator and then Safety-Service Director. Mr. Cameron was also an engineer at a private firm for several years earlier in his career. He has a Bachelor of Civil Engineering degree from the University of Dayton, Ohio, and a MBA from Xavier University, Cincinnati, Ohio.

The Belgrade City Council invites the public to attend the Reception on December 3, 2013.


Madison Arm Search


   On November 19, 2013, at approximately 7:00 PM, a 27 year-old West Yellowstone resident called 911 reporting that he was lost.  The male was only able to call 911 on his cell phone and the phone’s battery was nearly dead so dispatch could not get an accurate location on his phone.  The male stated that he had been dropped off at Highway 20 and Madison Arm Road at approximately 1:30 PM by his girlfriend.  He told dispatch that he had been hunting and tracking game animals and had become lost and didn’t know which direction to go to get out of the woods.  He said that he was on a heavily used roadway and he thought that he was near the lake.  He was advised to stay where he was.  The male’s girlfriend was out in her vehicle looking for him, but they could not find each other.  The girlfriend was contacted and advised to return to her residence.  The hunter had no provisions with him, (food, water, light, fire starter) but was wearing warm “hunting” clothing appropriate for the time of year.

   The Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue was activated and responded along with a Gallatin County Deputy Sheriff.  A Montana Wildlife Fish and Parks Game Warden and a Yellowstone National Park Ranger also assisted in the search.  Members searched the area known as the “North Flats”, which is an area between Hwy 191 and Hwy 20 and Madison Arm Road.  Members searched by vehicle and ATV.   

   At approximately 8:50 PM members of the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue located the lost hunter near the West Yellowstone Airport on a Forest Service road.  The hunter was uninjured and required no medical treatment.  The male was transported back to West Yellowstone and returned home.

   The Gallatin County Sheriff would like to remind everyone to always plan and prepare to spend at least one night in the woods when enjoying the outdoors.  Even if you only plan on being gone for a few hours, you never know when it will turn into an extended stay.

Welfare Check – Deceased Male Found


  On November 12, 2013, The Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office received a call from an out of state family member regarding a welfare check on their father.  Family members had not heard from him in several days and were beginning to worry.  

  Deputies responded to a home in Big Sky and located a deceased male.  The individual was identified as 80 year-old Herman Robert Schatz of Big Sky. 

  Mr. Schatz’s death is being investigated by the Coroner division of Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office.

Hazardous Fuels Reduction on Mount Ellis

PATCH4Over the past several days residents have seen smoke and fire on the slopes of Mt. Ellis, East of Bozeman, above Bear Canyon. These fires are part of a hazardous fuels reduction program undertaken by the Department of Natural Resources and Conservation and are expected to be completed in a few days.
Fort Ellis Fire Chief Mike Cech explains: “We welcome the efforts of the DNRC to reduce the hazard of pine beetle killed trees near the Fort Ellis Fire Service Area. As we have seen in other parts of the state, fires burning in beetle killed forests have been rampant. Although it looks like there are a lot of fires on the slopes of Mt. Ellis, they are surrounded by cleared and snow covered ground. The Fort Ellis Fire Department is monitoring the situation and we assure residents there is no cause for concern.”

Not for publication: For more information, contact Chief Mike Cech, 581-2816 or Asst Chief Fred Cady 580-2582.

Father and Son Assisted Out of Big Sky Back Country


(Gallatin County, Mont.) On Monday 11/04/13, at approximately 10:20 a.m., Gallatin County Dispatch received a call from a man whose hunting party was stranded on Buck Ridge south of Big Sky.

The caller stated he had his twelve year old son with him and was having mechanical problems with his snowmobile.  He attempted to get out but became disoriented due to snowfall and poor visibility.

A Deputy Sheriff Coordinator and Sheriff’s Search and Rescue at Big Sky were dispatched to the scene.  Two search and rescue members on snowmobile and a specialized tracked vehicle located the stranded party.  Rescuers were able to assist the party out of the backcountry and get them back to their vehicle.

It was found the parties had gotten a bit disoriented due to the weather and were not familiar with the area.

It is a good reminder to always know your limits while recreating in the backcountry, especially when accompanied by children.    The party was able to give their exact location, had good winter clothing, a cell phone to report their mishap and also stayed together as a group.  This behavior insured a quick and successful mission by our search and rescue team.#####