An offer by the City of Clinton for a new Water and Sewer Department manager has been accepted by a Leslie man, with the expectation of his beginning the role Feb. 11.

The officer has been accepted by William Hinchey, currently the manager of the Leslie Water and Sewer Department.

Hinchey said he expected to begin engaging with water department issues right away, including a planned meeting with engineers for projects currently underway this Wednesday, Jan. 30.

“I’m meeting with engineers about our 10 year plan,” Hinchey said.

Hinchey said he met with most of the department employees last Friday, prior to accepting the position as water manager. He had earlier met with the city’s Water Board during the interview process, and has continued to interact with them, he said.

Hinchey said he had been with Leslie Water for six years, working as a plumber prior to that. He listed his qualifications as holding Class III Waste Water and Class IV Water Distribution certifications. Additional certifications including his being a plumbing inspector, he said.

The department has been managed on an interim basis since 2017 by Dickie Hink as the department searched for a manager to replace its earlier manager, Todd Burgess, who resigned the position. Hink announced to Clinton City Council at its December meeting that he would be stepping down from the interim position. Hink remains a member of the Clinton Water Board, instituted last year by City of Clinton Mayor Richard McCormac.

McCormac said the city had been searching for the right manager for the water department “for a long time.” The city, he said, worked with Arkansas Rural Water Association leading up to its making its offer to Hinchey.