The mood in City Hall was festive Wednesday, as dozens of business owners, public servants and residents met the city's top official.
And the review of Los Banos and its residents were glowing from Steve Carrigan for his first day in town.
"How long does it take to feel at home? I know that I feel that already," he said. "So, I know you got a good thing going here."
An hour before the City Council meeting, Steve Carrigan mingled with residents during a meet and greet planned by city staff. Locals sampled finger foods and smiled as they met the man who will officially take the position Monday.
"I'm impressed by the warm reception tonight," Carrigan, 50, said. "I had a chance to meet a number of folks in the community and they just really made me feel at home."
City Council unanimously voted for Carrigan as city manager on April 3. Since November, Police Chief Gary Brizzee has served as acting city manager.
Carrigan said he received three text messages the night of the vote, two of which were from city staff and were regarding regular administrative issues for new employees.
"The third one is the one that really kind of took my breath away," he said, adding it was from former City Manager Steve Rath.
"He welcomed me and congratulated me," he said. "Not only did I think that was very, very professional. On a personal note, I thought it was super cool."
City Council agreed to a three-year contract of $156,000 a year, which is $13,000 per month. Also in the employment agreement are benefits, a moving reimbursement not to exceed $5,000, and a housing allowance of $1,250 a month for a maximum of six months.
Carrigan comes to Los Banos after a 16-month stint as the assistant city manager of Sanger, and eight years as economic development director in Stockton. He has more than 20 years of experience in the public sector.
Each member of City Council congratulated Carrigan during closing statements.
"I do very much look forward to working with you," said Councilman Scott Silveira, "as well as the rest of the council and the staff members."
Enterprise reporter Thaddeus Miller can be reached at (209) 388-6562 or by email at tmiller@losbanos
Enterprise reporter Thaddeus Miller can be reached at (209) 388-6562 or by email at tmiller@losbanos enterprise.com.