The City of Bettendorf will hire its first assistant city administrator.

On Tuesday, the City Council approved the position of assistant city administrator and has extended the opportunity to Jeff Reiter, who currently serves as the city’s economic development director, according to a news release.

Jeff Reiter (photo courtesy of City of Bettendorf)

“We’ve talked about succession planning over the last several years in all of the City’s departments and, in particular, administration,” said Mayor Robert Gallagher. “We believe it is important to have an assistant city administrator who has institutional knowledge to either support a new city administrator one day or fulfill that role themselves.”

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Bettendorf’s population was 33,217 after the 2010 Census. It grew by 17.7% to 39,102 after the 2020 Census and with the recent addition of three new senior housing facilities and continued residential growth, the city’s population is likely more than 40,000 today, according to a news release.

City of Bettendorf Population (Source: U.S. Census Bureau)

2020 – 39,102 = 17.7% Growth from 2010

2010 – 33, 217 = 6% Growth from 2000

2000 – 31,275 = 12% Growth from 1990

1990 – 27,844 = 2% Growth from 1980

1980 – 27,381

This is a logical step in the city’s progression and in every city department, we’ve concentrated on having a clear ‘Number Two’ identified and training in leadership to assume those duties, when need be,” said Decker Ploehn, who has been Bettendorf’s city administrator for 32 years. “While retirement is certainly in my future, I still love doing this work. However, just like the rest of the city, having a plan is very important for our future.”

Reiter will work side by side with Ploehn, and further gain an understanding of the many public obligations the city administrator is responsible for, the release says. He will also continue his duties as economic development director, a position he has held since January 2015. Before that, Reiter was the director of the Family Museum. 

“I was born and raised in Bettendorf and have worked for the city for more than 28 years,” he said. “I have seen many great things happen in Bettendorf over the years and with the continued growth and development, I am excited to continue the positive momentum and trajectory that the city is on. We have a lot to be proud of in Bettendorf and I am very proud of my Bettendorf roots.”