The City of Nogales is sweetening its offer as it continues to search for a new city attorney.

The mayor and council on Wednesday approved a number of amendments to the existing job posting and recruitment process after a search launched in March attracted only two applicants, one of whom has already withdrawn.

The changes include increasing the salary range listed in the job posting from $86,900-$121,743 to $130,000-$150,000, commensurate with experience.

The new salary range represents a marked increase from the $112,000 paid to previous City Attorney Luis Parra, as well as the $123,000 earned by Jose Luis Machado prior to his termination effective in early 2017.

The updated job posting will also offer a relocation package for out-of-town candidates and remove previous language stating that no severance pay would be offered.

In addition, the mayor and council instructed the Human Resources Department to advertise the opening for 30 days in locations “that will reach a wide range of qualified individuals.”

They also voted to eliminate a screening committee from the hiring process. Instead, applicants will be screened by current legal staff.

The position has been vacant since Parra’s one-year contract expired on April 14. Deputy City Attorney Michael Massee has been serving as the interim city attorney.

The city has not responded to a request for the names of the applicants, but Mayor Arturo Garino said during Wednesday’s meeting that two people had applied, and that one of the two had subsequently withdrawn their application.

The We Love Nogales Facebook page first reported last month that Parra applied for the job, but then withdrew his application in a letter to the city dated May 7.

As part of the adjustments made Wednesday, the mayor and council decided that anyone who had previously applied for the job did not need to re-apply to still be considered. However, anyone who applied and withdrew would have to apply again.

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