John Wooner

John Wooner.

With its city manager still missing amid mysterious circumstances, the McFarland City Council voted unanimously in closed session Wednesday to appoint a new interim city manager and assistant city manager.

The city announced at 7:39 p.m. it had selected David Tooley, an administrator with 20 years of experience in municipal government, to become city manager effective Monday.

Tooley will replace interim city manager Janet Davis, McFarland's police chief. She had been appointed city manager May 23, nine days after City Manager John Wooner went missing after visiting a relative's gravesite at Hillcrest Cemetery in Bakersfield.

The council also voted Wednesday to appoint Davis interim assistant city manager. She will continue to serve as McFarland's police chief.

Mayor Manuel Cantu and the council expressed concern for Wooner's welfare in the news release.

"This is an important business decision for the city so that the City Council and our city employees may continue the business of the city in an orderly manner," Cantu stated.

Cantu added he has confidence that Tooley, who has served in administrator positions in five cities in two states, will do an "excellent job."

"I am confident that Mr. Tooley will do an excellent job," he stated. "The council is impressed with Mr. Tooley's background, financial expertise and high ethical standards. He is a skilled and respected city administrator who will bring tremendous value and innovation to the City of McFarland."

Wooner was driving a silver Dodge Durango owned by the city of McFarland when he left the cemetery on the evening of May 14.

Anyone with information about Wooner's disappearance is asked to call Bakersfield police Detective Keith Cason at 326-3868 or the department at 327-7111.

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