Jon Ellestad is filling in as Buchanan’s interim town manager, according to Vice-Mayor James Manspile.

Manspile said Town Council agreed last week to hire Ellestad part-time on a temporary basis until council can find a full-time town manager.

Council will conduct interviews to fill the vacant mayor’s seat this Friday, Jan. 5 in a called meeting at Town Hall at 7 p.m.

Manspile said council will go into executive session to interview candidates for the position that was vacated December 1 when Larry Hall resigned.

Council has 60 days from the December 1 date to fill the mayor’s seat or, under state law, the circuit court will make an appointment.

Manspile had hoped to have a candidate ready to take the seat by council’s January 8 regular meting.

Ellestad has 40 years of experience in municipal government, including nearly 24 years as Lexington city manager. He retired from that job in July 2014 and lives in Lexington.

Manspile said Ellestad met and worked with outgoing Town Manager Mary Zirkle on her last day December 29. He will be in the town office some this week. He has some business to wrap up before assuming the part-time Buchanan job the full 30 to 32 hours a week he’s agreed to work

Manspile said council will announce his salary once a letter of understanding is finalized. Ellestad will not receive any benefits since he will be part-time, Manspile said.