Dawson County commissioners voted last week to extend the application period for internal candidates wanting to be considered for the county manager position.
In a surprise move Thursday, commissioners came out of an executive session during their special called meeting and unanimously approved a motion by Commissioner Gary Pichon to reopen the application period for seven days.
"We want to make sure every one of our very capable employees who want to apply for this position have that opportunity," Pichon said Friday.
Last month, the commission announced that the county's next chief executive officer would be promoted from within and named three internal candidates as finalists to replace County Manager Kevin Tanner.
Tanner, who was elected to the Georgia Legislature in July, is leaving the manager's post at the end of the year. He has held it since 2008.
Director of Public Works and Community Development David Headley, Director of Administration Bob Ivey and Director of Emergency Services Billy Thurmond were previously named as finalists for the position, which was not open to outside candidates.
Pichon said he remains confident the commission will choose Tanner's replacement without expanding the search outside the county.
"The three that applied, they are still in the mix," he said. "There is no indication on our part that that has changed. We just want to make absolutely certain that we've allowed ourselves ... as many people [that] want to take a look at this as we can."