What is a Town Manager?

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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Dave on Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:48 pm

Vigs wrote:Open eyes and see whats going on around him or her, act for the people not just a board of 5 or 6. Ask what the people want

I disagree Vigs. We operate in this thing called a representative democracy, or in other words, a Republic. People elect the Selectpeople. That's when "people" have their say. Attempting to cater to the population at large is a recipe for disaster. Nutty groups like the Rumford Distorter crowd receive too much attention when in fact they are merely a scab on the arm of society.

The Town Manager works for the Selectman, not for who can get the most people in the streets with pitchforks, tar, and feathers.


Last edited by Dave on Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:59 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by 911Dispatcher on Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:58 pm

Wow Dave.....a degree and common sense....Dangerous combo
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by KevinNSaisi on Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:03 pm

Dave wrote:
Vigs wrote:Open eyes and see whats going on around him or her, act for the people not just a board of 5 or 6. Ask what the people want

I disagree Vigs. We operate in this thing called a representative democracy, or in other words, a Republic. People elect the Selectpeople. That's when "people" have their say. Attempting to cater to the population at large is a recipe for disaster. Nutty groups like the Rumford Distorter crowd receive too much attention when in fact they are merely a scab on the arm of society.

The Town Manager works for the Selectman, not for who can get the most people in the streets with pitchforks, tar, and feathers.

Nicely stated Dave.
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by KevinNSaisi on Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:04 pm

911Dispatcher wrote:Thanks Kevin for allowing me to use your line (when you are trying to spin what you really meant)....

I was only joking!

I also love how people use politeness as a crutch for dishonesty. Lifes to short for head games and bull----!

Jokes? oh yes, I have heard of them. Smile
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Timeout on Wed Dec 31, 2008 10:29 am

Found this and included the link:

http://www.mtcma.org/about/certification/default.htm

Nature of Work
This is responsible leadership work as administrative head of the Town. The Manager is under the direction of the Board of Selectmen. Performance must be in accordance with the Maine Statutes and local ordinances.

Employee of this class is responsible for the achievement of tangible results through people. Work involves a certain degree of urgency to produce and will require firm dealing with people to achieve results. Work involves planning, budget making, problem solving and organizing with the authority to make decisions as well as delegate to others. The work environment is relatively unpredictable and requires the ability to manage many projects at once. Although governed by policies, the Manager must frequently act without precedent.

Examples of Work (Illustrative Only)

  • Maintains the administrative organization of the Town to ensure efficiency of operation.

    Oversees the accounting of all monies of the Town.

    Makes monthly reports to Board of Selectmen pertaining to the financial status of the Town.

    Annually prepares a proposed budget and work program for the Town.

    Prepares an annual report of the previous year's activities for presentation to the Board of Selectmen and citizens of Wilton.

    Appoints, with Board of Selectmen approval, all department heads and supervises their performance on a day-to-day basis.

    As the personnel officer for the Town, is directly involved in the hiring, evaluating, promoting, and disciplining of employees or establishes procedures for others to follow in such matters.

    Recommends an annual salary schedule for the Town employees for Board of Selectmen consideration.

    Identifies service and policy needs of the town and brings to the attention of the Board of Selectmen with recommendations for action.

    Maintains a sound public relations posture between the Town and its citizens, the press, and other federal, state and local governmental agencies.

    Coordinates departmental activities, and set attainable goals for all municipal departments.

    Act as purchasing agent for all municipal departments, and oversees the bid process on major purchases.

    Maintains contact with public by handling suggestions, complaints and information requests.

    Carries out the directives of the Board of Selectmen.

    Attends meetings of the Board of Selectmen, preparing its agendas, providing supporting documents and information pertinent to agenda items.

    Attends various meetings on behalf of the Town.

    Prepares federal and State grant requests and administers grant programs.

    Enforces municipal and State codes.

    Interacts with numerous municipal committees as needed.

    Performs related work as required.

    Requirements of Work

    Thorough knowledge of municipal management and community problems.

    Thorough understanding of administrative organization, design, and evaluation.

    Thorough knowledge of financial administration and the design of financial accounting and reporting system.

    Thorough knowledge of the theory and practice of public personnel administration.

    Thorough knowledge of municipal government programs and decision-making processes.

    Working knowledge of State and federal programs.

    Ability to communicate effectively orally and in writing.

    Ability to listen to others.

    Possess conflict resolution skills.

    Ability to direct and supervise others and to delegate.

    Ability to organize and use time effectively.

    Ability to give and accept constructive criticism.

    Knowledge of sewer operations and road maintenance.

    Employee must be goal-minded and possess a self-starting drive to get things done, frequently through other people.

    Employee must be able to react quickly to changing situations which may be physically taxing.

    Employee must be positive and direct in striving to achieve results, but must at times be able to motivate others to act through persuasiveness and the generation of enthusiasm.

    Ability to act independently and without precedent in the face of problems.

    Desirable Experience and Training

Graduation from an accredited four-year college or university program in public administration or a related field, and at least five years experience as chief administrative officer in a municipal government; or any equivalent combination of experience and training.


Last edited by Timeout on Wed Dec 31, 2008 1:51 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Vigs on Wed Dec 31, 2008 10:37 am

First I should reply to Kevin, your right they should not ignore his or her supervisors, but I guess what i am saying. He or she needs address issues for the people and not ignore on what is going in the town that he or she serves. Yes there are board meetings in which issue are talked about but why is it that we are talking about the same thing years later? Management, good management makes the world go around and this town has stopped.

I will stop there so someone can tell me wrong or right and maybe we can get this town moving again.


Last edited by Vigs on Wed Dec 31, 2008 10:43 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by KevinNSaisi on Wed Dec 31, 2008 10:40 am

Timeout,
Thank you for posting the Town of Wilton's job description for their manager. It seems to be well thought out and quite thorough.
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by KevinNSaisi on Wed Dec 31, 2008 10:53 am

Vigs wrote:First I should reply to Kevin, your right they should not ignore his or her supervisors, but I guess what i am saying. He or she needs address issues for the people and not ignore on what is going in the town that he or she serves. Yes there are board meetings in which issue are talked about but why is it that we are talking about the same thing years later? Management, good management makes the world go around and this town has stopped.

I will stop there so someone can tell me wrong or right and maybe we can get this own moving again.

A town manager needs to address problems on a daily basis, but there need to be limits to his/her authority. Sending the town crew to fill a pot hole at the intersection of Hancock and Lincoln (you know the one) is well within his/her authority (through the department head), but giving away thousands of dollars out of a slush fund is not. There need to be limits.

I agree that our current board has become quite unproductive. I sent the following to the board before their last meeting:
Below is the agenda with all of the standard business, personnel
issues, permits and licenses removed. When you look at the list, what
forward progress will have been achieved by this meeting? What items
could have been on the agenda that would have made a positive impact
on our town? Are we doing enough?
Have a GREAT Day!
Kevin N. Saisi



NEW BUSINESS
E. CDBG Application for 2009 Housing Assistance Program: Voter Approval to Provide Matching Funds and Scheduling of Public Hearing



In the past I had asked for items to be on the agenda and told that the agenda was too lopng and there waws no room. If the agenda is too long, it is the duty of the selectmen to adjourn the meeting to another day when business can be finished. There is no rule that says they can only meet on the first and third thursdays of the month. Also, their meetings would be shorter if they would follow the rules and do way with their long winded speeches.
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Timeout on Wed Dec 31, 2008 10:56 am

Perhaps Wilton borrowed it as well - that's good. I got it from MTCMA, Maine Municipal Managers' Website. They have lots of good stuff on the site. Check it out.
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by KevinNSaisi on Wed Dec 31, 2008 11:09 am

Well, it says Wilton in the body of the document, so I presumed it originated in Wilton.
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Vigs on Wed Dec 31, 2008 11:16 am

and here is your sign applause
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Timeout on Wed Dec 31, 2008 11:18 am

Thanks Kevin, I edited out specific town reference.
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by KevinNSaisi on Wed Dec 31, 2008 11:20 am

Vigs wrote:and here is your sign applause
bounce Hurray!! I finally earned a sign!!!! bounce

geek jocolor bow
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Vigs on Wed Dec 31, 2008 11:23 am

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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by KevinNSaisi on Wed Dec 31, 2008 11:28 am

Dang!! I thought it was Bill Engval sign. wall duh
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Vigs on Wed Dec 31, 2008 11:35 am

Sorry Kevin here is the real sign.
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by KevinNSaisi on Wed Dec 31, 2008 11:37 am

lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol! lol!
When on Congress Street, watch out for the big dumb animal in the road, and in this case we don't mean a moose!
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Calvin on Wed Dec 31, 2008 12:19 pm

Someone who isn't afraid to deal with the reality that revenues have to rise to meet inflation. And, someone who doesn't perceive Rumford to be a dying mill town that needs to slash its services.

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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Timeout on Wed Dec 31, 2008 2:06 pm

And someone who continues to work on town issues and keeps presenting them to the board. No town manager can or should control the board.

In Rumford's case, control is a particularly sore point. Eldridge was perceived as a controller. Doar, though brilliant and with tremendous potential (yes, my opinion), was perceived as too much of a rookie. The board looked away from every sound recommendation he had. Greaney came in thinking he could walk the middle ground.

When I look at Greaney's accomplishments for the overall town to date, I see that he negotiated the Woodstock oil thing. His biggest mistake to date, and I'm going to say it again and again, is that this is not a corporation, complete with a company code of behavior. It's a municipal government. It's not the same. A manager can't fire the citizens or those who disagree with him. He can't fire the board. He needs to work on that which lies within his duties. I hope he can come around to understanding this a little better. Pretty soon, he will be locking horns with one or another of the selectmen and guess who will go? Not one of the selectmen. And that would be a damned shame.

I would at the very least like to light a fire under Greaney's butt to get him to make it through June until a new board can appoint a new town manager. In reality, I'd like to see Doar come back. He had a lot to offer the town. Until we get past an extremely controlling board, it would be, in my opinion, best to keep Greaney on board. He seems to be taking the beating in stride. I'll give him credit for that.
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Phil Blampied on Wed Dec 31, 2008 6:24 pm

Timeout wrote:When I look at Greaney's accomplishments for the overall town to date, I see that he negotiated the Woodstock oil thing. His biggest mistake to date, and I'm going to say it again and again, is that this is not a corporation, complete with a company code of behavior. It's a municipal government. It's not the same. A manager can't fire the citizens or those who disagree with him. He can't fire the board. He needs to work on that which lies within his duties. I hope he can come around to understanding this a little better. Pretty soon, he will be locking horns with one or another of the selectmen and guess who will go? Not one of the selectmen. And that would be a damned shame.

I would at the very least like to light a fire under Greaney's butt to get him to make it through June until a new board can appoint a new town manager. In reality, I'd like to see Doar come back. He had a lot to offer the town. Until we get past an extremely controlling board, it would be, in my opinion, best to keep Greaney on board. He seems to be taking the beating in stride. I'll give him credit for that.

I read and re-read your analysis and I just don't see how you squeeze it out, except through a cloth woven entirely out of threads of fantasy. Len has accomplished a number of things. He has regularized the town's finances, which, as the recent audit pointed out, had been poorly managed. Len reports regularly to the board on exactly what the financial state of the town is. He does not play funny with swapping money from account to account, as Eldredge did. He activated a million dollar federal earmark for road repair that Doar had let lie fallow, and work will begin on Rt. 108 near the Business Park entrance next Spring. He wisely stopped premature paving of the business park before the lot prep, with skidders and heavy equipment going back and forth, would have torn up the new pavement. He has responded to several constituent complaints that Doar had stonewalled. He has worked with us to get into the 2009 CDBG grant round, which Doar let go by without applying. Doar also managed a previous CDBG grant that Eldredge had won - the facade grant - in a way that caused most of the money to go unused. Len has resolved the snow dump issue, which, under Doar's management, brought state fines down onto the town. He has stabilized the personnel issue at Public Works Department. He has supported Strathglass Park revitalization, which Eldredge let drop and Doar ignored. As far as the selectmen beating up on or dominating Len, that is pure fantasy. The fact is that the selectmen are following his lead. Is it that you don't like the restraints being put on the fire department budget? Perhaps to justify your disagreement on that issue, you have needed to construct a grand theory of his failure, patching it together with your third hand impressions and amateur analysis in place of the facts.

There are problems with his tenure, but they tend to be a problem with the frosting, not the cake, and much of it derives from the fact that the constant squalling and fussing that comes to his door is eating up too much time. Len's underlying work is substantial, competent and effective.

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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Timeout on Wed Dec 31, 2008 6:52 pm

Phil Blampied wrote:
I read and re-read your analysis and I just don't see how you squeeze it out, except through a cloth woven entirely out of threads of fantasy. Beautiful metaphor, Phil.

Len has accomplished a number of things. He has regularized the town's finances, which, as the recent audit pointed out, had been poorly managed. Doar started this process.

Len reports regularly to the board on exactly what the financial state of the town is. He does not play funny with swapping money from account to account, as Eldredge did. Doar didn't either

He activated a million dollar federal earmark for road repair that Doar had let lie fallow, and work will begin on Rt. 108 near the Business Park entrance next Spring. He wisely stopped premature paving of the business park before the lot prep, with skidders and heavy equipment going back and forth, would have torn up the new pavement. Eugene Boivin gets credit for this one.

He has responded to several constituent complaints that Doar had stonewalled. ? Right and used town trucks, etc. to take care of private citizens and businesses...oh well.

He has worked with us to get into the 2009 CDBG grant round, which Doar let go by without applying. Doar also managed a previous CDBG grant that Eldredge had won - the facade grant - in a way that caused most of the money to go unused. Won't comment on this now but promise to get back to you on why 1 plus 1 does not equal 5.

Len has resolved the snow dump issue, which, under Doar's management, brought state fines down onto the town. Illogical. Yes, fines were incurred but that had been the process for years...JSN had a big hand in helping us incur those fines.

He has stabilized the personnel issue at Public Works Department. This has absolutely not happened and has yet to be resolved.

He has supported Strathglass Park revitalization, which Eldredge let drop and Doar ignored. What do you mean? Showed up for a few meetings?

As far as the selectmen beating up on or dominating Len, that is pure fantasy. Right, that's why Arthur Boivin is on camera yelling at Greaney...

The fact is that the selectmen are following his lead. Not hardly, especially with his comment in the SJ today regarding the new year's resolutions they should adopt.

Is it that you don't like the restraints being put on the fire department budget? Perhaps to justify your disagreement on that issue, you have needed to construct a grand theory of his failure, patching it together with your third hand impressions and amateur analysis in place of the facts. Perhaps your assumption of my thoughts around the fire department lead you to assign me thoughts that don't really belong to me.

There are problems with his tenure, but they tend to be a problem with the frosting, not the cake, and much of it derives from the fact that the constant squalling and fussing that comes to his door is eating up too much time. Len's underlying work is substantial, competent and effective.
If you say so. Hey, where were you when the Sun Journal asked what his accomplishments were for 2008? He didn't list any.
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by C on Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:35 pm

I think we need a qualified TM who can stand on his/her own two feet. We don't need another "yes-man" who will bow to the whims of the selectboard when it doesn't benefit our town. We need a TM that is not afraid to rock the boat when he/she sees things that aren't right. We need a TM who will oversee the committees (such as the Finance Committee) and insure that facts and figures are presented accurately and fairly. We need a TM that believes in and supports our town employees, especially our FD and PD. We need a TM with the proper educational and moral foundation to do what is right for our community. Actually, I think we need a Mayor.
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by Timeout on Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:41 pm

quote from Phil "...much of it [problem] derives from the fact that the constant squalling and fussing that comes to his door is eating up too much time."

Phil, I agree 100%. Someone should tell those selectmen to stop sitting in his office all day. Also he should inform them that the requests and complaints of the citizens they represent need to be put in writing and addressed properly through the channels, not at selectman whim. God, think of how much time that might save him...geeez!
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Re: What is a Town Manager?

Post by KevinNSaisi on Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:44 pm

Interesting, you guys accuse the selectmen of micro-managing the departments, and here you are micro-managing the town manager.
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