Search for interim Townsend town administrator takes another step forward

Townsend Memorial Hall. (Jacob Vitali/Lowell Sun)
Townsend Memorial Hall. (Jacob Vitali/Lowell Sun)

TOWNSEND — The search for an interim town administrator is picking up.

At the Board of Selectmen meeting on Friday, July 9, Board Chair Veronica Kell said the hope is to have the position filled later this month or by mid-August at the latest.

Kell stated the board is currently looking to hire a person part-time for the role; however, it could be open to negotiation.

On July 9, Kell said the board had invited seven candidates to apply for the position. However, one candidate the board identified has already accepted another interim offer with a different community. The possibility for additional candidates to apply for the position remains. The application is currently available on the town website and will soon be available on the Massachusetts Municipal Association website.

Because the town had not anticipated hiring an interim town administrator, there were no designated funds for the position in the fiscal year 2022 budget. After seeking guidance from the state Department of Revenue, Kell said the position can be paid using the town administrator line item for the time being but would need to be replenished at a special town meeting in the fall.

Former town administrator James Kreidler remains on the town’s payroll until June 30, 2023, but is paid his salary on a biweekly basis and not a full payout at any specific time.

As previously discussed by the board, a screening committee has been established to help review candidates and provide feedback. The committee will feature all three Board of selectmen members, representatives from each of the five unions representing town employees, and representation on behalf of non-union employees.