A timeline is under development by the board of selectmen for the town’s search for a new town administrator.
On TuesdayJune 4, the board discussed the tentative timeline, put forward by departing town administrator Thomas M. Guerino.
Selectmen called on Mr. Guerino to tighten up parts of the timeline. One also questioned part of the role assigned to a screening committee in the process.
The schedule proposed by Mr. Guerino begins with selection of a consultant to assist the town in its search and ends with the hiring of the new administrator. The entire process is expected to take three months, from the beginning of July through the end of September.
As stipulated in the Request for Proposals, the consultant will work with the Bourne Board of Selectmen and other town officials “in the recruitment and selection of a well-qualified candidate for the position of town Administrator for the Town of Bourne.”
Proposals from prospective consultants will be accepted up to, and not after, Monday, July 1, at 4:30 PM. The board of selectmen will conduct interviews with prospective consultant candidates on Tuesday, July 9, and select the successful candidate the next day, Wednesday, July 10.
Throughout the rest of July, the consultant will gather information from meetings with the selectmen, senior staff and division managers, and other town hall staff. The consultant also will hold public listening sessions, and meet with a Town Administrator Screening Committee, ahead of the recruitment process.
The consultant will begin recruitment Wednesday, July 31. The screening committee will hold candidate interviews the week of Labor Day, Monday, September 2. The consultant is to provide the selectmen with a list of finalists by Thursday, September 12.
Board members will begin interviews with the candidates on Monday, September 16, and make a final decision on a new town administrator by Wednesday, September 18. During the week of September 23 to 30, the board, the consultant and the successful candidate will work together on a contract. The new administrator will then be expected to start in their new position as of October 1.
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The search for a new town administrator became necessary when the board and current town administrator, Mr. Guerino, jointly agreed to end his employment with the Town of Bourne as of June 30. Mr. Guerino has decided to seek employment closer to his family and home in Vermont.
The selectmen and Mr. Guerino have agreed on a temporary extension of his contract to September 30 while the search for his replacement is held.
Mr. Guerino gave a salary range of anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000 for the consultant’s fee to be included in the Request For Proposals. Selectman James L. Potter suggested that a dollar amount not be included and instead left up to negotiation.
Selectman Jared P. MacDonald said he would like to see the new town administrator’s selection and contract finalization finished sooner than September 30, the final date of Mr. Guerino’s temporary contract.
“I know there’s a lot of crunching to do, but I hate to wait until that last day,” he said.
Mr. Potter suggested that the time frame for the month of July could be tightened up, so the whole process could finish sooner. Mr. Guerino agreed and said he would make revisions for the board to review at their next meeting on Tuesday, June 11.
Board members were also divided over the role to be played by the screening committee. Mr. Guerino said it would be up to the screening committee when they would schedule candidate interviews. Mr. Potter said the selectmen are part of the screening committee, to which Mr. Meier and Mr. Guerino disagreed.
“No, they report back to us,” Mr. Meier said.
“I don’t read it that way,” Mr. Potter replied. “Read the charter again.”
Mr. Potter went on to say that the committee “is supposed to assist the board of selectmen, not replace the board of selectmen.” Mr. Meier and Mr. Guerino pointed out that the committee’s responsibility is to bring the selectmen a list of finalists for the board’s consideration. Mr. Potter continued to insist “that’s not how it reads.”
“The board is always involved,” Mr. Potter said.
Board members concurred that a selectman could be made a member of the screening committee. As to the function of the committee, chairman Judith M. Froman said it would be investigated and a determination made at next Tuesday’s meeting.