The Waldoboro Board of Selectmen, at its meeting Tuesday, Dec. 13, discussed how to proceed after last week’s announcement from Town Manager Linda-Jean Briggs regarding her intention to resign effective Jan. 20.
Briggs read her resignation letter into the record at the beginning of the meeting. She said she has accepted a position with the town of Rumford and her decision to leave Waldoboro was difficult but necessary after receiving only a short-term contract extension this year.
Briggs urged the town of Waldoboro to continue to work to bring business to town.
The selectmen unanimously passed a motion by Selectman Robert Butler to thank Briggs for her service to the town.
Board Chairman Clinton Collamore said one option available to the board is to hire an interim town manager, which would give the board time to find a long-term replacement.
Collamore said the Maine Municipal Association keeps a list of semi-retired town managers who are available to fill in as necessary in towns across the state.
“They have extensive experience and are willing to go into a community for a period of time,” Briggs said.
Collamore said he wanted to gauge the board’s interest in looking at the candidates before moving forward.
“If we want to check out these people at MMA, that’s one option. There may be other options,” he said.
Selectman Abden Simmons said he does not object to looking into the MMA options.
According to Selectman Jann Minzy, the names and resumes of the interim candidates are available on the association’s website.
Briggs voiced her support for pursuing an interim manager to fill in immediately after her departure, saying all the candidates are certified and in good standing with professional organizations for town managers.
“I would encourage you to go this route,” Briggs said.
Butler listed possible alternatives if an interim manager is not available. He said the chairman of the board could resign and fill the role, the board could find someone in the community willing to do the work, or the town could share a town manager with another town.
The board voted to examine the option of an interim manager before moving toward other alternatives.
Collamore asked the selectmen about their interest in forming a citizen search committee to find a full-time replacement.
Butler voiced his support for a committee.
“I feel strongly we ought to have a committee made up of local residents. We need to get as good of a representation of the town as possible and decide how many people should be on it,” Butler said.
The board also decided to begin advertising for the position as soon as possible.