The town of Dresden could be joining the majority of Lincoln, Kennebec, and Sagadahoc counties in appointing their town clerk, treasurer, excise tax collector and property tax collector instead of asking voters to elect them.
A public hearing will be held Tuesday, Feb. 25, at Pownalborough Hall, at 6 p.m. to discuss the proposed changes with voters before a special town meeting occurs Tuesday, March 11.
Other changes being proposed concern the terms of office for said positions, from one year to ongoing, with yearly reviews, beginning with the 2014 annual town meeting.
According to a flier distributed by the selectmen to every Dresden citizen, the recommended changes would maintain or reduce the cost of operating the town office by consolidating efforts through reducing the number of positions, from four to two; essentially a clerk/treasurer and tax collector.
The selectmen indicated in the flier these changes will increase efficiency, provide consistent coverage at the town office and improve the quality of service to Dresden residents.
Currently the town does not have official job descriptions for the four elected positions and no specific job qualifications are required. Also there are no background checks required, according to the flier.
The selectmen are proposing that each position be hired by publicly advertising for the positions including the job qualifications. Each position will have a detailed job description and background checks will be taken before a person is hired, according to the flier sent out by the selectmen.
Kim Rzasa was elected as town clerk, treasurer, and excise tax collector, and Ann Pierce was elected to the position of property tax collector in June 2013 for a one year term.
The proposed changes will not effect the position of administrative assistant, held by Trudy Foss. Her duties include assessing agent, health officer, welfare director, and water department operator, according to First Selectman Philip Johnston.
According to information provided by the Dresden Board of Selectmen, of the 43 towns surveyed in Lincoln, Sagadahoc and Kennebec counties, 34 of those towns appoint those positions, and only nine are still elected by voters.