Letter to the Editor: 'Wenham has Lived Through Much More Difficult Times'

Letter writer and former Wenham selectman Harriet Davis outlines what she thinks are important considerations before the two towns merge the finance departments

To the Editor: 

In regard to the proposal to merge the Hamilton and Wenham finance departments, I urge the following:

Wenham should maintain its own Finance Director - actually just a Treasurer-Collector is required - and certainly should not rush into a joint program until and if: 1) the job is properly posted

2) the $230,000 software conversion grant is obtained

3) a full vetting with costs and savings in public hearings is obtained, and

4) both town meetings vote approval.

No matter what the future holds for Jeff Chelgren, Wenham should not merge the Town Administrator/Manager function with Hamilton.

Wenham should revisit the ECO decision since no more than a shovel of dirt has been removed from the site.

A full accounting of all current joint programs, formal and informal, should be made public.

The current seat of the pants management style needs to be replaced with less fast tracking and more thoughtful analysis. More decisions should be brought to Town Meeting before the execution of inter-municipal agreements, not just after a Board of Selectmen vote.

Wenham has lived through much more difficult times over the past 368 years and can certainly survive the current problems.

Harriet Davis


chris a November 20, 2011 at 05:24 AM
agreed,there have been many last minute decisions that were voted on by selectman hastily including the gic insurance which has cost the employees enormous copays which is a big chunk of a small enough paycheck, not 90,000 per yr salary minus union dues which dont have any standing any more and are not cheap and the health insurance did go up this yr from gic by 25 dollars a week so i,d love to know what the savings are not just for the town this yr but the employees
Catherine Hardy-Tinsley November 20, 2011 at 05:42 PM
Regardless on what position you take with these matters this is an important time for Wenham and for residents to participate in our future as a town! Talk to your Selectmen and Finance COmmittee..they make the best decsion for Wenham with information at hand.
Michelle Bailey November 20, 2011 at 09:34 PM
I wonder if we should let the Wenham Government Study Committee finish their work before moving on a major reorganization. Is this one of the areas they are currently studying?


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