Salem budget passes electors and Town Board

A Salem town tax levy for 2011 the same as 2010 overwhelmingly passed at a special meeting of electors Thursday night.

The 2011 levy is $3,419,470. In 2010, it was $3,419,500.

From a preliminary budget that would have seen the tax levy increase 19 percent, the board trimmed $271,500 to come up with a levy equal to last year’s. This includes paying for the first year of  debt service for the new Highway Department/Trevor Fire Station building.

Here’s a list of the cuts and additions made to revenues that got the town to the magic number.

The budget upon which the levy was based passed the Town Board by a 4 to 1 vote at a special Town Board meeting held after the electors meeting. Chairman Linda Valentine voted against it.

Though the levy amount is the same, the effect on your property taxes would depend on any changes in your property value and other factors.



  1. Jim V says:

    Last night, the Town electors could have reduced the real estate tax by 25%. The tax Levy is $3.4 Million. I showed the electors $850,000 of money that will just sit in the bank and do nothing. This is over and above any extra that was kept in reserve. The electors chose to let the money sit in the bank and do nothing. Salem School will have a tax increase this year. Trevor will have a large increase this year. You could have had a reduction in the Salem taxes but the taxpayers rejected that. Maybe some people could have kept their jobs or we could have kept some services we lost.

    This Town absorbed $1 million in additional expense because of the Hwy Building (including a $600,000 cost over run) and there is no tax increase and there is $850,000 left over. This proves the Town of Salem taxpayers have been over taxed for years. Last night they had a chance to take some money back and they didn’t and so the Town continues to overtax us. It boggles the mind.

    Ladies and Gentlemen this will continue until you start using the ballot to change things.

  2. taxpayer says:

    Eliminate a clerical position? Why eliminate it completely? From what I understand, it’s the deputy clerk that’s been eliminated – shame on the town board for that one. Every municipality in the State of Wisconsin has a deputy clerk – the deputy doesn’t work for the board, he/she works for the clerk. Salem’s never been without a deputy clerk. I remember a few years ago when there wasn’t a deputy for about eight months and the Board was pushing the then clerk to get herself a deputy. Now, when a clerk has a deputy, you take it away. Who will sign checks and legal documents in the clerk’s absence if you don’t have a deputy?
    Unfortunately, it’s the taxpayers and the Town that end up getting a bad name when things go haywire in the Town. Hasn’t Salem’s name been in the paper, a negative way, long enough? What is the Town Board thinking? Oh wait, or was this an “administrative” thing? Didn’t that clerical position have a little more seniority with the Town that the administrator? Maybe cut his hours back some and save us taxpayers a lot more money.

  3. disgusted says:

    Months ago the clerk filed claims for defamation and because they took her legal duties away. If they take away the clerk’s deputy and the deputy works for the clerk, is this going to be another claim on the town? Who is making these decisions? The town administrator or the town board?
    The town board votes for a building they have now decided we can’t afford. Even though people have let them know it shouldn’t be built in this economy. Now they are getting rid of employees and adding to the problems of this economy. All for their $10 million dollar castle that now they decide they can’t afford.
    Things are getting worse and worse in Salem. It’s becoming a long two years.
    Obviously some people are trying to get re-elected. I hope voters will think about this in April.

  4. taxpayer says:

    Maybe the Town Administrator should read the Wisconsin State Statutes. Town Clerks in WISCONSIN have different duties than in Illinois, where I understand he resides. I don’t get it – The sewer district gets a secretary; the building inspector gets a secretary; the treasurer gets a deputy treasurer, and now, the Town TAKES AWAY the Clerks deputy. “Disgusted” said it best – the Town should probably ready itself for “round two” in court matters. Is this really the best way to use taxpayer dollars – in court for legal fees? If the administrator or the board cause the legal battle, maybe they should pay the legal fees out of their own pockets instead of tax dollars being spent for the problems that THEY are causing the Town. Just who runs that Town anyway, the FIVE people that were voted into office, (yes, Ms. Valentine, it’s a FIVE person board, not just you), or the administrator who is a new employee? When voting in April, I hope the rest of the residents remember just which board members have caused these legal problems for the Town – I know I will. Another idea? Why doesn’t Salem follow suit with the rest of the municipalities west of the interstate – combine the positions of clerk and treasurer, and REALLY save some money.

  5. JiM V says:

    Taxpayer and Disgusted,

    The recommendation came from Pat Casey to the Board. As you said Linda only has one vote. The Board has reminded everyone on numerous occasions that Pat is in charge. Stop picking on Linda and go to the correct source.

    Last Thursday I showed everyone where the Town Administrator is hiding $850,000. It could have been used to save rge clerk. But Pat decided not to. He said at the meeting that the Budget was a good sound Budget.

    At the last meeting that night, the Board approved the Budget 4-1. Linda voted no on the Budget.

    The Board by a vote of 4-1 voted to keep the $850,000 sitting in the bank doing nothing. It would have been nice to use it (by not laying off people or reducing services) or give it back to the taxpayers.

    Remember, Linda voted NO on this Budget. Pat Casy and the other 4 voted yes.

    Jim V.

  6. taxpayer says:

    How galant of you to stick up for Ms. Valentine. But, in the end, she’s been the root of all that’s gone wrong in Salem in that past 18 months. As far as releasing the deputy clerk, then, I stand corrected – shame on the four board members and the administrator for that one. But moreover, shame on the board for allowing an employee, yes, the administrator is just an employee, to tell you who to get rid of. When this matter is taken to court, I’m hoping that the four board members who voted for this and the town administrator are willing to pay their portion of the legal fees. As a side note Jim, the administrator doesn’t vote – he’s not an elected official. Your last sentence said that he and the other 4 voted yes – Casy doesn’t vote. That’s another Wisconsin law that may have some confused.

  7. Jim V says:

    Yes, I know that Pat is an employee. He does not get a vote, but he submitted the budget and it takes 3 Board members to override him. So Pat is more powerful that any two Board Members. For example, if Denny doesn’t like wsomething Pat does he has to get two Board members to agree with him, or Pat can do what he wants. It’s difficult to respond to some who says Linda is the root of everything that has gone wrong in the last 18 months when you don’t state specifics.

    Please remember there was a referendum on whether we should have a Town Administrator. It was defeated by the elcectors. But Diann, who was the town chairman at the time, and the Board, hired him anyway.

    I suggest if you are looking at a villain I suggest that you look at the Town Administrator and the four supervisors.

    Remember he got a raise and you didn’t for 3 years now.


  8. disgusted says:

    My post didn’t insinuate that Ms. Valentine was at the root of all the problems, but she did vote to fund the “castle” or taj mahal” as some refer to it and then, as with the rest of her board decided not to pay for it. It’s gallant that they tried to make up for the saddle on taxpayers, but they are doing it only to make themselves look good for this upcoming election year. How very, very sad that they are playing with people’s lives and added more people to the ranks of the unemployed all for their own selfish purposes. To make themselves look good and to get re-elected. Please remember this folks.
    I remain,

  9. disgusted says:

    Jim V, You bring up some very interesting points. $850,000 in possible surplus. Plus we all had an additional $10 fee attached to our garbage. Tax or fee, there is no difference.
    I do have one question though, how did one man get so much power in such a short period of time?

  10. taxpayer says:

    Who didn’t get a raise for three years? I have my opinion on who the villian(s) are here and it isn’t just Ms. Valentine. Yes, there are others and they should own up to the fact. I’m not quite sure that I agree with the fact that the administrator is more powerful than any two board members; if he’s doing something illegal, it doesn’t matter how many board members are behind what he’s doing – it’s against the law. To say “he can do what he wants”, is a foolish statement to make about an employee. Can Mr. Murdock do what he wants? How ’bout Mr. Zautcke?
    If the employees didn’t get a raise, then neither should the administrator – as we both agree on – he’s an employee too.

  11. Jim V says:


    The $850,000 is not a possible surplus. It is definitely a suplus. I explained it at the Tax Levy Meeting on the 4th. The Town Board violated it’s own policy, suggested by Pat Casey, and approved by the board 3-2, Diann and Linda voting against. Even though I went over it at the Tax levy Meeting not one newspaper reported on it.

    I believe you are asking about how Pat Casey got so much power. The answer is the Board, led by Dian Tesar, gave it to him the day he started.

    I know that this is the third year the office people did not receive a raise. I still have not seen any specific accustaions against Linda.

    I did not suggest that anyone is doing anything illegal. Let me use an example. If Pat Casey said he wanted to terminate John Smith for Budget reasons he can, unless, three Board members say no. If two Board members say no, they lose and John Smith is out of work. So he has more power than any two Board members. This is a very important point. I hope I did a reasonable job of explaining it. that is what happened this time only the vote was 4-1 with Linda voting No.

    No, Mike and Brad are in a different situation. They work for Pat. They do not work for the board.

    Your right about the raise issue. It goes to character. How can you not give your people a raise but take one yourself? It goes to the character of the person. Contract, or no contract.

    Jim V.

  12. disgusted says:

    Do I have this right? Many of the town’s employees have been there many years and yet they have not received a raise in three years, but somone who has been with the town less than 2 years gives himself a raise. The logical thing would have been for him to forego his raise he last 2 years just as the other employees have. It would be a show of good faith and that his heart is vested in the good of the community. Especially when he has terminated employees. On the other hand, it is the board that is letting this happen. Shame on them.

  13. Jim V says:

    Hi Disgusted,

    Yes, that is what I am telling you. It was easy to see the last two years. But this year the Town Admnistrator has decided to allocate some individual salaries to the Town and the the Utilities. But if you have the Budget and take the time to do the math, you will see it. Also, the TA handed out a spreadsheet at one of the workshops that shows the breakout.

    The Board is kind of locked in because they negotiated the contract so that he gets an automatic 3% per year. Now that the contract is signed they are kind of locked in. But they did it to themsleves.

    But you have to look at the make up of the board. They hired a Town Administrator that costs the Town $125,000 per year but they had no experience that I can tell in hiring people. Look at this:

    Diann Tesar, Chairman, Teacher
    Joe Meyer, Supervisor, Teacher,
    Jo Weidmainn, Supervisor, Farmer
    Denny Faber, Supervisor, Manufacturers’rep
    Pat O’Connell, Supervisor, I’m not sure of his background.

    No hiring experience in the bunch. They probably didn’t know what questions to ask.

    Again, for Pat Casey, it goes to his character. How can anyone respect that?

    Jim V

  14. valentine says:

    on this last point, I stood alone diapproving the job description for Mr Casey that was agreed to ONE FULL YEAR AFTER HE HAD BEEN EMPLOYED. Until then he was operating on a summary of tasks used in the process of advertising for the candidates. The four, which at that time, included Ms Weidman, agreed to the job description for Mr Casey which in effect, gave him their 1/5th power. I had placed this on the town agenda not once but twice. Once was within a month of my election to no avail. The second time earlier this year. By the majority vote, they also gave away my 1/5th power. Please, when you state that the board is letting this happen that you realize that 4 are letting this happen. One tried to get corrections but with the same board that decided to hire the man, also gave him their powers. ….

    Regarding the building.. I made three separate attempts to allow people to speak and to allow input to the board and the open houses and the board meetings were ill attended and bingo.. a new building has risen out of the fields. The building is there. It is nearly finished and ready to be occupied. There is no going back. The the prudent approach now is to plan to make that building produce for us.. either in producing better services for those in the southern portion of the town, or as a method to attract a service business to our town along HWY C – such as a private nursing home – something other than one owned by one of the monopoly hospitals that we have hearabouts. I’d like to see a rehab center, a nursing home near by, something to help employ our student children as nurses and technicians and lab people… something to employ those who cook and clean and handle landscaping and snow.. all right here in the town… (so when i need a nursiing home, i dont have to travel 25 miles to Kenosha, or 15 to Burlington, or IF my insurance covers it, 15 miles into Illinois…) Annd yes, Nursing homes require EMS services and for that we can charge fees to reduce the debt on the building. When you look at the building and remark that it is “SOOOO big”, ask Diann about it. Ask Denny About it, Ask Joe about it and ask Pat about it. And, ask yourself about it . What did YOU do to evaluate the size, the reason, the benefits, the secondary benefits or the need. And ask yourself about your presence at the electors’ meeting where the activities on the building were first approved. This was a published meeting, well posted and there was a repsonse of those who were in favor of it. The meetings on this building throughout were ill attended. Not to harp on this too much, taxpayers must be involved in what is happening in their local areas or similar moments of no return will occur again and again. As a little side note, as a VIllage, this building would have had to pass a BINDING referendum, not a 30 minute evening meeting of the electors. The building is here. I intend to make it, and the water tower that will be in place next year work, for us. And of course, if you dont like what is happening with the town, I strongly suggest that people take the time to listen, learn and vote in April or the inevitable primary. And take their neighbors with them to the polls.

    I am very accessible, very visible, very much OUT THERE. More people know me than any of the other board members. I often wonder if some are recognized even after their lengthy service. Much of what is being discussed here in writing is not new to those who have taken the time to call me or stopped me on the street to talk. I invite the emails.. I am at the town hall usually one hour before any town board meeting. ANd of course, there is the MSB discussion board which has many members wwhen discussions about the town can be had. Much to the dismay of some, TOWN BUSINESS does NOT occur on the MSB discussion board. It is no different actually, than this comment forum…..

  15. valentine says:

    And as a confirmation, the town administrator has the power to hire and fire. The four board members gave him that authority. PERIOD. Unless the chair were to call a meeting on this (usually closed) requested by another board member or the employee being dismissed, the admin has the authority. However, as mentioned, if there was a meeting and the majority agreed with the admin, the admin action would prevail.

    What is interesting in this is that one board member could not have done this before the advent of the administrator. It would have been by majority of the board members.. Now, one employee can make the decision and hire/fire and there is no expectation of notice to the board members either. THere is no requirement that the admin tell or advise the board of his intentions.

    Are you understanding my frustration in this?

    It is unfortunate that when these things happened that the changes were not reported upon. ( was not operating when much of this occurred otherwise I am certain that there would have been a Hillock report.)

  16. valentine says:

    Murdock and Zauctke should have contracts.
    The Chief should have a contract.
    Faber, Weidman, Meier and Oconnell did not agree – check the minutes on the website. It was anopen meeting that the discussion and vote occurred.
    The admin has a contract.

    When you look at the eventual admin job description (you can get it from the town) , you wil lnotice that there are no measurements in the content; No expression of quality, no responsiveness expectations to calls, emails or letters, no accountability of activities of each month, no requirement to tell the board that he will not be at the office, no limits on time off and other than the budget, no llimint on who he can fire, or who he can hire. Of course, it is well known that budget money can be spent and the requirement of having board approval on changes to the budget is not exercised. This is why it is most important to not have balances in excess and that there are limited amounts of contingency accounts.

  17. Jim V says:

    Hi Disgusted,

    You are right. You did not accuse Linda of all of the wrongs in the last 18 months. It was taxpayer. I just hope she is not using a Town computer when she makes these posts during the work day.

    Yes, Linda did vote to go forward with the Taj Mahal in August of last year (2009) as the project was well underway. But remember the first vote was in April, 2007 at the Electors Meeting. Diann was the Town Chairman and the hwy/fire dept stacked the meeting and it passed. Shame on the electors for not attending the meeting. Linda and I were there and we voted against it. Or memory is that the agenda item was not published and that this was snuck through, but we are not sure. BUT… shame on the electors for not attending.

    You say the Board decided not to pay for the building but obviously they did decide to pay for it. Actually, the cost of the building was not the problem this year. The problem was the $600,000 cost over run on the water supply. The Town had plenty of money to pay for everything, with no tax increase, as I have laid out earlier.

    The problem is that the Town has been over taxing the taxpayers for years and they are continuing to do that. look, we paid for the building this year. We paid for the cost over run this year. We have $850,000 sitting in the bank and their is not increase in taxes. I have been over the Town Budget for the last year and a half and I know there is a lot of funny accounting going on in this Town, and it continues. I can confidently say that if you are a taxpayer in this Town you are over taxed, even with the new building.

    Regarding making themselves look good for the upcoming elections… the Town of Salem has elections every year. In 2010 we elected two supervisors and they will be up for election again in 2011. In 2010 Linda is up for re-election along with Joe Meyer and Pat O’Connell.

    So the argument that there have doen the Budget to look good does not hold water.

    Let me say that in 2009 the TA proposed a Tax levey increase of 10.9%. In 2010 he proposed a tax increase of 19.2%. Linda led the Board in driving those numbers down. Last year the tax increase was 1.9%. This year it is flat.

    I am disgusted as well.


  18. valentine says:

    Combining clerks and treasurers is not a fiscally sound action. Checks and balances are absolutely necessary. A person approving an invoice absolutely cannot be the same person cutting the check for that invoiced amount. We are not talking about a few thousand dollars in the operation of the town. We are talking about a budget of $3 million dollars.

    Remember that the town’s clerk is an appointed position – like an employee but with job description and statutory requrements of an elected official. The clerk is allowed to appoint/hire a deputy, but there is nothing that states that the town must pay the deputy wages. As an appointed clerk, the wages received at the time of appointment are the wages received each year of the appointment which in April 2010 was agreed to as 3 years by 4 board members. This can be found in the minutes on the town website. In effect, the appointment is a contract for duration and wages.

    With an elected clerk (and treasurer) , actions by the clerk may or may not influence the electors on election day for the clerk position. As an elected clerk (and treasurer) with a combined position, the electorate has a method of changing the individuals in the positions. As an appointed position, the electors dont have a say and since the advent of the administrator, the TOS board does not have much of a say either.

    What is most important in either form – elected or appointed – is that there are very heavily monitored actions and distinct responsibilities of checks and balances regarding monies of the town so that there is not a single chance of in appropriate action. Double and triple checks are important. Readers should understand however, that GAAP are not what is stated in state statutes. This makes it very difficult. What would be in place for large corporations or businesses of $3million, is not what is in place by Wisconsin statute.

    Each monthly meeting, the board approves the VOUCHERS for the monthly checks. Yesterday, the vouchers were a value of $433,286.82 covering 10-12-2010 thru and including 11-8-2010 and two payroll periods 10-9 and 10-31.
    I find it a good thing that there are two and sometimes three separate people involved with the approvals, compilation of the invoices and check writing and budget validation processing. What is very important to know is that the town has many checks and balances with regard to how it handles its ‘cash’. I do check the invoices themselves, not just a list that is received each meeting. I do ask questions and I have been pushing for departmental approval on each invoice regardless of its amount and accurate account numbers. I also make suggestions as to some of the things that I do think should be done to be better at our jobs.

    There is no position for secretary at the town. I believe that everyone has a computer, has a printer access and is capable of using a computer. No secretaries.

    Maybe we should have an open house at the town.. Hall and Utility and new Building and at least a fire station… Maybe everyone should be in their places and just show or explain the things that they do… hummmmm.

  19. valentine says:

    April annual electors’ meetings IF ON THE SECOND TUESDAY OF APRIL do NOT have to be published. It is to be held on that date by statute. Only if it is NOT HELD ON THAT DAY is a notice required. And, if this is the case, there may be the requirement of a specific number of days notice, not the 24 hour notice of a town board meeting. Someone can check the statutes.

    Therefore, if is good for electors to ALWAYS find the time to attend the annual meeting – second tuesday in April. This meeting is chaired, by the chairman who was in office the friday before the annual meeting. THe chair of the meeting does NOT HAVE TO BE the chairman of the town. If the chairman chooses not to chair the meeting, there are other options for electors to elect their own chair to chair the meeting.

    At the special electors meeting of Nov 4, where the levy was voted upon, an agenda was required. This is not an annual meeting. It was an electors’ meeting and by statute, required that the agenda include the highway expenditures and the levy. And had to be posted 15 days before the meeting. The summary included in that for the budget only has to be sufficient that the electors can make a decision to attend or not.

    In addition, the annual meeting DOES NOT REQUIRE THAT AGENDA ITEMS BE LISTED. Any elector can make a motion, gain a second and produce a vote. What the item is however, and whether or not it is binding on the board is by statute. Spending money, buying land, doing something like the building is withint the statutory control of the elector to direct the board.

    The new building and the meeting that advanced it at the start is an example of using lack of knowledge against the elector. It is another reason to KNOW what you can and cannot do as an elector and an illustation that not all meetings are the same.

  20. strat says:

    In referance to the comment made by jim v about the backgrounds of the board members,,,,,,,you failed to mention the town chairs background or education in politics

  21. Jim V says:

    Hi Strat,

    I am assuming that you are talking about the current Chairman.

    Well, that’s a fair point.

    But I am not at liberty to say. She won’t let me. So we are at a stalemate. I can tell you she has interviewed and hired a number of people. But that is as far as I can go.

    So until someone changes Linda’s mind I have to keep my mouth shut.

    But she did not hire the Town Administaror. If she did you would have a basis to complain. She has not made the mistake so no criticism is warranted.

    Jim V.

  22. strat says:

    No complaint was intended, however bringing up the professions of board members would make one wonder if the intent was to somehow make them sound incompitent…….if the town chair doesn’t care to divulge her past managerial/political experience then that speaks volumes in and of itself

  23. Robert says:

    I don’t think the can of worms regarding education in politics and background should even get opened. Remember, the previous clerk of the town was a part-time teacher’s aide when she was elected, and look what happened there.
    I’ve been following this “conversation”, and while Ms. Valentine may not be the “root of the evil”, she, along with some of the other board members, certainly played a big part in it. If the Administrator has the say so of what happens in the town, what’s the purpose of having a town board? Why go through the hassle of the elections? I can’t believe the Board would give all power to an administrator – what were they thinking? So, in other words the town board decided to “turn over the reins” to a person that has never lived in our town, who has never paid taxes to our town, and who still doesn’t live in our town? Wow – Thanks for opening up my eyes to that bit of information. I’ll remember this in April. It seems like the Board wants the title, but not the responsibilities that go with that title.
    As far as combining the clerk/treasurer position, there are many municipalities that have just that. It IS fiscally sound – why else would just about every other Town in the State of Wisconsin have combined positions and they don’t have the trouble that Salem has now?

  24. Salemethics says:

    Sad that people are being provided with misinformation and this forum is being used to campaign.

  25. Salemethics says:

    Well said Robert, I agree with you. They weren’t thinking. There is no purpose in having a town board. One person and possibly two are making all the decisions based on what they want. Who is making the decisions and policies? Is it the board, the chairman, an administrator, or a select few of these?
    Are these decisions in the best interests of all people who live in the Town of Salem or are they on behalf of just a select few? The purpose of a board, whether it is a town, village or city is to make decisions and policies which are in the best interests of everyone, not those who whine the most.

    We now have a building we can’t pay for. Drs. Cross and Smith both warned here (as did others) that it wasn’t within our means to build it. Now employees are being terminated to add to the problems of unemployment, which we as taxpayers end up paying for in the long run via extended unemployment, food stamps, and subsidized health care just to name a few.

    This board has added an extra $10 administrative fee to our tax bills. It was said that the building would have cost about $26 per thousand. Why not just make some cuts and levy for the remainder of the debt service rather than charge us an administrative fee?

    There are claims against the town, who caused these and why? We have a board that doesn’t follow their own policies, gave power to someone else so they wouldn’t have to be bothered, legal fees that are mounting, misinformation being given and these are only the things we know about. What goes on behind the scenes that we don’t know about and when does it stop?

    Hopefully it will stop in April. I only hope that a viable candidate comes forward to run.

  26. Jim V says:

    Hi Robert,

    What is the “evil” in this Town? From time to time there are references, in various media, not just this site, about “evil” and “problems”. But no one is ever specific. We can address the issues and identify the cause when specific issues are identified. But just saying “root of evil” doesn’t do anyone any good. It is a converstaion that only divides and aggravates people. Specifics are always better. Then we can get to the bottom of the issue. Look at Salemethics, she states “misinformation”. But she does not say what the misinformation is and she does not correct it. This serves no purpose and only causes more aggravation. Her post has no value.

    I believe that the Town Board has turned over the operations of the Town to the Administrator because I have heard all of the Supervisors say so at one time or the other. That does not mean that there is no purpose for the Town Board besides the stautatory requirements. The five members set the policy of the Board and the Town. The Town Administrator must comply with the majority. The Town Board is accountable to us, the taxpayers, the Administrator is not.

    At the Electors’ meeting last week a motion was made to have the TA live in the Town and it was defeated. I believe that was wrong.

    I believe that in larger municipalities, like Salem, there is a need for a TA. It is my opinion that we just hired the wrong one and it is because of the inexperience of the people doing the hiring.

    As I recall, he was the TA for a municipality around Milwaukee, maybe South Milwaukee. He had it in his contract that he had to move there within a certain amount of time. This is all public record, I am not divulging any secrets. The deadline was looming when the Salem job opened.

    As far as the Clerk/Treasurer combo goes, I think that in Salem we need two individuals. My logic is that we are the 4th largest Town in the State and the workload is enough to warrant two people. We are bigger than a number of villages in the area. I think the magnitude of the workload is the driving force here and I believe that when the statutes were written that is why they were written the way they were. I say that you define the jobs and assess the workload and then hire the people for the jobs.

    I think there are better ways to run a Town. How about the the Board hires and fires the TA, but the TA works for the Town Chairman. I think some municipailites are run this way.


  27. Robert says:

    I would like to comment on a statement made by “valentine” made earlier in this post. He stated that the clerk was appointed in 2010 and that the salary for the clerk will remain the same for three years – in other words, her salary is “frozen”, correct?? Well, if that is so, does the same hold true for ALL appointed positions? I would truly like to know this because the reports that I’ve been getting from meetings is that some of the appointed people have received raises since their appointment. If YOU look back in the minutes, look back to 2001 when the board appointed it’s first treasurer, and see what kind of salary increases she received the very first year employed – I believe it was $6.00 an hour after her first six months. I have lived here quite a long time and have seen many changes in this town. However, I have never seen an appointed person’s wages remain the same for three years. As stated before, I have my own opinion on combining the clerk and treasurer position. I would be more fiscally sound to do such a thing. The Town presently has an audit done, this would still have to be done; however, we would be paying for one person’s insurance instead of two. May I suggest that the Town put the question to the people at the next election in April. Let the people decide whether or not they want to save a lot of money.

  28. valentine says:

    Clerk’s salary is set when appointed. If you recall Paris had a problem adding responsibilities to their clerk and changing her salary and could not. If TOS did when she first hired, then shame on the town board at the time. She has had her contract renewed for 3 years as of april 2010. She knows what she will make for 3 years…

    does not hold tru for other than the Treasurer/and clerk. Re the deputies.. the clerk/treasurer can hire them. there is not provision in statutes where the TOS pays for either of the deputies.

    You may not have seen them remain the same, that does not make it PER STATUTE….

    It is not fiscally sound in termes of mechanics of checks and balances to have the clerk and treasurer all int he samee personality. For the amount of money processed at the town, not to mention the volume of transactions for the 3rd largest town in the state, it would be irresponsiblie to have them combined.

    If reports given to you were accurate and complete, y ou would know that the town has eliminated the deputy clerk from their payroll and insurance roster.

    I would offer that learning more about $850,000 noted in the earlier portion of the thread AND
    involving onese self in the school budget (reprsenting nearly 58% of your taxes) would be more

    appropriate use of your tme.

  29. Cindi Ernest says:

    The problems the Town of Paris is having is that Pari can’t change the clerk’s salary or add responsibilities because in Paris it is an elected position, not an appointed position. Until Paris has formally changed the position to appointed then it can’t be done. An elected clerk’s salary is set by the electors not the town board.

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