Selectmen Seek No Compensation for their Jobs

Written by Administrator
 | Wednesday, 09 January 2013 14:20

Duxbury selectmen have decided that they should no longer receive compensation and are recommending that this year’s town meeting zero out their stipends. On Monday, Selectmen Chairman Ted Flynn and Selectman Shawn Dahlen voted unanimously to recommend eliminating the stipends for the Board of Selectmen in the warrant article that lists compensation of elected officials. Selectman David Madigan did not attend the weekly meeting.

The current stipend for the chairman of the selectmen is $2,000 and for a board member it is $1,500. These amounts are part of a routine town meeting warrant article that also lists compensation for the town meeting moderator, the assessors and the town clerk. The assessors’ stipends are the same as the selectmen’s. The town clerk’s salary is listed at $80,000. The moderator receives $40. All are elected positions.

The selectmen’s recommendation does not affect the assessors’ stipends or the town clerk’s salary and it will not go into effect unless it is approved by town meeting.

“I have no problem at all that the selectmen not be paid a stipend,” said Dahlen. “I personally choose not to take any compensation. I’d rather use the resources elsewhere.”

Flynn agreed, saying: “I would be happy to recommend $0 for FY14.”

Selectmen have discussed this issue in the past but never recommended to eliminate their stipends before, because other selectmen had argued that this money helps pay for incidentals related to the job, such as the costs of seminars, meetings and travel expenses.

In other business,selectmen:

  • Voted unanimously to authorize Town Manager Richard MacDonald to enter into a contract with the new town counsel, Arthur Kreiger, of Anderson and Kreiger in Cambridge. Included in the fixed fee contract will be Kreiger’s services at the annual town meeting and monthly office hours.
  • Voted to endorse an annual town meeting warrant station article funding the July 4 parade and party at $10,000.
  • Voted to recommend approval of three warrant articles that grant easements for utility poles for the new police and crematory on Mayflower Street and for the new school project on St. George Street.
  • Learned that the plan to move the emergency dispatch from the old police station to the new fire station has been rescheduled for Feb. 4.
  • Were told by MacDonald that the repairs to the Powder Point Bridge have begun. The fiberglass jackets that will wrap the twelve deteriorated piles are being made and should be on site on Jan. 21. The work is expected to be completed the first week in February, said MacDonald, adding that officials are working on the bid documents needed for the larger $2.4 million bridge repair project residents approved last year.