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Council Approves $71K for Salaries in New Administration

Mayor-elect Christenson said new staff members and organization in the corner office will help fulfill campaign promises.

City council approved a $70,230 transfer from the revenue reserve in a 9-1 vote, aimed at funding new positions proposed for mayor-elect Gary Christenson's office last night, including a communications director and business liaison.

Christenson told the finance committee that he wanted a fresh start in the corner office, and to actively pursue ideas he touted on the campaign trail, such as increased transparency and customer service at . 

seeks to gauge resident interest in a variety of such initiatives. One example he listed including using a smartphone application that would allow residents to report potholes and other problems directly to the city's . 

Other plans include creating a city-wide volunteer call on the city's website, which would combine the volunteer lists of numerous organizations and city council members. Christenson said he hoped that list would allow the city to call on volunteers for service quickly.

Councilor-at-Large Craig Spadafora said the town's eager volunteers – especially among it's senior population – was an “untapped resource,” with many wanting to volunteer but not knowing where to begin.

“This would really be an effort to create a city-wide volunteer network,” Christenson said.

Only councilor Barbara Murphy voted against the plan, both in the finance committee and in the council-wide vote.

She said she thought the IT department would be a better fit for some of the social media proposals under Christenson's consideration.

Christenson replied he “respectfully disagreed,” and said the IT department should stick to managing the engineering aspect of the city's network – maintaining servers, troubleshooting, etc.

“I don't want this (initiative) to get lost,” he said.

Outgoing councilor and Christenson's former mayoral opponent, Deborah Fallon, was not present for the meeting.

john December 01, 2011 at 11:39 AM
How about remove $ fee for trash bags , when officials in the office are getting paid 80,000 a year ,after all the taxes that are being paid trash removal is the city responsibility.
Michael Sullivan December 01, 2011 at 12:05 PM
John, Just apply for the tax abatement for 1 and 2 family homes.......it will pay you back more than double the trash fee you are complaining about.
Reebsta December 01, 2011 at 12:33 PM
Let's just stop ignoring that the bags are a double tax and do away with it all together. Make the recylcing commingled and provide us with bigger receptacles.
John Q December 01, 2011 at 02:40 PM
M6, those abatements you speak of, is money that needs to be made up elsewhere, mostly in the form of fee's etc...(read blue bags). Interesting that we approve money for "new positions", yet the past practice has been to not replace and no new hiring. I believe as Ive said before...."nothing changes, nothing changes....or same circus, different clowns, although here, like every other City orginization/department/charter school the names do not change...... I thought things would be different, but if this is any indication of future performance, well, then........we are screwed!
Kelley January 18, 2012 at 02:12 PM
You don't want those barrels. Trust me!

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