The decision to hire a town manager in Oak Creek to oversee all the departments, projects and treasurer's responsibilities may be made at the next Oak Creek Board of Trustees meeting.
At a work session following the town meeting on July 27, the board mulled over three hiring options, presented by the acting treasurer, Nancy Stahoviak. The options show the different avenues the trustees could take for filling the treasurer's position, which has been vacant since January.
Each choice has the town hiring at least two people, whether it's a town manager with an assistant or a treasurer with an assistant.
Option one shows the hiring a town manager, who also would be a treasurer, for $50,000 a year. That job would be backed by a full-time assistant treasurer, who would get paid $28,288, and a part-time administrative assistant earning $11,440 a year.
Option two is hiring a town treasurer at $33,280 and an assistant at $28,288.
Option three shows the town hiring a part-time treasurer at $16,640 a year, a full-time assistant treasurer, making $28,288 a year, and a part-time administrative assistant at $11,440 a year.
"These are ballpark numbers," Stahoviak told the board. "They're not set in stone and it's not backed by any research."
For the treasurer's position alone, the estimated wage is increased by $3 an hour from the last treasurer's pay. That is an attempt to lure someone with experience who will stay, Stahoviak said.
"I've lived here for 50 years and I think it's time for a town manager," Trustee Bill Paxton said.
He supported option one.
Mayor Deb Van Gundy agreed.
"If we're going to look at natural gas, the ice rink and street paving, we need someone like a town manager to make sure it gets done," she said of the issues that the board has recently worked on or considered.
Currently, no one is paid to oversee the general operations of the town. Van Gundy has been volunteering ample amounts of time to try to help with this, but she said someone who has been specifically trained to do that job should be hired.
"I don't know how to be a boss over all these people," she said.
Furthermore, each trustee is assigned as the administer over one of the town's departments, but Van Gundy said that doesn't completely work.
"We don't have the time or expertise to oversee the departments," she said.
But residents have voted on the idea of a town manager before, trustee Mike Kien said, and they were not in favor of adding the position.
"The people have spoken on this issue," he said.
Two years ago, Oak Creek residents were asked in an municipal election if they wanted a town manager. The issue lost acceptance by 18 votes.
Because of that vote, Kien has been against the town manager position since it was brought up at the beginning of the year. He supported option three.
Trustee Dave Harper supported option two.
Van Gundy said the vote should be considered, but she believed the issues are different now.
"At the time I was one who was against it," she said. "But now I believe we need a town manager."
Oak Creek has had a town manager before and it didn't work out, Oak Creek resident Rita McNutt said to the board.
"If we can come up with a real town, not someone who has no experience, it might be a good idea," she said.
The three options will be placed on the agenda for the August 10 meeting and the board will vote on which one the town should pursue.
To reach Doug Crowl call 871-4206 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org