March 24, 2005: Headlines: COS - Costa Rica: City Government: Beacon Villager: Costa Rica RPCV David Owen may be stepping down as Maynard interim Town Administrator

Peace Corps Online: State: Massachusetts: February 8, 2005: Index: PCOL Exclusive: Massachusetts : March 24, 2005: Headlines: COS - Costa Rica: City Government: Beacon Villager: Costa Rica RPCV David Owen may be stepping down as Maynard interim Town Administrator

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Costa Rica RPCV David Owen may be stepping down as Maynard interim Town Administrator

Costa Rica RPCV David Owen may be stepping down as Maynard interim Town Administrator

Costa Rica RPCV David Owen may be stepping down as Maynard interim Town Administrator

Owen on the way out?

By Michael Kane/ Staff Writer

Thursday, March 24, 2005

MAYNARD - Interim Town Administrator David Owen may not be around the three to five months expected when the Board of Selectmen hired him in January. Not, that is, if the town of Berlin CT has anything to say about it

Owen has been offered a job by the town that bills itself as the "geographic center of Connecticut" less than two months after stepping in for Town Administrator Michael Gianotis, who is recovering from an illness.

"I'm not on any particular time schedule right now," Owen said last week. "They are doing a background check on me and I expect to here back from them pretty soon."

Selectmen hired Owen from a field of 17 applications that a screening committee eventually narrowed down to four prospects given lengthy interviews by selectmen in late January.

During his interview, Owen described himself as "squeaky clean," carrying a proven track record and a having a "total commitment" to the job. His more than 20 years of experience in municipal government may have helped him land the job following an interview laden with talks about budget problems.

Since that time, Owen has been credited a several public meetings for the ideas he has either come up with or implemented to bring more accountability and cost savings to the town.

In addition to pushing the idea of selling surplus properties, Owen has proposed purchasing streetlights, which could eventually save the town about $100,000 a year. While pursuing that, numerous problems with the way the town was billed for electricity were discovered.

Owen has also entered joint purchasing agreements with the School Department for supplies and natural gas.

Owen also proposed the "pyramid" style override selectmen eventually approved for Town Meeting. Finance Committee Chairman Ronald Calabria recently defended the override style at meetings, noting it allows the town to finish Town Meeting with a balanced budget and leaves the greater question of going beyond Proposition 2 1/2 to the larger electorate.

In past years, overrides have failed at the ballot and then needed a follow up town meeting to correct the budget.

Starting in Illinois as a community planner in the late 1970s, Owen's experience includes administration/executive positions in Needham, Burlington, Milton and Salem N.H. He also served as an interim executive administrator in Douglas in 2001.

He holds master's degrees from the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Cambridge, and Southern Illinois University and spent part of the 1970s in the Peace Corps.

Owen's contract requires him to give selectmen a 7 day notice if he intends on leaving.

Last week, Selectmen Chairman Robert Nadeau praised Owen, but deferred comment on his possible departure, and what steps the board would take fill the position, until the board could discuss the issue as a group.

Owen said his time in Maynard has "been fun."

"The residents have been very supportive. The employees have been very supportive. What else can I say? I've enjoyed my time in Maynard," Owen said.

When this story was posted in March 2005, this was on the front page of PCOL:

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Story Source: Beacon Villager

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Costa Rica; City Government



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