Ferrisburgh hires part-time office helper

FERRISBURGH — The Ferrisburgh selectboard did not look far to find temporary help for the Ferrisburgh town office: On Oct. 10 the board hired its meeting minute-taker to help Town Clerk Gloria Warden and Assistant Clerk Pam Cousino while they work through a recording backlog.
Jean Silveira, who has a lengthy résumé in marketing, website development, and freelance writing and publishing, came aboard this week in what according to minutes will be “a part-time clerical” position that will pay $15 an hour for up to 20 hours a week.
The job is intended to last only as long as the town’s current fiscal year, which ends on June 30, and according to minutes Silveira’s work will allow Warden and Cousino to “get caught up on their current backlog of work.”
Selectboard Chairwoman Loretta Lawrence said Silveira’s position will not offer benefits, and that her hours would not necessarily always max out at 20 hours.
“It probably will be less,” Lawrence said, adding, “Gloria is preparing a tentative schedule.”
Lawrence said Silveira will work “under the guidance” of Warden, but ultimately answer to the selectboard. 
Lawrence said Silveira stood out among three good candidates, all of whom the board interviewed at its Oct. 10 meeting.
“She’s actually over-qualified,” Lawrence said. “She’ll be great.”
According to an email from Lawrence, there have been complaints from attorneys, real estate agents and others researching land records because recent transactions have not been recorded.
In the past, town officials have said that Cousino, also the town’s assistant treasurer, had to spend too much of her time in recent years on treasurer duties under the town’s former treasurer, who was voted out of office in March.
Silveira herself will not record such items as real estate transactions and mortgages, but as Lawrence stated in a email she will “perform various administrative and clerical tasks to support the Town Clerk’s Office, which will include working with the public and assisting with general office duties,” thus freeing Warden and Cousino to do more recording.
At its Oct. 17 meeting, the selectboard:
•  Answered a resident’s question about the town attorney’s ongoing discussions with the owners of the Vorsteveld Farm regarding their illegal tree cutting in the town right of way along Arnold Bay Road. Lawrence said on Wednesday she planned to provide an update of settlement talks at the board’s Nov. 7 meeting.
•  Appointed Steve Huffaker as a town representative to the Addison County Regional Planning Commission and re-appointed longtime Ferrisburgh Green Up Day coordinator Deb Healey to the post. Healey is also the town treasurer.
•  Scheduled its first work session on the 2018-2019 Ferrisburgh town budget for this Tuesday at 6 p.m.

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