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1/24/2013 Westcliffe trustees abolish managerís job

Squire let go after five years with town

The town of Westcliffe no longer has a manager at its helm.

Following an executive session of town board members on Friday, Jan. 18, the trustees voted to eliminate the manager’s position immediately.

As a result, Robert Squire, who has held the position for some five years, was immediately terminated.

Westcliffe mayor Christy Veltrie said the decision was difficult to make however, it was one the board felt was in the best interest of the taxpayers. “We are being more fiscally responsible,” said Veltrie.

Moreover, said Veltrie, “We looked at other communities our size and found that they didn’t have a manager either.”

Also, said Veltrie, “According to state statute, we are not required to have one.”

With no manager, town clerk/treasurer Kathy Reis and maintenance supervisor Jerry Keffer will now report directly to the board and mayor, just like in other municipalities, said Veltrie.

Veltrie also noted the trustees have agreed to step up to the plate to play a more active role in town operations.

That active role, said Veltrie, will include heading up various committees to review ordinances and such, a previous duty of the manager. Additionally, said Veltrie, the town will contract with someone to complete building and zoning duties also previously handled by the manager.

Being explored, said Veltrie, is the viability of the towns of Silver Cliff and Westcliffe working together to share the building and zoning position.

“This could be a win-win for both towns,” said Veltrie.

Also being looked at by the trustees, said Veltrie, is reducing the hours the Westcliffe town hall is open to the public but no final decision has been made.

As for revisiting the idea of putting a manager back on board in the future, Veltrie said that would not happen for at least a year. She said the board would need at least that long to see if not having a manager affects overall town operations. – Nora Drenner