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Wrentham Selectmen Jan. 22: Town Administrator Asks if DPW Can Call For an Emergency

Town Administrator asks selectmen if DPW can call for an emergency without the board's vote.

The Wrentham Board of Selectmen met on Tuesday and discussed the town’s water rate charge. The board voted 5-0 for the charge to remain the same for its fourth straight year, according to the Wrentham department of public works assistant superintendent Jack Manchester.

The board voted 5-0 to appoint Ellen Wojcik as temporary town registrar in the town clerk’s office and accepted Muriel Beresford’s resignation after 20 years of service to the town of Wrentham.

Town administrator William Ketchum brought forth the topic of the town’s department of public works being able to call a weather emergency instead of requiring the board of selectmen to vote and call a state of emergency to get additional workers out for mitigation, including plowing and water pipe breaks.

He said it would decrease response time, but would require discussion in executive session as union rates were brought into the issue in an earlier discussion with the DPW.

The board appointed Alex Leonard to the Wrentham Historical Commission. Leonard has been a volunteer in Wrentham for a long time and said he will work with the board to renovate the Wampum House and the old Fiske building in the future.

Ketchum asked the board to consider applying for a grant to Statnet to use all statistics from each department to better assess their efficiency. He said if the town receives the grant the total cost to the town for the service would be $500. The board agreed to discuss the issue further at a later meeting.

Selectmen appointed Simon Walker to the recreation commission. Walker said he wants to try to bring a community rugby league to the town.

Ketchum said that all the town’s budget proposals from each department, excluding the schools, have been received and will be under review by he and the Finance Committee. He said union negotiations are also meeting and scheduled, depending on the particular union.

The board voted 5-0 to approve a three-percent increase in the town administrator’s salary beginning retroactively from Dec. 13.

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