Your Town Needs You

The Select Board is currently hiring a minute-taker for the Budget Committee. The pay rate is up to $11.00 per hour.

The Budget Committee meetings quarterly throughout the year but almost weekly in the fall. Meetings are Wednesday evenings at 6:30pm at the Town Hall. It is currently budget season so we are looking to get this position filled as soon as possible.

 

 

Veterans Day Event at the Wentworth House

Serving Their Country at the Wentworth House

In honor of American veterans, past and present, the Colonel Paul Wentworth House will host Serving Their Country, a day-long living history tribute to American soldiers on Veterans Day, Sunday, November 11.

Visit the historic Wentworth House in Rollinsford for a day of displays and living-history demonstrations illustrating the lives and stories of America’s citizen-soldiers from the colonial period through modern times.  Historical reenactors with carefully researched and period-accurate uniforms and equipment will portray soldiers from the colonial and Revolutionary eras, the Civil War, the world wars, and the Vietnam War.

In addition, to mark the centennial of the end of World War I, the presenters will march to the Martel-Roberge American Legion Hall on Foundry Street for an 11 am ceremony commemorating the exact hour and day of the armistice which ended that conflict in 1918.

The event will run from 10 am to 4 pm at the Wentworth House on Water Street in Rollinsford. Admission is $5 for the general public; free for veterans and active duty personnel, children, and ARCH members.

The circa 1701 Wentworth House is maintained by the Association for Rollinsford Culture and History (ARCH) as an educational and cultural center for the community.  For more information about this and other events at the Wentworth House, consult the ARCH website at paulwentworthhouse.org.

Town Administration Information Update

Town Manager? Town Administrator?

The Select Board Evaluates Options

On Monday, September 24th, Lorraine Hansen, as Chairperson of the Ad Hoc Town Manager Committee, presented the Committee’s findings to the Select Board. It was a concise summary of the almost 50 page final report which compared Rollinsford to 15 other towns with similar population and property valuation. Not surprisingly, the Committee found that the amount of time and money Rollinsford has for administrative support is below what the other 15 communities have. Further, the Committee is recommending that the Select Board hire a Town Manager or Town Administrator.

After the presentation the Select Board opened a public hearing for the public to weigh in on the information presented to them. While the Select Board deliberates on the information presented and the options before them, we thought it prudent to share with the wider public the questions posed during the public hearing with answers in order to better inform the residents of the situation at hand.

What is the role of the Select Board?

These three elected officials are charged by law to run the town. The law specifically speaks to managing the budget, assessing and welfare but the Board also signs all contracts and essentially acts collectively as the CEO of the town.

Why are we short staffed all of a sudden?

The fact is, we never had adequate staff at the town office but the issue is compounded by increasing demands from the public and state and federal government agencies. As we move forward, we can  expect more demands from both the state and federal governments that require professionally trained staff to handle.

How many employees does Rollinsford have? Can any of those people take on more tasks?

The town employs 8 full-time and approximately 20 part-time people not including elected officials and our on-call fire department. Only three people work regularly in the town office: the tax collector, town clerk and the administrative assistant. The administrative assistant is full time, and the other two people work other jobs. The town clerk is an elected official whose duties are set by law and include registrations, dog licenses, and births, deaths and marriages. The Select Board does not have the authority to delegate additional duties to that office or control the position’s working hours.

It would be in the best interest of the town to have one responsible individual managing operations.

What is the difference between a Town Manager and a Town Administrator?

Town managers have the authority to hire and fire employees whereas town administrators have whatever authority the select board delegates to them. Adopting a town manager form of government requires the approval of the legislative body at town meeting. The select board has the authority to hire a town administrator at any time. The New Hampshire Municipal Association published an FAQ on their website with more information: https://www.nhmunicipal.org/TownAndCity/Article/248

What is the ultimate goal?

The governing body of the town should be a diverse group representative of the residents of Rollinsford. That will no doubt include working individuals. The goal is to provide consistent, professional management of daily operations regardless of the time, talent and education of elected officials. With proper administrative support, the Select Board can focus more of their time making strategic planning decisions while staff is performing essential daily functions. With proper staff oversight, Rollinsford also has the potential to benefit from numerous state and federal funding sources for projects and essential services.

The final report of the Ad Hoc Town Manager Committee is available on the town website: https://rollinsford.nh.us/boards-committees/town-manager-ad-hoc-committee/

Call for Volunteers

The Town of Rollinsford has several important boards, commissions and committees peopled by interested and engaged volunteers who wish to serve the community.   If you are interested in volunteering, or would like to learn more about one of the groups listed below, please send an email or call the Select Board’s Administrative Assistant, Caroline Kendall via email, or at 603-742-2510.

Open positions:

Planning Board Alternate

Energy Committee

Historical Committee

Recreation Committee

 

Holiday Food Baskets

Once again the Rollinsford Police Benevolent Association will be distributing full holiday meal baskets at Thanksgiving and Christmas to those less fortunate.  The RPBA is looking for donations of frozen turkeys, canned goods, boxes of stuffing, cash or grocery store gift cards.  For more information about the program, or should you know someone who could use a holiday food basket this season, please contact Chief Bob Ducharme at 742-8549, ext 303 or via email.