Working environment in Chesterville addressed

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CHESTERVILLE — Selectmen have issued a letter telling residents to bring their concerns about town employees to the board.

The letter was read at last week’s board meeting after an executive session with Town Clerk Pamela Griswold and Treasurer Erin Norton.

The letter indicated that employees complained members of the public were harassing them about their political views.

Selectman Matt Welch read the letter aloud at the meeting.

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“The employees work for the town and are the responsibility of the Selectboard,” he read. “It is the board’s duty to make sure they work in a friendly, peaceful environment,” it read. “It is very important that employees and citizens do not discuss politics in any way while performing duties for the town. Employees have the right to have their political views and shouldn’t be judged because of them. All citizens are asked to respect the employees’ views. The board, not the employee, should address all issues citizens have with the employee(s).”

Selectman Ross Clair said, “We’ve got a real good crew here working for us. We won’t tolerate an atmosphere where they don’t want to work here.”

Resident and former Selectman Scott Gray asked if Clair was addressing those in the room or the entire town.

“Everyone,” Clair said. “If there is a problem, we want to know about it. Get with us. Respect what we’re asking you to do.”

“We have decent people working for us. If we continue as is, we’re going to lose them,” Welch said.

Board Chairman Tyler Jenness thanked the employees for their hard work.

The board agreed to meet Thursday, Sept. 14, to decide the 2018 tax commitment and discuss town office hours. Assessor Allan Gove will meet with the board to set the tax rate for the coming year.

The board previously tabled a decision on office hours to get residents’ opinions.

“The majority of people don’t care what the hours are,” resident Bob Cox said. “Set them and leave them alone.”

The hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday; and 9 a.m. to noon Wednesday.

pharnden@sunmediagroup.net

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