JAY – Selectmen voted unanimously Monday to extend Town Manager Ruth Cushman’s contract one year.

“Selectmen and I have agreed to a one-year extension on my contract,” Cushman, of Wilton, said Tuesday. “This will begin on July 1.”

She had previously planned to retire as of June 30, 2013.

The decision came after an executive session.

She will receive a 1.5 percent raise and an additional week of vacation, giving her five weeks of vacation in total. She has been Jay town manager for 12 years.

“This does not mean that I will work another year,” Cushman said. “One of the conditions will be that I can give a 90-day notice at any time and help them through the hiring process. I have a very good working relationship with this board, and there are several pending items that need attention. Both parties felt that it is in the best interest to wrap those things up before we change managers.”

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Cushman said she plans to start working on a job description for the position and an advertisement after July 1, 2013.

She will also be jotting down information that the next manager will need know.

“We have some unique traits here in Jay,” Cushman said.

There are five union bargaining units and the paper mill, which means that the next manager will have to know about labor relations and tax-increment financing programs. The town granted the mill a TIF several years ago.

“There is a lot pending right now, and we have legal issues such as arbitration, which we filed this week,” she said.

The town and the union, representing five transfer station workers, have not reached an agreement on a contract and are going to arbitration.

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