If there is anyone that the reporters at The Valley Reporter have on speed dial it’s the local town administrators and assistants to the select board.
These public servants take our multiple calls every week, providing the documents, public information, project costs, names and myriad other details that we need in order to bring you the news about what your elected and appointed officials are up to.
Their responsiveness makes our jobs easier and we appreciate it. They often go the extra mile for us, proactively reaching out to offer agendas, minutes, access to recordings of meetings and more.
These are the folks with their fingers on the pulse of their towns and easy recall of the latest version of the town or highway or library budgets.
And with budgeting season upon us, their accessibility is even more critical to our ability to accurately report on the budgetary bottom lines that impact municipal tax rates.
These unsung heroes aren’t always the public face of the town, like the select board members are, for example, but their work is just as significant, if not more so. They are the keepers of order and we respect that.
Not everyone is anxious to pick up the phone when the caller ID shows that it’s a call from a journalist and not everyone is willing to return our calls, but these folks take and return our calls. We really appreciate that!
Not only do they take our calls, they make time in their work day to meet with us as needed. They are unfailingly friendly, respectful and easy to work with.
They sort the correspondence from the public to the select board, they sort out the bills and warrants for paying at each meeting, they understand grant administration and have a grasp of working in Excel that is enviable.
The cast of characters, in alphabetical order, includes Cheryl Brown, Moretown town administrator; Jonathan Dela Bruere, Duxbury Select Board assistant; Cindi Hartshorn-Jones, Warren town administrator; Trevor Lashua, Waitsfield town administrator; and Patti Lewis, assistant to the Fayston Select Board.
We thank you and hope all our townspeople recognize the value you bring and the service you provide.