Spring Green moves to create village administrator, questions remain

Nicole Aimone, Editor-in-Chief

The village of Spring Green is set for a few structural changes to its staff following its Feb. 10 meeting, where the board approved the creation of two new positions to alleviate workload stress on the village clerk and employees.

At the meeting, the board voted to create a Village Administrator position, designed for Village Clerk Wendy Crary to fill the spot. With the creation of this position, Crary will carry the title of Clerk, Treasurer and Village Administrator and perform duties for all three jobs.

According to the position description from the personnel committee, Crary would be responsible for implementing and carrying out policies and intent of the village board, provide supervisory, clerical, financial and administrative direction for the village, maintain complete and accurate public records and perform the duties of the clerk and treasurer.

The position will allow Crary to be involved in the hiring process for other village staff, with the exception of the police department, alleviating stress on the personnel committee.

When the board first discussed the topic of this position in January, Trustee and Personnel Committee member Robin Reid stated that Crary already performs many of the duties of an administrator. When asked what in the description she was currently not performing, Crary responded “not much.”

“This will allow for the hiring process to go much faster, the committee won’t need to schedule a meeting for three people, I can bring the chair of the personnel committee in, or if it’s a police officer, I can bring in the chair of the police committee or have Chief Stoddard,” said Crary. “It’s going to speed up the process, which really is the biggest thing.”

Following the approval of the position and position description, the board took impomptu action to appoint Crary into the position immediately, however the discussion and action of hiring for the position were not listed on the approved, public agenda for the meeting.

The agenda items pertaining to the Village administrator position included “discussion and possible action regarding creation of Village Administrator position”, and “Discussion and possible action regarding proposed position description of the Village Administrator Position”

At the meeting, following the approval of position description, Village President Eugene Hausner questioned when Crary would step into the role, and it was determined the village board could determine the timeline.

“I would be comfortable with it coming into effect after our vote if the other board members are,” said Hausner.

Following a question on whether that would require a vote, Crary said “that wouldn’t be a bad idea if it’s desired immediately,”

Valley Sentinel reached out to Crary regarding unagendized action by the board and the hiring process for the position, but did not receive comment by press time. If we receive a response, this story will be updated.

Crary did recuse herself from presenting the position to the board at the meeting, saying “I won’t go too much into it because it actually concerns me, so if someone else from the personnel committee wants to they can.”

The board also voted to create a new part-time Utility Clerk position, that will be responsible for administrative work and billing for the almost 900 water and sewer accounts of the village services, along with part-time administrative duties for the Public Works department.
“Our plan is to hire a part-time person to start, so we don’t put the village too much over budget right away,” said Crary. “It’s just to kind of get us pushing in the right direction for where we want to be in a year or two.”

The board considered this position after Crary presented the need in January, and the personnel committee created a position description. Currently, the Crary is responsible for the utilities and public works duties, which has created additional working hours and stress on staff.
While the position will alleviate administrative and billing work, Crary will continue to oversee accounting, reporting and auditing for the utility services.

“I think the job description looks really good, exactly what we were all expecting,” said Trustee Michael Broh. “I’m thrilled.”