The West Bloomfield Township Board of Trustees has approved a number of recommendations from the township’s Personnel Committee, including reinstating the elections specialist/coordinator position.
The board’s decision was made at a Monday, Dec. 12 meeting.
In a letter to the committee, Township Clerk Cathy Shaughnessy stated that she chose not to fill the elections specialist/coordinator post when it was vacated three years ago, but that duties in the Clerk’s Office have increased since then.
Shaughnessy specifically cited the department’s role in processing passports referred by the Post Office, along with the implementation of the electronic poll book during elections and the time invested in the support and training of the staff that came with it.
She added that while keeping the position vacant saved the township $100,000, the office anticipates greater activity in 2012 with three elections on the horizon.
In exchange, the position of senior clerk/typist was eliminated, which Shaughnessy said would still result in savings of almost $90,000.
The new election specialist/coordinator, a Level No. 6 position, will assist the clerk in managing the staff and operations in the Clerk’s Office relative to all township, county, state and federal elections, according to the job description.
As an added provision, the specialist also will be required to have a bachelor’s degree in administration or the equivalent, with business college training in office and communication skills preferred.
The board’s vote was 5-2 in favor of the reinstatement, with Township Supervisor Michelle Economou Ureste and Trustee Steve Kaplan casting the two “no” votes.
“The reason has to do with other general township employees who have not received raises for more than two years and have had total compensation reduced by nine furlough days in 2011,” Kaplan said. “I think other employees might be deserving of a raise or an elevation in job classification.”
In addition, the township board also unanimously approved recommendations from Police Chief Michael Patton to hire five part-time dispatchers ($159,765) for the West Bloomfield Police Department, and also the promotion of one part-time dispatcher to full-time ($64,000).
The board also unanimously approved hiring one water and sewer maintenance field technician, a Level No. 3.5 position that pays $31,327.