CHESHIRE -- Town officials appointed Mark Webber as town administrator for the second time around at Tuesday night's Selectmen's meeting, inking a three-year contract this time.
"I'd like to welcome back Mark as our permanent town administrator, with Carole Hildebrand as his administrative assistant," Selectwoman Carol Francesconi said at the meeting. "Mark will be here Tuesdays from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Carole will be in his office Fridays 1 p.m. to 5 p.m."
Webber previously served as Cheshire's town administrator from 2002 to 2008. He was the town's first administrator.
"I think it will work nicely and we'll get a better system going as we move along," Webber said.
Webber is also the administrator of West Stockbridge. Francesconi said appointing Hildebrand as Webber's assistant allowed for flexibility with the position. The two will share office space and the two will be paid based on hours worked from the town's $25,625 appropriated administrator salary.
"We're working between [Webber and Hildebrand] with the posted salary of $25,625," Francesconi said in an interview after the meeting. "We want to appropriate the salary for the appropriate hours. ... First off, we wanted to hire him and make sure he could do the 12 hours on Tuesdays."
Former Town Administrator Thomas Webb vacated the position back in May after being hired as Clarksburg's administrator.
After Webb left, town officials reached out
In other business at the meeting, town Highway Department Road Superintendent Peter LeFebvre reported that bids are out for a replacement Highway Department truck and blacktop jobs on parts of Wells Road, Outlook Avenue and Windsor Road.
LeFebvre also said he was contacted by the state Department of Environmental Protection regarding a culvert in disrepair on Route 116 near the entrance to Fales Road.
LeFebvre said he's well aware of the state of the culvert and visits the site several times every week, but the town has neither the money or the incentive to fix it.
"The state was supposed to replace it under the hazard mitigation program," he said.
If the culvert were to collapse, it could cut off the lower end of Route 116, leaving Route 8A as the lone byway connecting motorists to Cheshire, Adams and North County.
The future of the culvert was not discussed at Tuesday's meeting, but given the town's inability to take on the financial burden, LeFebvre and the rest of town government remain dependent on further action from the state.