Looks Like Lynch to Get Nod for Top Town Post Tonight
Barnstable Town Council met in executive session last Thursday night at town hall in order to discuss whether to offer Interim Town Manager Tom Lynch the full-time position; a vote is expected at tonight's council meeting to make Lynch's hiring official.
It looks like another former state representative will fill the town's most important managerial role.
Following an executive session meeting last Thursday night at Barnstable Town Hall, the Town Council is expected to vote this evening to hire Interim Town Manager Tom Lynch as the town's full-time Town Manager. Lynch's current contract is set to expire on June 16 and he is currently being paid at a rate of about $143,000 annually.
Lynch, an Attleboro native and former State Representative, served as assistant town manager under John Klimm before Klimm's somewhat tumultuous departure last fall. Klimm is also a former state representative and is now the Town Administrator in Portsmouth, Rhode Island.
Klimm officially left his position of 12 years in December 2011 after the council voted 6-5 last June to shorten his contract and offer him a buyout through March 2013. It was a political move that heavily divided the council and it hastened several changes at the election polls. Klimm stopped his day-to-day duties at the end of September, when Lynch took over as Acting Town Manager.
Even in his roles as "interim" and "Acting" Town Manager, Lynch hasn't lost the chance to keep the town running smoothly and to implement a variety of new ideas, including the creation of the web site www.barnstableiforum.com. The web site, he said this winter, was a way to offer Barnstable residents the opportunity to speak out and have a more interactive way of communicating with town government.
A longtime resident of Centerville who lives with his wife Jennifer Longley, Lynch had said recently he was "hopeful" that the town council might consider his efforts and expertise representative of his overall abilities. He indicated that the transition from "Interim" town manager to "Acting" Town Manager was a big step in that direction last February.
A pair of council subcommittees was working with Lynch on a nationwide search to find a new town manager and also to work out details of how to keep him aboard at the expiration of his contract. The Barnstable Town Charter allows up to six months to hire a temporary town manager. The council had voted this winter to appropriate up to $30,000 to conduct the search. Combined with the estimated contract buyout of former Town Manager John Klimm, the price to replace Klimm was nearing the $500,000 mark.
But with the expiration date of Lynch's six-month contract to serve as Acting Town Manager set to expire in a few weeks, some pressure to hire a skilled, amiable and committed person such as Lynch may have been increasing in the hallways and side-rooms at the aging brick manse on South Street, Hyannis.
Tonight's town council agenda item calls for a discussion on a contract term from June 17 through June 30, 2014. No summary of that agenda item followed.
Prior to being hired in December 2007 as assistant town manager, Lynch served as executive director of the Barnstable Housing Authority for 16 years.
He was not immediately available for comment this morning.