Lannon, Clark Appointed to Town Manager Screening Committee

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Residents for the at-large positions will be selected on November 29

READING, MA — By a vote of 4-1, the Select Board appointed Library Director Amy Lannon and Police Chief David Clark to serve on the Town Manager Screening Committee on Tuesday. Both Lannon and Clark lead town departments, and both are Reading residents. Select Board member Carlo Bacci was the dissenting vote.

Select Board member Mark Dockser nominated Lannon and Clark for the roles, citing that Clark reports directly to the Town Manager while Lannon does not. Dockser suggested that this gives each of them a different perspective to bring to the committee.

Bacci initially proposed limiting the number of residents at-large to one to include Fire Chief Greg Burns, along with Chief Clark and Town Clerk Laura Gemme, on the committee. Dockser argued that having two residents at-large was the initial intent of the board and that it is important to have community input into the process. He also cautioned against too many staff on the committee. “We could easily fill the committee with employees; that is exactly not what we want to do,” Dockser urged.

Select Board member Christopher Haley, referring to Gemme as “the best town clerk in the state,” noted that Gemme is often overlooked when it comes to appointments to committees in town. After Town Manager Fidel Maltez reminded the board that Gemme is not a department head, Dockser also noted that Lannon is responsible for a larger budget and oversees a greater number of employees than Gemme.

Lannon and Clark will join Dockser, Select Board chair Jackie McCarthy, and Moderator Alan Foulds on the Screening Committee. The Select Board will interview interested residents for the at-large positions on Wednesday, November 29, and vote to appoint two of them to the committee at their Tuesday, December 5 meeting.

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