The Selectmen on Wednesday decided to offer the town administrator post to John Sanguinet of Plymouth.
CLARKSBURG, Mass. — The Board of Selectmen will offer the town administrator post to John Sanguinet.
The decision wasn't easy, as the two board members immediately butted heads over their selections.
Chairwoman Lily Kuzia advocated for Sanguinet of Plymouth; Selectman Jeffrey Levanos for former Selectman Carl McKinney.
"I feel very strongly that my first candidate would be Sanguinet," said Kuzia. "We need someone to step up to the plate. ... We need someone who knows the Department of Revenue and he does."
Kuzia pointed to Sanguinet's background in finance, including his 14 years at the DOR and certificates in various town fields.
Levanos, however, advocated heavily for McKinney, pointing to his long years in service to the town and his intimate knowledge of Clarksburg issues.
"I think Carl would be the best candidate in my opinion, because he knows everything ... he's a wealth of information," Levanos said. "I think he deserves this position. In my opinion, he would be the best person for the job."
Kuzia countered that while McKinney had served faithfully, it was time for fresh blood. She was perturbed by last year's finding by the attorney general's office of open meeting violations by McKinney and then Town Administrator Thomas Webb and felt that she and Levanos had been left out of decision-making.
The attorney general's recommendations still haven't been followed, Kuzia said. She was also unhappy with the financial problems that had continued under McKinney's tenure.
Levanos admitted there had been some issues, but felt McKinney had addressed those in his interview in vowing not to be "fooled twice." He was also concerned at Sanguinet's times as assistant and interim administrator, wondering why he was always "the bridesmaid but never the bride."
"I think it aggravates me that Carl has given so much to the town," Levanos said. "I don't see anything other than a desire to help the town."
They both agreed that Mark Pruhenski was also an excellent choice but, because of the town's current fiscal woes, felt he didn't have enough financial experience "to hit the ground running."
Levanos reluctantly agreed "it is time for new blood." Also factoring into his decision was the fact that the board would have to reject all the current candidates and search again if a decision could not be made.
"It still bothers me that a man who has devoted so much of his time to the town ...," he said, adding that Sanguinet was his second choice.
Kuzia said all the candidates had been queried prior to the meeting to see if they were still interested, and all had responded yes.