Silt making progress restaffing |

Silt making progress restaffing

Heidi RicePost Independent StaffGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado

SILT It’s taken some time, but it seems the town of Silt is slowly restoring its staff, which has seen a big turnover in the past six months.Since February, the town has lost its police chief, town treasurer, town administrator and community development director as well as the resignation of a town trustee. Even the mayor is facing a potential recall election. The latest turmoil is with trustee Bobby Hays, who is facing felony stalking and harassment charges.But as of the Aug. 13 regular Town Board meeting, a job offer has been made for the town administrator’s position, and a new town treasurer and community development director have already been hired. The police chief’s position was filled in June when Levy Burris took the job.

Betsy Suerth of Glenwood Springs accepted the job as town administrator and turned in a signed contract on Monday afternoon. Suerth has extensive management experience in the building, town government, engineering and industrial fields.”This is a good career path for me and something I’ve wanted to do for a long time,” Suerth said. “I think Silt is at a real tipping point. It’s an exciting time for Silt, and there’s a lot of opportunity for good growth for the town.”Despite the recent upheaval in the town’s government between the staff and the Town Board, Suerth says it’s not unusual for a town such as Silt that is growing at such a rapid pace.It’s a sign of growth and a sign that Silt needs to continue its leadership and effort in developing its comprehensive plan and its vision,” she said. “Silt needs to grow with the vision set by its citizens and board of trustees.”Along with continuing to develop the board’s vision of the comprehensive plan, Suerth said she also wants to work with other affected municipalities such as New Castle, Rifle, Parachute and Garfield County on the redistribution of the state’s severance tax, which helps offset the impacts of oil and gas development.”I hope that we can team up to give positive input to that process to better formulate that plan and receive adequate funds to mitigate the impacts,” Suerth said.Suerth is expected to start her new duties after Labor Day. She replaces former town administrator Rick Aluise, who resigned in May, but has remained with the town in the interim on a contract basis.

The new community development director, Gale D. Carmoney, is slated to begin his duties on Sept. 4. Carmoney is in the midst of moving to Silt from Indian River County, Fla., where he has worked as the senior planner since 2002. He has extensive experience in building and planning as well as environmental protection and parks and recreation.”I wanted to find a job in Colorado, and I saw the ad listed in the American Planning Association,” Carmoney said on the phone, while packing boxes at his home in Florida Wednesday morning. “I worked in a small rural town in north Florida, and I’ve experienced a fast-paced city, and I want to get back to a small town where you know the people.”Carmoney said he also wants to continue the work started by the previous town administrator and planner, a husband-and-wife team, who tendered their resignations a little more than a month ago.”I want to try and carry on with the good work they’ve started and add my own flavor,” Carmoney said.Carmoney replaces former community development director Janet Aluise, who resigned in May and is also currently working on a contract basis.

A new town treasurer, Connie J. Stevens of Parachute, has already started her new job.Stevens has worked as a city clerk/finance officer for the city of Knoxville, Iowa, from 1984 through 2006 and has previously lived in Longmont, Colo.”Currently, I am seeking employment with a town that can benefit from my expertise as a city clerk/finance officer with an outstanding work ethic and the ability to work equally well in both team-oriented and self-directed environments,” Stevens wrote in her letter of interest to the town.Stevens said she was extremely interested when she saw the advertisement for the position in the paper. And since starting last month, she is enjoying her new job.”The staff are just wonderful they’re so kind to me,” Stevens said. “And they’re exceptionally patient. Hopefully, this will be a good fit.”

The police chief’s job has since been filled by Burris, a longtime officer with the Glenwood Springs Police Department and the Garfield County Sheriff’s Office. Burris replaced former chief Paul Taylor, who tendered his resignation in February and currently works for the town as a detective.

A vacancy on the Town Board left by the resignation of trustee Doug Williams has not yet been filled, and letters of interest will be accepted through the end of August.”It will be a board appointment until the next election (in April),” McIntyre said. “Applicants must be 18 years old, a resident of the town for the last year and a registered voter.”Those interested should send in a letter of interest to Sheila McIntyre, Town Clerk, Silt Town Hall, P.O. Box 70, Silt, CO 81652, fill out an application at town hall, 231 N. Seventh St., or call 876-2353.

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