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Stoughton Selectmen, HR Director Start to Discuss Town Manager Search

Town Manager Francis T. Crimmins, Jr. informed selectmen of his resignation, effective March 31, 2012. Selectmen are taking the first steps in finding a replacement.

In his first public statements since announcing his resignation as Stoughton’s Town Manager, Francis T. Crimmins, Jr. dispelled some rumors regarding his resignation, but those looking for a definitive reason as to why Crimmins is departing, were left empty-handed.

In addressing the board of selectmen at their Tuesday meeting, Crimmins said, “No, I am not sick, other than a cold…I also heard I was going to be president of a university. That’s not accurate either.”

He thanked the community for their “kind remarks” upon the announcement of his resignation.

In a addressed to Board of Selectmen Chairman John Stagnone, dated Jan. 24, 2012, Crimmins informed Stagnone of his intent to , effective March 31, 2012.

As for why he resigned, the Town Manager said, “sometime down the road I’ll comment on those things, but right now I’m working as you folks are with town department heads” preparing the budget and preparing for Town Meeting.

The board of selectmen by a 3-2 vote hired Crimmins, a former First Justice at the , in January of 2010.

Selectmen, with the help of human resources director Martin McNamara, turned their attention to finding Crimmins’ replacement Tuesday night.

“I wish I was here on a totally different topic, but it is what it is,” McNamara told selectmen.

While Crimmins’ departure is just two months away he cautioned selectmen to “take time with the process; there’s no need to rush.”

“It’s the most important appointment you folks make,” he said.

McNamara noted that seven other towns are currently looking for town managers or town administrators, and two of these towns—Hanover and Framingham—recently extended their searches, unsatisfied with the initial applicant pool.

Overall, McNamara said the pool of town manager candidates is “dwindling,” with many deterred by the long hours, growing responsibilities and increasing public scrutiny.

Selectmen discussed some basic parameters for the town manager search, and seemed to be leaning towards hiring a firm to assist with the process.

Other options include the selectmen conducting their own independent search or to have an in-house search, but McNamara cautioned that if the search is done in-house. “I don’t think it’s appropriate for a person who will potentially be a candidate to be reviewing resumes.”

Consulting firms also have resumes from candidates in other towns, which could speed up the search process, McNamara said. He estimated the cost of utilizing a firm could be between $5,000 and $20,000. 

Selectmen also seemed to be willing to waive the current residency requirement for the right candidate. Selectman Cynthia Walsh pointed out that this is not a requirement for other department heads.

McNamara advised selectmen to keep the qualifications for the job broad so it doesn’t deter potential applicants. He used the example of a CEO of a major company who might not meet all of the criteria but would be a candidate “worth talking to.”

Selectman John Anderson said he would like to see an advertisement for town manager include a salary range and background information about the town of Stoughton.

McNamara will be taking the suggestions from the selectmen and drafting job requirements and an advertisement for the position.

He told selectmen that the search for a new town manger is “at minimum a six month process.”

Selectmen are scheduled to meet next Tuesday, Feb. 7.

DarkKnight February 02, 2012 at 12:43 AM
Rizzi is the joke. She gets a raise when she has virtually no experience and her own staff wants her out. I don't believe that Frank or Rizzi needed a raise but Frank will be missed. This town keeps sinking lower and lower. Schools are now ranked in the bottom 3rd of the state and anyone with the means send their kids to private schools. How sad. I too will be leaving when the market permits. I'm ashamed to tell people where I live.
DJ February 02, 2012 at 01:45 PM
Schooldigger, Boston magazine and State MCAST results all put Stoughton in the middle and far from the bottom 3rd as you claim. Granted, I want better, but complaining relentlessly is not the answer. You've been attacking Rizzi for quit sometime and you make claims you can't back up such as "all her staff hates her or wants her out". That's baloney. Some staff, driven by a very divisive union president have been extremely verbal in the past because they didn't get there way, but the majority do not have a problem with Rizzi and close staff that I know, respect her. Rizzi had not received a raise in three years and her compensation was below average. I have no problem with her receiving an increase, but I do not support the way or extent it was presented. Frank may be missed by some, but so wasn't Mark. Frank has some major strengths, but his weaknesses are what caused problems and ultimately impacted HIS decision to leave. The market conditions exist everywhere so waiting for a change is a lousy excuse. Take your shame with you, it's destructive and embarrassing.
Stephen Mack February 02, 2012 at 04:38 PM
Gotta Say..... again, a lot of negative comments, with no tangible support....I am actually very proud to be living in Stoughton....A lot of tremendous people live in this town..... moved here in 99.... and have never regretted the decision.... my goodness people find it so easy to complain, instead of coming up with suggestions for improvements.... personally, whiners bore me... people that throw out broad statements that have no basis, or no point of fact bore me as well...DK has a tendency of throwing out negative statements that have no foundation at all.. Hopefully, his venom won't afflict our town to much while he is still here....are there enough funds in savings where we can throw a town celebration when DK finally does move.....?
DarkKnight February 02, 2012 at 05:05 PM
There are a lot of great people in this town but there are far more not so great. Let's not call this a great town, take a ride through the center of our town and take a good look around. As for MCAS Stoughton is ranked 197th out of 332. I'm proud of that I stand corrected barely above the bottom 3rd. However the high school as a stand alone is in the bottom 3rd and has moved down 2 years in a row. Yea I'm negative this town can't get out of our own way. Say what you want about Rizzi. She runs to the press or her open letters when challenged by Frank on there ever increasing appetite for money. Sure let's cry about state funding etc. All towns are in the same boat. The crap that comes out of this town is sad. Sorry you folks can't take a sharp dose of reality but there ain't much to cheer about here. I hope we go with a search firm for our next mgr as I shudder to think Cynthia Walsh will be deciding who runs this town. Negative I know.
DJ February 02, 2012 at 11:56 PM
DN, you again distort facts. Please provide sources to your claims? Stoughton is not ranked 197 out of 332 by MCAS. This is a Schooldigger ranking based on our entire district unlike many of those listed prior to Stoughton depicting only portions of their districts, which is one reason "schooldigger" is a poor choice for accurate or realistic data, but is often referenced because it is one of the first source listed in a search. You then claim the high school is ranked in the bottom 3rd (it is not) and has moved down two years in a row (it has not). MA MCAS and Globe ranking show 10th grade (last MCAS level test) as follows: 2009 2010 2011 rank Scores rank Scores rank SCORES English 167 84 118 88 143 89 Math 179 75 177 79 201 73 Science 157 69 132 75 123 77 Math showing the only decline in rank and one year in score. Its worst year remains in the middle percentile at 201 out of 351 schools. English and Science show improvement the last two years out of three with their top rankings found within the top third and high middle in the state. Note also some schools preceding Stoughton in rank do not include SPED.

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