Past Alna town clerk Lisa Arsenault’s hire as interim clerk has avoided a town office shutdown. Third Selectman Charles Culbertson said the board on Monday afternoon named Arsenault to the interim slot, reappointed several officials and touched on when the town might elect a first selectman.
Melissa Spinney’s resignation as first selectman came in a March 30 email that also stated Amy Stockford’s last night as interim would be April 7 and another clerk would have to be appointed or the town office would need to close April 8.
Culbertson said Stockford approached Arsenault last week. Arsenault has “graciously agreed to step in and help us out, which is huge.”
With Arsenault’s appointment, Stockford resigned as interim clerk Monday, Culbertson said. He said selectmen reappointed her treasurer, Mike Trask fire chief and Tom McKenzie code enforcement officer and emergency management agency director.
In accepting Spinney’s resignation Monday, selectmen thanked her for her service and for the food pantry and community garden programs she spearheaded “which have been incredible,” Culbertson said. “She’s been a great first selectperson to be sure.” He said both programs will continue. Several new volunteers have come forward since Spinney announced her departure from those programs, he said. “People have really stepped up. It’s great.”
He said selectmen confirmed from Maine Municipal Association’s (MMA) manual, a resignation is not official until the board accepts it. “We are certainly learning as we jump into this.” He and Linda Kristan, new second selectman, won election March 27.
He said they discussed Monday that, since two members make a quorum, they can save the expense of a town vote for the lone purpose to elect a first selectman by electing one in an already planned vote at the polls, possibly the June or November ones.
Culbertson said he had a long talk Monday with MMA about the general assistance program. “We’re making sure none of that stuff falls through the cracks, at all.”
Monday’s special, in-person meeting at the town office was able to stay indoors due to an attendance of about eight, Culbertson said. He said the board would return to Zoom meetings starting April 7 and may move from Zoom’s webinar format to one where attendees can see one another.