Darien can appoint its town clerk, treasurer
DARIEN TOWNSHIP The Darien Town Board can now appoint the people who serve as town clerk and town treasurer.
Voters approved two referendums Tuesday, the first to appoint the town clerk, 416-361, and the second to appoint the town treasurer, 402-368.
The elected incumbents will remain in office until their terms expire, when the town board will appoint people to the open positions. The incumbents could be appointed.
Town Chairman Cecil Logterman said it’s critical that the people who serve as town clerk and town treasurer have the qualifications necessary for the job.
“More and more demands are being made of the clerk, and more and more demands are being made of the treasurer,” he said.
Logterman said there was no guarantee that a person seeking election for either position would have had the appropriate background.
“Sometimes it can become a popularity contest,” he said. “And then when the election is over with and you have that person in there … the skills aren’t there.
“They don’t really know that inner workings of the office of the clerk or treasurer. And then you’re at ground zero.”
Logterman said it was risky to rely on a qualified person to run for either position.
“There’s a lot of important stuff that goes on behind the scenes,” he said.
Barbara Wheelock has served as town clerk for 18 years, and Rick Logterman has served as town treasurer for 11 years.
To replace their experience would be “hard,” Logterman said, and to do it every two years in an election would have been daunting.
“We could be starting all over every time,” he said.
The Darien Town Board began discussing the issue of appointing its town clerk and town treasurer about a year ago, Logterman said, and spent time communicating with voters.
“We thought long and hard on this,” he said. “This is the direction we wanted to go.”