New Dexter town manager welcomed to the position

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DEXTER — Several days into the job new Dexter Town Manager Jim Chandler was welcomed and sworn in during a Sept. 14 town council meeting.

“It is our pleasure to introduce our new town manager, Jim Chandler,” Council Chair Marcia Delaware said. She said Chandler, who succeeds the retired Shelley Watson, most recently was deputy town manager in Amherst, Va. Prior to that Chandler spent about two years as the assistant city manager for Caribou after several other county and municipal government jobs in his native Virginia.

“It’s only been two days but it’s been great to have someone in the office,” Delaware said.

Chandler’s beginning salary is $62,000 and after 90 days probation the amount will go up to $65,000. His contract is still being finalized.

“It’s a pleasure to be here,” Chandler said. “I have had the opportunity to meet with each of the department heads the last two days.” He said he has been busy getting to know residents and businesses as he gets acclimated to Dexter.

In other business, the council authorized a referendum question on the Tuesday, Nov. 7 ballot. The “yes” or “no” question will ask residents, “Are you in favor of the town of Dexter opening public ways to the operation of All-Terrain Vehicles (ATVs)?”

“(Councilor) Peter Haskell had the great idea of putting this out as a public opinion question,” Delaware said. She said there was a public hearing in July concerning ATV access on the Zions Hill Road but the referendum would enable for the entire town to weigh in.

“It’s non-binding,” Haskell said, as the results would give the council data for any future decisions concerning ATVs and operation may be permitted.

“Just to be clear it’s secondary roads, it’s not state roads,” Police Chief Kevin Wintle said.

The council also accepted the donation of materials and labor from residents to build a batting cage at Crosby Field.

Fire Chief Matt Connor said during the summer a Dexter travel baseball team was playing in Brewer when he saw a batting cage set up at the field. “I thought ‘why doesn’t Dexter have this?,” Connor said.

Connor said he took some pictures and posted the images to social media and within minutes had responses favoring the idea. Connor said soon offers for materials and assistance were being made to make the batting cage a reality.

“It’s just a matter of coming together to make it happen,” he said. “I will have a list when it’s all said and done,” Connor added about the material amounts and who gave of their time.

“I don’t think it’s going to take much to make it happen,” he said.

Observer photo/Stuart Hedstrom
SWEARING IN THE NEW TOWN MANAGER — New Dexter Town Manager Jim Chandler was sworn in by Town Clerk Kim Hughes, with Council Chair Marcia Delaware looking on, during the Sept. 14 council meeting. Chandler’s first day was Sept. 13 and he is a former assistant city manager in Caribou.

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