To the Editor: Town’s wellbeing 

To the Editor: 

After reading the article in the Dec. 10 Islander concerning the possible closing of the Southwest Harbor Town Office for almost the last two weeks of December, I feel that the citizens of Southwest Harbor deserve an explanation from Town Manager Justin VanDongen concerning such a request.  

In the last nine months, the town has lost three longtime and valuable employees, two of whom had worked in the town office. These two were both state certified to do vehicle registrations and re-registrations and collect property taxes. The other employee in the office is simply overworked and has been unable to use her vacation time and wishes to do so before she loses it. The town manager replaced a state certified assistant and hired a person with little experience and no certifications from the state.  

I feel that the short staffing in the office that could lead to possible closures is due mostly to poor management from the town manager. I understand that some other important town functions are lagging way behind (town audit that hasn’t been
submitted yet). It may be time for the Board of Selectmen to start taking some actions for the town’s wellbeing.

Merle Cousins
Southwest Harbor

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