Council gives Roberge high marks

Thu, 02/28/2019 - 4:45pm
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After just more than a year on the job, the current Town Council has given the person it hired as Town Manager, Ed Roberge, high marks.

Given that the performance review was held in closed session, First Warden Ken Lacoste provided a summary via email of the review to The Block Island Times after the newspaper had made a query about the review’s results.

“At its January 16 meeting, the Town Council evaluated Town Manager Ed Roberge’s job performance in closed session. While the actual minutes are sealed, Ed and I agreed to have me release a brief synopsis of that evaluation.”

“Overall, the council gave Mr. Roberge a positive review, noting his strengths and accomplishments to date, discussing the goals and priorities he and the council share, assessing his acclimation to the town organization and personnel, and identifying a few areas where there might be room for improvement (although the shortcomings were for the most part reflective of pre-existing infrastructure and/or inter-departmental responsibilities).”

“In the review, the Council and Mr. Roberge did make note of the status of several ongoing projects including the Block Island Power Company conversion to the Utility District, the status of the Harbor Management Plan update, the technology vision plan, and the broadband development project.”

“I think it is safe to say that the council is very pleased with Ed’s presence, confidence, and demeanor in the role of town manager, we are confident that Block island is doing well with his management style, and we look forward to working with him going forward.”

In an email responding to some followup questions regarding compensation, Lacoste said, “Ed is still working under his original contract. Changes, if any, would not take place until a new town budget is approved.” The fiscal year begins on July 1, 2019. While Roberge does receive compensation for housing, Lacoste said that may not continue into the next fiscal year if “the town’s senior management house at the Thomas Property [is] ready by early summer!”

Lacoste said the scope of the review involved the council members’ “personal evaluation of the town manager in mind or in hand and we have a discussion of our findings/observations/experiences.”

He said that department heads were not interviewed and that the closed session review lasted about an hour and-a-half.