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Scituate searching for a new town accountant

Posted by Jessica Bartlett  May 23, 2013 04:49 PM

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A little over a year after Scituate officials found someone to replace their longtime town accountant, officials will begin the process anew.

Meg Lamay, who started in the job in March 2012, came to Scituate from Hansen to succeed Mary Gallagher. Gallagher had left to become the finance director in Cohasset.

But Lamay departed on May 1 to become the town accountant in Carver, which is closer to her Halifax home. Since then, Scituate has started looking at applicants to fill the key department head seat.

“The same process we utilize for all our department heads,” said Scituate Town Administrator Patricia Vinchesi. “We advertise and accept resumes and interview folks at the panel and recommend them to the Board of Selectmen.”

In the interim, Vinchesi said the town has hired CPA Eric Kinsherf to work in the office two days a week to ensure that town expenditures are being properly accounted for.

Kinsherf is no stranger to the South Shore. In addition to providing accounting services to the Town Council in Braintree, he finished an interim town accountant job in Carver.

“He and Meg have transitioned nicely. It’s worked out well for us,” Vinchesi said.

Vinchesi said that during vacancies, the town always has an acting or interim department head. With accounting, which is such a specialized field, an outside firm always steps in to help the transition.

The time it takes to bring in another person also makes an interim person a necessity.

“Especially when recruiting someone from another town, they usually have to give a 30-day notice. The two-week notice is bygone,” Vinchesi said. “For someone to be able to give notice and start is at least a month, and that’s when you hire the person. If you back up the timetable, from advertising, getting resumes, and doing interviews, best case [scenario] is two months.”

With the transition into a new fiscal year on July 1, having someone on board to oversee town finances is even more important, Vinchesi said.

According to the town website, the Town Accountant is responsible for approving all bills and payrolls of the town, processing town bills, recording all cash received, and preparing monthly and yearly financial statements.

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