By Elizabeth F. McNamara
Town Manager Gayle Corrigan will unveil a new Community Services and Parks Department at the Town Council meeting Monday night, a move that will combine the current Senior and Human Services Department, the Parks and Recreation Department, and Substance Abuse Prevention Coordinator Bob Houghtaling into one unit.
The proposal needs the approval of the Town Council for appointments of two new staff members to fill what had been former Senior and Human Services Director Erin McAndrew’s job. McAndrew left for a job in North Kingstown last week.
While this is a consolidation, it will not save money, Corrigan said in a memo to the Town Council released Thursday.
“It is designed to improve services rather than to cut costs,” she wrote.
How much more, exactly, will be determined by what the Town Council decide in terms of salaries for the two new employees.
Cathy Bradley, the longtime director of parks and recreation, will oversee the expanded department. In some ways, everything old is new again – Bradley oversaw senior service offerings before the town established a separate department 14 years ago. Of course, since then, the town has expanded its senior service offerings considerably.
Below Bradley will be four positions: recreation manager (yet to be filled), senior services manager (Charlotte Markey, according to the agenda for Monday’s meeting (if approved by the Town Council), and community resource manager (Rachael-Lyn Longo, EGHS Class of 2011, also if approved), and a substance abuse coordinator (presumably Bob Houghtaling, who currently holds that position).
Editor’s Note: Information originally posted about the recreation manager was incorrect. East Greenwich News regrets the error.