By Elizabeth F. McNamara
After interviewing two candidates for the temporary finance and administration consultant job, the Town Council Tuesday night voted 5-0 to hire Michael D’Amico (pictured above), an East Greenwich resident who served as director of administration for former Providence mayor Angel Tavares.
D’Amico will be paid $125 an hour for up to 60 days. Any extension would require a council vote. Council President Mark Schwager said he expected the town would keep D’Amico busy.
“He’s going to be doing school finance, town finance [and] recruitment of a town manager and a finance director. . . . We need to get that rolling because it takes time to recruit those positions,” Schwager said. “He also has to help us close out the ‘18 budget, analyze the ‘19 [budget] and beginning the discussions on ‘20. And we not submitted our annual report to the Auditor General. We’ve asked for an extension on that. I think we’ll have plenty to keep him busy.”
Schwager said D’Amico has taken himself out of the running for permanent town manager by accepting the consulting position, which was a provision of the job posting.
“No, I don’t want to be the town manager,” said D’Amico. “I think I can help analyze finances. I can help determine where the town really is financially. I think I can also give some suggestions for cost-saving ideas or avenues to pursue. I realize that between the town manager and the finance director, they’re very short staffed. They can use some help from someone who’s essentially had those jobs before.”
D’Amico most recently worked as chief operating officer for Carpionato Group. In the course of his career, D’Amico has worked for municipalities for more than 15 years. While his experience has been almost exclusively on the management side when it comes to union negotiations, D’Amico did represent the Providence Firefighters for a few weeks in 2016.
Schwager said that could be a good thing.
“He did work for three weeks for the firefighters to help resolve a contract impasse in Providence, but he’s worked at all other times of his union negotiations on the management side,” he said. “I think that also gives him a perspective on union contracts that’s an advantage for us.”
The Town Council moved quickly to hire a consultant. They put out a “request for qualifications” on Saturday, Dec. 1, the same day they dismissed former Town Manager Gayle Corrigan and named Public Works Director Joe Duarte to serve as acting town manager. The window for applications closed Friday, Dec. 14, at 3 p.m. The council met later that day to review four applications. Of the four, the council decided to interview two candidates. According to Schwager, in addition to D’Amico, they interviewed someone remotely. He declined to reveal that person’s name.
D’Amico will be at work Wednesday morning at Town Hall, said Schwager, who issued this press release about the action: Consultant to Acting Town Manager.
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