MEREDITH — The board of selectmen have sent an advisory letter to the town library trustees asking for a meeting to discuss the library’s recent job reclassification and salary increase for a library employee.
The library trustees have full authority to make such a move with the library staff, said Selectman Miller Lovett, but the town has had a policy for the past several years not allowing changes to job classifications and salaries for town employees, in part due to the bad economy.
“We recognize that the library trustees have the right to run their budget the way they want to, and they had a right to do what they did with this employee, we respect what they have done,” Lovett said.
“We just sent them a letter asking to sit down and talk about it, because it is contrary to town policy.”
The trustees are seeking more information about the town’s request and had no further comment, said Library Trustee chair Rhetta Colon.
The selectmen received a letter from the library trustees in May informing them that they had reclassified the job of a library employee who works with library technology, and that the employee’s salary had been raised, Lovett said.
Lovett said the selectmen know that the library trustees are not required to follow town policies even though the library staff members are technically town employees, and the board understands the reasons for the change in job classification and salary.
“They are independent, and they felt that the salary was not high enough for this position,” he said. “They said they had the money for it within their budget.”
At Monday night’s selectmen’s meeting, the board decided to send a letter to the library trustees advising them of town policy.
“We just want to discuss the town’s employee policy and make sure we all understand why we have this policy,” said Selectman Carla Horne.
Lovett said the selectmen just want to be accountable to other town employees who have not had raises in several years.
“I’m sure we’ll have a time in the future when we can go back to salary increases (for town employees) as we had before,” Lovett said.
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Dan Seufert may be reached at email@example.com.