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Rindge’s planning director calls it quits

RINDGE — Planning Board members and the town’s latest planning director agreed to part ways last week.

Mark Smith had been the planning director since October. Before he arrived, the town had been without a planning director for 10 months after former director Matt Henry left.

Selectwoman and ex-officio member of the Planning Board Roberta Oeser said it was a mutual decision between the board and Smith that he leave.

The decision was made at Tuesday’s Planning Board meeting during Smith’s 90-day review. Rindge typically implements a 90-day review process for new hires, Oeser said.
“He agreed that he wasn’t living up to expectations basically, and there was just no sense in prolonging it,” Oeser said. “It just wasn’t a good match. We were hopeful, but we just had a discussion with him, and he felt the same way. It wasn’t his bag. And quite frankly, we don’t pay enough; that’s the long and the short of it.”
Smith was earning a little more than $50,000 a year, she said.

The Planning Board has not made a decision yet as to what to do next, she said.

“We’re taking a deep breath,” Oeser said.

The Planning Board will meet next on Feb. 4.

The town also lost its longtime town administrator, Carlotta Pini, in October after she was forced to resign by the selectmen.

Town officials have remained mum as to why she was forced to resign, but she left with a $35,000 severance package.

Pini had worked for the town for a total of 12 years, and as town administrator for the past seven. She was earning $71,000 a year.

mpierce@newstote.com


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