WELLFLEET — Nearly three months after the abrupt dismissal of the town accountant, the town has filled the position. The new accountant, Heather Michaud, began work on Dec. 14, Town Administrator Maria Broadbent told the Independent on Tuesday.
Michaud has “already made great strides catching up on the town’s glaring accounting issues,” said Broadbent. According to the town administrator, there were discrepancies in the town’s balances: the ending balances from accounts in the old software from Business Management Systems did not match the beginning balances in the new accounting system, from Vadar. A temporary accountant, Lisa Souve, was brought in on Nov. 4, said Broadbent.
“Heather has been able to dig into issues with finance from day one,” Broadbent said. “She is a great asset for the town.”
Michaud was one of two applicants for the job. Her experience, along with “a great interview,” stood out, said Broadbent. Michaud was director of fiscal affairs for the Avon, Conn. Board of Education for five years and manager of accounting and systems for two years. Before that, she was the accountant for the Windham, Conn. Public Schools for two years. Broadbent said the Avon school budget was $61 million for fiscal 2020-2021. Wellfleet’s budget for fiscal 2021 is $22.3 million.
Michaud has a B.A. in business administration from Eastern Connecticut State University and is pursuing an M.S. in organizational leadership at Quinnipiac University. Her salary in Wellfleet is $95,000.
The former town accountant, Gene Ferrari Jr., was dismissed on the last day of his one-year contract, Sept. 22, 2020. Broadbent would not provide a reason for Ferrari’s dismissal. His salary was $100,000.
“We are in much better shape than we were a month ago,” said Broadbent.