Most meetings in Truro are remote. Go to Truro-ma.gov and click on the meeting you are interested in. The agenda includes instructions on how to join.
Thursday, Dec. 21
- School Committee, 4:30 p.m.
Town Manager Progress
The select board met on Dec. 12 for a midyear review of Town Manager Darrin Tangeman’s job performance. It was part of a strategy for moving forward after controversy erupted last summer over the renewal of Tangeman’s contract.
Tangeman and the board agreed on nine goals “to improve outreach and communications with the town.” The work plan stipulated that Tangeman provide “periodic public updates to the select board” on his progress.
Tangeman has conducted monthly coffees since summer; one was attended by more than 20 people, he said, adding that people asked questions about housing, the public works facility, and the departure of former Town Clerk Kaci Fullerton.
Tangeman also met with the Truro Part-Time Resident Taxpayers’ Association (TPRTA) board on Aug. 14 and Sept. 14 for discussions about “how the TPRTA membership can have a bigger voice and more participation in town decision making,” he wrote in his memo to the select board.
He has also set up two mentorships with “experienced, retired town managers”: Keith Bergman, Provincetown’s former town manager who is a Mass. Municipal Association senior mentor, and Kevin Paicos, former town manager of Hingham and Foxborough. Tangeman meets with them in alternating months.
The mentorships have been helpful, Tangeman said. “Although we see what we see in Truro, and we feel like this is the center of the world for us, they often say that they’ve seen many similar situations, and Truro isn’t as bad as you think, in terms of divisiveness,” Tangeman said. “They’re trying to help me and give me ideas and resources.”
“I’m very much encouraged about the direction that this has taken,” said board member Bob Weinstein. “I think something that dogs all of us is how to engage people,” he added.
“I feel like you’ve really been putting in the time, and I appreciate the outreach that you’ve been doing,” said Stephanie Rein. She suggested that feedback from town staff should be added to the work plan.
“I think this is a great start and obviously needs to continue,” said vice chair Sue Areson, the lone board member who voted against renewing Tangeman’s contract in June. Areson said both Tangeman and the select board should be working to “get to people in the community who are feeling distrustful of us, who are feeling not listened to for whatever reason.”
“I want to tip my hat to you that you have made a real effort here,” said chair Kristen Reed, who said townspeople had told her they’d noticed a difference in Tangeman’s work style. —Sophie Mann-Shafir