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Berlin executive secretary resigns

January 4, 2019 GMT

Catching council members by surprise, Berlin Borough Executive Secretary Tom Jones submitted his resignation Thursday night.

His last day on the job is Feb. 8.

“It has been my distinct honor and pleasure to serve as the Borough of Berlin Executive Borough Secretary since May 31, 2016,” he wrote in his resignation letter. “However, an excellent opportunity in the private business sector has recently become available to me.”

Jones wouldn’t say what his next job is or where, citing a courtesy to his new employer. Jones replaced former Executive Secretary Terry Metzgar about two and a half years ago.

In 2018 Jones received a salary of $48,450 with added compensation. In all, he said he made about $60,000. In 2019 he was slated to make $49,905 plus overtime.

He said he will help the new secretary transition to the job.

“I’ll do whatever council would like me to do in transition,” he said when asked if he will help after his last day.

Several council members expressed surprise and offered up kind words about the man.

Council President Charles Rhodes said that the news was a “bombshell” to him.

“He’ll be missed,” Rhodes said.

Councilman Tom Jones quickly interjected.

“Gravely missed,” the other Jones said. “Tom had a lot of finesse dealing with people.”

Mayor Joe Krause said he hopes the next secretary can learn local government and the borough’s electric system as quickly as Jones did.

“I hate to see him go,” Krause said.

Jones also read a letter to the council noting what he called “many remarkable accomplishments that I was able to make a significant contribution toward in such a very short time.”

His listed accomplishments included the borough’s generation project, revitalization efforts and the purchase of public works vehicles.

“I challenge you to be a progressive thinking, unified Council, with initiative, a vision and decision making that is best for all the Borough,” he concludes in the letter. “Do not ever let a vocal minority, or those with selfish special interests, or misguided motivations deter you.”

The council voted unanimously to accept the resignation and to advertise in the Daily American for a new executive secretary, a position that has many of the same duties as a borough manager. It was not clear Thursday night when the council plans to hire.