Thursday May 10, 2012

I am writing to encourage the voters of Dalton to re-elect Barbara Suriner to this office of town clerk May 14.

Barbara has held this position since 1987 and has handled her duties with the utmost professional skill and abilities, always having the town's best interests at heart. I was privileged to serve as her assistant for 19 years and to observe her excellent work ethic, her dedication, and her capable handling of the many and varied duties.

The office of town/city clerk is the hub of municipal government and also serves as the local arm of the secretary of state's office. Our town clerk also serves as the chief election official responsible for the conduct of all elections, the supervision of polling places and of election officers.

By the time all votes are tallied and all reports are made most election work days continue until 10 p.m. This is just one example of the extra time which is required of the town clerk. In fulfilling her duties, Mrs. Suriner has always gone above and beyond what is required of a town clerk. Her experience is invaluable.

Her opponent, Mr. Pitha, has no record of municipal experience or of participation in municipal affairs. Unfortu nately, he has also circulated some inaccurate information.

He has claimed that Mrs. Suriner also had no previous experience before becoming town clerk. The fact is that Barbara had worked as a certified assessor and on a part-time basis as an assistant to town clerk Robert Bartlett.


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She was also trained by his successor before being temporarily appointed to that position. At the next town election Barbara was elected as clerk.

Mr. Pitha has also claimed that there is a mandatory retirement at age of 70. This is incorrect. Elected officials are not subject to mandatory retirement laws.

We have two major elections scheduled for this fall, the September state primary and most importantly the presidential election. Our town needs a person who can conduct these elections properly and accurately so that there will be no legal problems facing the town. I have worked as the election warden for Mrs. Suriner. She is the right person to handle these duties.

JEAN GINGRAS

Dalton