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North Adams Appoints New City Clerk
By Tammy Daniels, iBerkshires Staff
12:51PM / Wednesday, May 24, 2023
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Tina Leonesio was sworn in on Tuesday as the North Adams city clerk. She has been assistant clerk since September and acting clerk the last few weeks.

Leonesio, the fourth clerk in the last 18 months, takes her place in the clerk's seat next to the council president.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The City Council is hoping the fourth one's a charm.
Tina Leonesio was sworn in on Tuesday as city clerk, the fourth person to hold the post in less than 18 months, after a unanimous vote by the City Council. 
Leonesio was hired last September as assistant clerk and has been acting clerk over the last several weeks since the departure of Joshua Vallieres.
"We had posted it and we kept it open until we actually started interviewing," said Council President Lisa Blackmer. "We had 19 applicants and I will say that one candidate stood out."
She had checked off every box in terms of criteria listed for the post, including municipal, management, administrative and public service, said Blackmer, and it was the recommendation of the search committee to appoint Leonesio to complete the three-year term expiring in 2025.
"In the process of reviewing all of the resumes, I completely agree with Councilor Blackmer's assessment that we had one candidate who met all of our criteria that we wanted to see for this position," said Councilor Ashley Shade, who had been a member of the search committee with Blackmer and Community Development Director Michael Nuvallie, who is also a member of the Board of Registrars. "But we did have several candidates who met many of the criteria but not quite all of them. And I would encourage them to apply when the assistant city clerk position opens up."
 The North Adams resident holds a bachelor's in psychology and master's certification in applied project management from Villanova University. She's worked in facilities management and the office of administration and finance at Masachusetts College of Liberal Arts, managing projects for contracting and manufacturing companies, and marketing and managing housing services. 
"Here we go with another new city clerk, just on the outset election season again. I'm sure it's going to be pretty challenging, but I have the fullest confidence," said Councilor Peter Oleskiewicz. 
The council has had a challenging time keeping a clerk since the departure of Marilyn Gomeau in 2019 after 15 years in the post. Her replacement, Deborah Pedercini, a longtime City Hall employee, left for another position after two years and her successor, Cathleen King, after about a year. In quick succession, two assistant clerks — Marcus Lyon and then Vallieres — were promoted. Lyon lasted months and Vallieres, less than a year. 
After taking the oath administered by Justice of the Peace Thomas Webb, Leonosio assured the councilors that she wasn't planning on going anywhere anytime soon. She later said she has found City Hall to be a wonderful place to work and "one of the best team environments that I have ever been in."
"I'm looking forward to the position, I am looking forward to putting my best foot forward and definitely working with everybody and succeeding," she said following the council meeting. "I know what I'm getting into as far as the work and everything. I'm not worried. I feel comfortable."
Mayor Jennifer Macksey presented the council with a $47,410,070 draft budget for fiscal 2024. This spending plan is up $2,873,335, or 6.45 percent, over this year.
The draft budget and a new classification and compensation plan were referred to the Finance Committee, which will begin meeting to discuss it next week.
City Councilor Keith Bona, chair of the Finance Committee, urged other councilors and those considering running for council to attend the meetings.
"This is an opportunity to definitely learn about the budget that we deal with," Bona said. "Try to attend and, also, the public because you get to hear what's going on with the budget."
Macksey said she looked "forward to having a discussion with other councilors who want to participate."
Shade asked if the Finance meetings could be broadcast or streamed; Councilors Marie T. Harpin and Jennifer Barbeau made the same request.
Bona said he would check with the IT department and Northern Berkshire Community Television to make it happen.
In other business:
A communication by Councilor Bryan Sapienza requested a study into improving the audio in the council meeting room, including if the microphones for NBCTC could be connected to a speaker system. Sapienza said he heard complaints from those in the gallery that it's often difficult to hear inside the former courtroom, especially if there are a lot of people present. 
The mayor said the IT Department has been looking into the acoustics of the room and that her office would collaborate on solutions. The council referred the issue to the mayor's office and NBCTC and amended to include a member of the IDEA Commission (as representing hearing impaired) at the suggestion of Councilor Michael Obasohan. 
Shade reminded the audience members that they could call a point of order to ask councilors to repeat themselves or to ask them to speak louder. 
 The council confirmed the appointment of Alyssa Sporbert to the IDEA Commission, to fill the unexpired term of Molly Graether to expire on Feb. 8, 2024.
 The council approved applications from Gregory Acevedo to drive a taxicab for RJ's Taxi and from Jeffrey Davis and April Pini to drive for OTT Taxi. 
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