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New RMLD Manager Talks Storms with Selectmen

New RMLD Manager Coleen O'Brien met with the selectmen this week for the first time. O'Brien has been in the position for six weeks. 

O'Brien previously worked at the Danvers Municipal Light Plant as the Director of Engineering and Operations and later as the Electric Utility Director, but is pleased with her new position at RMLD. 

“It is an honor for me to serve you,” she said.

In her sixth week on the job, O'Brien is still learning a lot about the system, she said.

Selectman Steve O'Leary welcomed O'Brien and said that the town would be looking for "greater cooperation during storm events" and he recognizes that there are some resource issues. He understands that she has only been with RMLD for six weeks, but requested that she make a commitment to look at the issues.

O'Brien agreed and noted that RMLD wouldn't be able to dedicate trucks to the town's emergency response facility, but they do plan meet with the town administrator and police and fire chiefs before the storms to discuss their protocol and how they dispatch.

"I'll make sure the communication is better,” she said.

Selectman Mike Prisco said that the town would like to have a person dedicated solely to North Reading, meaning that when there is a storm the DPW director or public safety officer will be able to get in touch with one person who only handles one town. 

“I know there was a lot of discussion about that prior to your arrival," Prisco said.

Prisco asked if that was something that she planned to explore. O'Brien said that she would do her best to accommodate his request.

There is one person dedicated to serve North Reading right now, Prisco said, however he also handles another town. He was hoping to have a person that would handle North Reading issues 100 percent of the time.

O'Brien said that it was possible to have one person as a point of contact, but that dispatching has to be done in accordance to their emergency operating procedure.

"You're probably always going to have a number of engineers in charge of dispatching," she said.


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