Baddeck's interim clerk trying to get handle on finances

·2 min read
Veteran municipal administrator Maris Freimanis says he needs more time to get a handle on the village of Baddeck's finances before he can address long-term viability. (Submitted by Maris Freimanis - image credit)
Veteran municipal administrator Maris Freimanis says he needs more time to get a handle on the village of Baddeck's finances before he can address long-term viability. (Submitted by Maris Freimanis - image credit)

The interim clerk for the village of Baddeck, N.S., says his top priority is getting a handle on the books.

Veteran municipal administrator Maris Freimanis was brought in last Tuesday after former clerk Megan Cooper was let go.

No one from the village office will say why that happened, and Freimanis said he cannot comment on a personnel matter.

But he has been at the helm for a week and still cannot say what the current budget looks like.

"Regrettably, I can't. Not today," Freimanis said. "Right now I just don't have that information readily available to me, but I'm working on it."

Bill concerns

Freimanis said residents have expressed concerns over tax and water utility bills and his first priority is to get those straightened out.

"I'm just going through the files at the moment," he said. "I'm trying to understand the situation here and retrieve as much information and gain as much knowledge about the village as I can, and then I'll be able to comment further on budget and finances."

Baddeck's village commission had been considering dissolution in July 2020, after the village was described as "one disaster away" from not being able to pay its bills.

But by November, things were looking better, at least on paper, and Cooper was talking about ways to grow village revenue.

Freimanis said after he gets a handle on revenues and gets invoices paid, the village will be determining its long-term viability.

Update coming

The village has a population of about 800 and it has four full-time employees and one contract worker.

"We do have challenges and we're going to work through them over the next few months and then we'll see where the village goes from there," Freimanis said.

Freimanis said he will issue an update to the public and media soon and will also work on updating the village's website and Facebook pages.

He said the public deserves to know what's happening with the village operations.

MORE TOP STORIES

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting