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Wrentham loses town planner, veterans agent

Time:2018-11-10 16:32mesothelioma | mesothelioma lawyers Website Click:

Work agent director john charbonneau stephen langley

Wrentham town hall building

Wrentham Town Hall. (File photo.)

Mike George / Sun Chronicle staff/////

Wrentham loses town planner, veterans agent

Wrentham town hall building

Wrentham Town Hall. (File photo.)

Mike George / Sun Chronicle staff/////

WRENTHAM — The town is looking to fill two key positions now that the its planning director and veterans agent have left.

Director of Planning and Development John Charbonneau just became community planning director in Walpole, and Kenneth Oles has resigned as veterans services officer for health reasons.

Partly to spur economic development, Charbonneau became the town’s first director of planning and development in December 2015.

His departure is untimely given residents at the Nov. 19 fall town meeting are being asked to support a major rezoning of the center of town to encourage desired development.

Selectman Stephen Langley highlighted “all the good work of our former planner” for the proposed zoning changes.

Several large residential and some commercial developments have been built during Charbonneau’s tenure or are under way.

He was also instrumental in obtaining and-or implementing grants for studies of the downtown area and Route 1.

Charbonneau replaced Paige Duncan, who became planning director in Foxboro after nine years as town planner in Wrentham. He previously was head of planning in Raynham and worked at the Southeastern Regional Planning and Economic Development District office in Taunton.

An initial Oct. 26 deadline for applications for the position has been extended to Nov. 16.

“The applicant pool, it was minimal,” Town Administrator Kevin Sweet said. “We’re looking at trying to generate a little more interest.”

As for Oles, he assumed the veterans agent duties in March 2011.

“I am unable to complete my term of office due to my declining health from mesothelioma,” Oles wrote selectmen. “I have been very proud to serve the veterans of our town for almost seven years and regret that I cannot continue to do so.”

Selectmen are sending Oles a letter of appreciation.

“It’s unfortunate,” Chairman Joseph Botaish said. “He’s been a big part of the community.”

Oles served in the Navy for 21 years, retiring as a lieutenant. He replaced Rick Cross, who retired after 10 years in the part-time veterans agent post.

Oles has also been a teacher and has served as an official with Massachusetts Agriculture in the Classroom, which promotes student learning about farming and agriculture.

Stephen Peterson can be reached at 508-236-0377.




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