REVERE – Recently a couple of job positions with the City of Revere have been drawing applicants from out of town and it has one city councillor questioning the residency ordinance.
The most recent example comes from the library where a junior library position drew a finalist from Malden. As is protocol, the selection was forwarded to the city council for approval, but was put on hold.
“We consistently offer exceptions to the rule,” said Ward 4 Councillor Stephen Reardon.
According to the city’s municipal code a residency restriction was put in place in 2002 under the Mayor Tom Ambrosino administration. Members of the police and fire department hired after 2002 have to live in Revere within nine months of being hired. The superintendent of schools and teachers are exempt, but municipal employees such as those in the senior center, city hall, parks, library and department of public works must reside in Revere.
“I don’t want us to be limited,” Reardon said. “I understand giving preference to Revere residents to a certain extent but when it comes to executive or professional positions we want to make sure we get the best people.”
Waivers were granted to a woman from Watertown for the shift supervisor/telecommunicator position within the City of Revere Metro North Regional Emergency Communications Center in the Revere Police Department. Another waiver was granted for an economic development position.
Several of the approved licensed drain layers to be used in Revere are also from out of town. Several of the constables, who often serve legal papers to residents, also live out of town. The head of the DPW lives in North Reading. The building inspector lives in Winchester. One Conservation Commission member lives in Saugus and a member of the Cultural Council lives in Nahant.
Reardon said he wants the best services for the city and doesn’t want to see a better person denied a job just because they don’t live in Revere. Reardon’s own family had to deal with the ordinance directly when his brother went for the police chief position but lived in Lynnfield. Reardon said of lot of police officers like to live out-of-town to avoid repercussions.
Mayor Dan Rizzo said often times when someone asks for a residency waiver they are being hired for a certain skill set that is hard to find.
“Of course, whenever I can hire Revere residents, I do. It is not only in my best interest but it is within the scope of the ordinance that I helped to create,” Rizzo said.