By Pat Jenkins
Eatonville Mayor Mike Schaub is waiting for the Town Council to decide what to do about his former position of town treasurer.
It’s up to the council to fill the vacant office or abolish it. Schaub, who was treasurer for six years before being elected mayor and taking that office Dec. 26, has said he supports keeping the treasurer position but will abide by the council’s decision.
“The council may have a different thought on the position,” said Schaub, who’s completing his first month as mayor.
Eatonville is the only municipality in Washington with an elected treasurer. Other towns and cities have administrators who manage their finances.
Two years ago, then-mayor Ray Harper proposed eliminating the treasurer position as a way to streamline the town’s government and cut some costs. The council rejected the idea.
The treasurer is paid $11,000 a year and shares financial oversight with the town clerk in a system of checks and balances that also includes the mayor and the council. Schaub has said the system works well and is in the process of getting the opinion of council members.
He noted the consensus may be different than in 2012, when the council as a whole preferred keeping a treasurer as a sort of watchdog for the public’s money. Since then, the council has changed three members. Only two members remain from 2012.
“I’m not sure what (the newer members’) position will be. I will provide them with my thoughts on the topic, along with the attributes I feel would be important” for whoever might replace him, Schaub said.
If the council wants to retain a treasurer, it would appoint a new one. No timeline has been set for when that could happen, but.”I know there will be more to come on this topic in the near future,” Schaub said.