Ridgefield finance board chooses Rettger to fill empty seat

Assistant town treasurer Michael Rettger interviews in front of the Board of Finance on Tuesday, Dec. 10.

Assistant town treasurer Michael Rettger interviews in front of the Board of Finance on Tuesday, Dec. 10.

Stephen Coulter / Hearst

The finance board is whole again.

Assistant Town Treasurer Michael Rettger was voted to fill the seat left vacant by Board of Selectmen member Sean Connelly last month.

Rettger, who has also served on the town’s Pension Commission since January 2017, was nominated by the Democratic Town Committee.

He was one of five candidates to come forward and apply for the opening.

“We were impressed by the other four candidates’ resumes and that’s a testament to the talent that’s in this town,” said Board of Finance Chairman Dave Ulmer.

Rettger, a Ridgefield resident since 1992, told the board that he has a background in the insurance business.

“I was in the business for 31 years ... I ran budgets, financial reports — mostly in a managerial role,” he told the finance board Tuesday, Dec. 10.

He retired four years ago and was appointed as assistant town treasurer soon thereafter.

“The role at its core is a clerk job but Molly [McGeehin] has had me help out in other areas that interested me, so I’ve been doing a little bit more than just being a clerk,” Rettger said.

Finance board member Amy Freidenrich noted that the town would have to fill the now vacant assistant town treasurer position. She also said Rettger would have to leave the Pension Commission, which he agreed he would.

“We have the risk and audit committee coming in next week, so we’d love to have you around for that,” she said. “We want to make sure we’re doing everything we can to be whole.”

The four board members asked Rettger two questions before unanimously voting for his appointment.

“You’re aware of our schedule?” Freidenrich asked. “Things heat up in March and April. It’s mission critical that you’re free those two months.”

Rettger said his calendar was clear for budget season.

“What’s one thing you’d like to impact in Ridgefield, as a member of the Board of Finance?” asked new board member Karen Ogden.

Rettger said that there was three components to the budget he’d like to oversee.

“The budget has to be adequate, it has to be honest and it has to be transparent,” he said. “Those are the three dimensions I’d focus on from a budget oversight perspective.”

Freidenrich motioned to approve Rettger’s appointment and Ogden seconded the motion.

“Welcome aboard,” said Ulmer. “We’re meeting next Tuesday. We’ll have to have you sworn in by then.”

“I’ll get that taken care of as soon as possible,” Rettger said.