Conn. colleagues speak highly of Tieperman

TOLLAND, Conn. – Tim Tieperman will be missed, say his town government colleagues and Town Council members he worked closely with in building budgets and doing the other business of a municipal administrator.

Some colleagues praised Tieperman for fostering teamwork, shepherding economic growth, vigorously pursuing grants and overseeing an upgrade in technology.

They also characterized him as an even-tempered, likeable guy.

On Jan. 4, Tieperman will become Merrimack’s town manager, hired after a 10-month search. He’ll be paid $110,000 a year to work with town department heads in the delicate balance of maintaining a high quality of town services while keeping town spending in check as much as possible.

He will also be expected to help entice new businesses to Merrimack to help offset the tax burden on residents. That very issue was one of his successes in Tolland, said Town Council member Kathy Bach.

“I think Tim’s biggest challenge when he arrived in Tolland was to balance increasing revenue needs against the method of taxation in Connecticut, which is predominantly the personal property tax,” Bach said in an e-mail comment.

“To this end, he worked in earnest to develop our business park, a land makeup and location nightmare. Tim went after grants and tax incentives to relocate a large and prosperous business to the park.”

Another council member said Tieperman helped steer the course during a difficult time in Tolland.

“He’s been very helpful leading Tolland through an interesting seven years – the building of new schools, referendums, charter reforms, residential and economic growth,” said Town Council member Bryan Hurlburt.

Tieperman was particularly aggressive in tracking down grants that could help businesses, one of his Town Hall colleagues said.

“Tim is good at chasing down grant leads,” Beverly Bellody said. “I used to hate to open my e-mail, because he’d have another one.”

Although Bellody is Tolland’s director of human resources, a social services position, Tieperman noticed she is an adept grant-writer and called upon her to write grants for economic development.

It’s the kind of cross-training, and willingness to step in where needed, that Tieperman helped foster among town employees.

“Tim’s not a micro-manager. We’re all good employees and we all do our jobs,” said Linda Farmer, Tolland’s director of Planning and Community Development.

Bellody also noted Tieperman was a pleasure to work with, particularly with his “even temperament” and “good sense of humor.”

“We all do. We laugh,” Bellody said. “I think you have to have that in the workplace, especially when you deal with the community.”

Tieperman’s entire family will be missed in Tolland, Bach said. Tieperman and his wife, Betsy, have two daughters, ages 12 and 8.

“I have known Tim since he arrived in Tolland,” Bach said in an e-mail message. “His family attends our church, and Betsy and I have worked on Historical Society projects together.”