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Timothy Plante named Springfield's CAFO

Date: 6/13/2013

By Chris Maza

SPRINGFIELD — Mayor Domenic Sarno celebrated a "special moment" at City Hall on June 6 when announced the appointment of Timothy Plante as the city's chief administrative and financial officer (CAFO).

Timothy Plante, who had been serving as acting CAFO since Lee Erdmann announced his resignation in December, 2012, was introduced as CAFO in front of the city's department heads, who gave him a standing ovation.

"That's the last standing ovation you'll ever receive," Sarno joked.

Steven Bradley, vice president for Government and Community Relations and Public Affairs for Baystate Health, chaired the committee that conducted the search for Erdmann's permanent replacement and said Plante was "by a long shot the strongest candidate."

"As the search went on, we realized that among the candidates was one of our own who had developed all of the tools and competencies necessary and had the trust of the mayor, the city council and the department heads," he said.

Plante was previously the director of finance for the city as well as acting chief financial officer for the Springfield City Schools.

Plante, who was joined by his wife, Katie Contant, and children Trevor and Alyssa, said he looked forward to continuing to move the city forward.

"I am excited about the opportunity to serve as CAFO because it is a perfect culmination of all my experience in both state and municipal government, which allows me to continue the work of helping run a community with assorted challenges and great possibility," he said. "In over six years of service to the city, we have overcome tremendous fiscal challenges and have put Springfield on the map for strong financial management."

Sarno said that during Plante's tenure with the city, which began in 2007, he "watched this young man grow with the city" and credited him with several accomplishments the city has enjoyed, including the rejuvenation of the city's bond rating from junk bond status to ratings in the A range and the continued recovery from "natural and man-made disasters," referring to the June 1, 2011 tornado and Nov. 23, 2012 gas explosion on Worthington Street.

He also recognized that under Plante, the Finance Department was awarded the Distinguished Budget Award from the Government Finance Officers Association for five consecutive years for its budget formation.

Plante assisted in the development of the fiscal year 2014 budget, which Sarno presented in May, touting the fact that it featured no layoffs.