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Emmitsburg town manager
 celebrates 10 years

James Rada
Emmitsburg Dispatch

(9/4) When Dave Haller became the Emmitsburg town manager 10 years ago, he wasn’t long on the job before the town had to secure a $40,000 loan just to make payroll.

“When Dave and I came to the town government, the town was not in the best financial situation,” said Mayor James Hoover.

But that was then. This is now.

As Haller celebrates 10 years at the helm of the town, he also can be proud of 10 years of budgets that have been able to reduce the town’s debt while still staying in the black.

“I’ve been able to apply a business practicality to the way the town runs that wasn’t there before,” Haller said.

Haller was originally a commissioner in 1998, beating out Hoover for the seat. However, after only a couple months in office, he moved from Emmitsburg and resigned his seat.

“My wife wanted our son to attend high school in Walkersville or Myersville,” Haller said.

So the Hallers moved to Walkersville. Then when Haller’s wife heard about the job opening for the town manager position, she told her husband. Haller applied, thinking it was a way he could still be involved with the town he had grown to love.

“I was thinking this would be a half-time job…surprise!” Haller said.

Since becoming a town employee, it seems like a lot of his work has centered around water and sewer issues, which Haller’s background in civil engineering and surveying helps him with.

He has helped secure funding for a new sewer plant, established new water and sewer fee schedules, made the water and sewer system into enterprise funds, helped negotiate the water contract with Mount St. Mary’s University for additional water usage, established the tap fee schedule, worked to get the National Fire Academy to pay tap fees for their campus expansion, worked to enhance the town water and sewer capacity and added land to the town watershed.

“It has had a lot to do with water and sewer because we really are a water and sewer company,” Haller said.

He said he has enjoyed the work because it is different everyday. He enjoys being able to help people and being able to plan for the town’s growth.

“When I do leave, I kinda want things to be on auto-pilot and have the next person not have to leap into the fire,” Haller said.

Hoover, who got his own start in politics with Haller’s resignation, said, “Although he and I do not always agree on everything, I do appreciate Dave’s diligence on a project. He’s thorough and thinks through long-term implications.”

The two things Haller hopes to accomplish in the future are to bring additional water capacity online for the town and to get the town’s comprehensive plan approved.

Read other news stories related to the Emmitsburg Town Government