Tuesday, April 30



An interesting point was made as the BoS were discussing the police dept budget. One of the reasons that this budget had ballooned is that it was anticipating an administrative chief; which means the chief would not do patrol duty. This would require a patrolman on duty with the chief. They called Chief Bucknell a working chief; which means that in addition to being a patrol officer 40+ hours per week she had to take care of all the administrative duties as well. This must be why people usually had to set an appointment with Chief Bucknell. With Officer Pilone I can usually just stop by the station and he can chat. I have to wonder if it’s worth an extra $50,000.00 so I can sit down at will and talk with the chief about what I wrote on my blog.

Charlie said that in the case of a working chief the administrative duties usually took a back seat to the duties of serving the people’s safety needs. Charlie may have just inadvertently revealed why the police dept was in such disorder. Perhaps this is why Chief Bucknell could rarely take time off and had to put in many unpaid hours of overtime. Now the BoS wants to fire the chief because she was a working chief. They also mentioned that the new chief would have to be a working chief as well. I guess in a few years we’ll be doing another ten thousand dollar report to find the house is still in disorder and we have to fire another chief.

By now you’ve heard that the BoS voted to hire a part time interim chief. I can’t recall the guys name and it really doesn’t matter. I guess this interim chief's main mission is to figure out how to get rid of Chief Bucknell without it looking like the BoS are trying to railroad her. They said this would take 3 to 6 months and cost about $750.00 a week for this part time position. Of course we will still be paying Chief Bucknell her full time salary while she is on administrative leave; and God only knows how much it will cost to settle any law suit.

This interim chief really has his work cut out for him. He has to take a report that could not show the Attorney General or the District Attorney any actionable offences against the chief, and find a way to use it to fire her. News flash BoS; it will always look like you’re trying to railroad the chief because you are railroading her. Have the guts to either fire her and take the consequences or swallow your pride bring her back. But don’t make the town spend any more money to support your foolishness.

It was unclear to me if we as citizens could stop this train wreck. The way the BoS was talking is that it’s a fait accompli and regardless of what happens at the special town meeting they think it’s a done deal. Although I don’t know how they will fund this fiasco if we vote it down. It seems that if this BoS wants to do something they don’t let anything get in their way. Maybe the only way to stop this train wreck is to throw this BoS off of the train.  


Sunday, April 28


Well it seems we are getting preoccupied with the chief issues as though this is the only issue that we will be voting on at the two upcoming town meetings. We can banter back and forth about the tools and equipment the officers need to protect them and the town. However, all this will be decided at the town meetings. We the people choose the budget items and we do have the power to reject any line item. We have several budgets to consider and the Chief, whoever that may be, will have to make do with whatever the town approves for the police dept. budget. If that becomes a problem then we can choose to not fund the entire department.
The BoS will be asking us to give them permission to spend $15,000.00-$30,000.00 to hire a new interim Chief to investigate the Chief that is on administrative leave. When this article comes up at the special town meeting we can simply vote it down. We need to tell the BoS that we aren’t going to spend any more money on their screw up. I can’t for the life of me understand why the BoS would want us to pay up to $30,000.00 to investigate a matter that can be investigated in an unbiased impartial manner for free. Perhaps the BoS doesn’t want a truly impartial investigation. Regardless, we the people do not have to fund stupidity.
We will be asked to approve $10,000.00 to do an operational audit on the water company. This is more than a 400% increase over last year’s water company audit budget. This operational audit will only tell us what the Finance committee has told us already. Because of one employee’s nonfeasance the town lost hundreds of thousands of dollars in tax revenue. We have an audit scheduled with Scanlon & Associates which will satisfy the state requirement, do we really need more?
          Without town approval the BoS asked the personnel director to work over the budgeted $6,000.00. In fact they are asking the town for another $2.800.00 to pay for hours that he worked which were not budgeted for. They will also ask that we increase the personnel director’s budget to $9,500.00 per year. When Charlie Flynn was pitching the Finance committee on this article and increase he made a gaffe. We all know a gaffe is when a politician accidentally tells the truth. Charlie said that we need to increase this budget item and pay the extra $2,800.00 for the following reason. “Ordinarily this job should be done by the BoS; but because the BoS did this job so poorly we needed to hire a personnel director”. As unbelievable as it sounds Charlie Flynn’s argument is that because the BoS couldn’t do its job we need to hire someone to do it for them. Maybe we should pay the personnel director from the BoS’s salary. Or perhaps we should just replace this BoS with people who can actually do the job.
          Then we have the water company articles. Not only are the water commissioners asking us to come up with $7,842.50 in addition to the $79,720.00 subsidy from last year, but at the annual town meeting they’ll be asking us to take over the entire $117,000.00 debt service. Do these people really think the citizens of Egremont are that stupid?
          We have a lot of issues to deal with at the two town meetings on the 7th of May; but the main objective is to get as many people out to the meetings as possible. There is strength in numbers. These meetings are too important to let apathy allow this small group of people who have been running this town to win. It’s time for the citizens of Egremont to step up and get involved. It’s time for the citizens of Egremont to make a stand. I hope to see you all at the two town meetings on May 7th at 6:00 pm and 7:00 pm at Mt. Everett HS; then the election on May 14th at the North Egremont Fire Station.

Sunday, April 21

Battle of the Budgets

Officer Pilone

In regard to your comment that we were lied to; I don’t think that we were lied to; as much as there are two different plans for the Egremont Police Dept. I was just looking over the two budgets that were submitted to the FC. It looks like your budget was $350,576.00 and Chief Bucknell's was 297,356.00. It seems to me that the Chiefs budget is only slightly over last year’s budget which is exactly what she stated. The documents will bear out this fact. Your plan on the other hand reflects quite a significant increase. I’m not saying there is anything wrong with that; I’m just saying that the plans are different and the cost of these plans reflect that difference.

It’s clear that you and Chief Bucknell have vastly different visions for the town of Egremont. However, these options have to be discussed with the people at the town meeting. Neither plan has to be approved by the voters. If the town doesn’t agree with the plan for the police dept, the people can choose to not fund the dept. entirely. The police do not work for Charlie Flynn or the BoS; they work for the people of the town of Egremont. Perhaps you should consider how your plan might change in the event that it is rejected by the town. If your plan is voted down at the ATM it could mean that the EPD goes unfunded regardless of any promises by any selectman.

I’m in the process of going through all the numbers so I can discuss them with the readers before the two town meetings. Of course I will give my take on these numbers, but the numbers will be based on the documents presented by you and Chief Bucknell. I do however plan on sending the raw figures in PDF form to all the readers so they can draw their own conclusions. When the people do come out to vote on these issues they will be well informed on the details. These two town meetings will be held on May 7, 2013 starting at 6:00 pm. at the Mt. Everett High School.

When we spoke at the station last week you mentioned that the hiring of an interim chief to investigate Chief Bucknell was unnecessary. You said there were independent outside agencies that could do the investigation at no cost to the town. Because this matter will be voted on at the special town meeting before the annual town meeting I would ask you to share this information with the readers. I thought your suggestion made a lot more sense than the BoS’s plan to spend up to $30,000.00 to replace you and hire a third chief. This fiasco has cost the town so much already I think the town would be very interested in knowing how this situation could be dealt with at little or no cost to the town.

Thursday, April 18



          Thank you for your respectful comment. I hope that if your other officers decide to post, even anonymously, that they will maintain the same decorum. I don’t disagree with your numbers. However, you have to understand that we were told that the hiring of the second police officer would not significantly increase the budget. By your own words it was sold as not negatively impacting the budget; this is a fact and a real truth. I was on the finance committee that voted for it and I remember the deliberations well.

Here’s my problem, Life’s a pitch and then they buy. We are sold one thing and then after we buy we are told that the terms of sale have changed. It’s called a bait and switch and it is illegal; at least in the private sector. For instance, we were told that if we allowed the water users to use the town’s credit to buy the water company, the taxpayers would not have to pay one thin dime. To date we have already burdened the taxpayers with over a half million in subsidies. To add insult to injury the taxpayers are now being asked to pay another 1.17 million to relieve the debt for the users. We were told that adding an extra officer would not significantly increase the police budget. Now we are being told that the budget will have to be increased by a significant amount. This is a fact and a real truth. Why you can’t understand this is beyond me.

You ask a good question with your bottom line which I would like to address. Perhaps the town should reconsider if we want a 24/7 police dept. This issue has come up in the past and the town voted yes. However, with the costs involved in maintaining a full time police force constantly ballooning the town may have to revisit this issue. Some people feel that a town this size does not need a full time police presence. I was in favor of the full time police force and the new station when it was sold at a reasonable price. However, the terms of the sale are changing and now I am on the fence. If the budget is going to increase too much then I might go with someone who suggested that we eliminate the police force and turn the new station into a community center. You see, anytime the terms and conditions of a sale are changed the agreement can be canceled.


Tuesday, April 16


          Well the finance committee, (FC), took a stand in regard to the police and water company budgets. Not only did they not vote to recommend these budgets; they level funded the police dept. budget and they actually reduced the water company, (WC) budget. My hat’s off the finance committee. I certainly hope the town votes to approve the FC’s recommendation. This is the only way to get the spending in check. This is a great example of how our system works. The finance committee does the research and votes to recommend specific actions to the townspeople. Then the citizens can make a better decision when they vote at the annual town meeting. I’ll get into the details of this move and the rationale behind it.

          As you know the water company has been a budgetary concern for a long time. After much discussion the finance committee decided to recommend that we cut the budget in very specific areas. The main area is in wages which caused an automatic cut in the insurance. The FC cannot tell the water commissioners how to spend the monies that are allocated for the WC. However, the voters can. Based on recommendations found in the Sullivan Report the FC voted to reduce one employee position to part time. It is assumed that this is Jack Muskrat’s position. By reducing this position to part time the job no longer requires the town to pay for insurance. The overall savings is in excess of $20,000.00. This will reduce the subsidy that the taxpayers have to pay. Jack’s semi/retirement has been discussed for several years. If the town votes the recommendations of the FC on this issue perhaps Jack’s semi/retirement may finally happen.

          The police dept. budget has ballooned to an outrageous level in the last few years. We were told that the hiring of two new officers would not significantly increase the budget. We were told that the part time officers were actually going to be working part time; instead of almost full time in some cases. I don’t know if this is the case but I do know that the acting chief presented a budget that was more than $50,000.00 above last year’s budget. This is where the FC drew the line. They recommended that the town vote to level fund the police budget and the department would have to adjust their spending to last year’s level. Many people commented that the FC needed to get a spine and I guess they listened. If the townspeople back the FC recommendations then the town will be well on its way to fiscal responsibility.

Remember, the selectmen and FC members can only recommend the town take certain action; we the people have to step up and make the decisions to put the town’s finances in order. We do this by showing up for the annual town meeting and voting. The only vote that doesn’t count is the vote that isn’t cast. I hope to see you at both the annual town meeting and the special town meeting. It all starts at 6:00 pm on the 7th of May 2013 at the Mt Everett High School. I know I’ll be there, will you?

Monday, April 15

Reality Check

When we look at what happened at the Boston Massacre today it gives us a reality check. I see the senseless violence going on in our world and it gives me pause. Our problems are few in comparison what is going on elsewhere. Let’s take a moment to pray, for not only those who were killed and injured, but the friends and family of the victims; who are also victims. I am truly saddened.

Saturday, April 13



          There are two town meetings on Tuesday May 7th. The first one is a Special Town Meeting at 6:00pm and has four articles in which the town has to approve a total of $35,642.50 above and beyond what we will vote on in the following town meeting. This warrant includes items that were not anticipated in last year’s budget. All the articles ask to spend from available funds so we don’t have to raise and appropriate new taxes to pay for them. However, we do have to decide if we should fund these special articles.

          I’m going to start with article 4 because it is just too insane. The BoS is asking that we spend $15,000.00 to hire a third Chief of Police. We have the chief, then we have the acting chief and now we need an interim chief. Please, STOP THE INSANITY. How many Chiefs do we need for 7 indians? We are now being asked to come up with $15,000.00 to fund an interim chief. But wait, this is only if the follow-up investigation after the Pomeroy investigation takes only three months. Chairman Turner said that we may have to allow for up to six months to investigate the real chief. It could end up costing a total of $30,000.00 just for the interim chief. The good news is that if we hire an interim chief to investigate real chief the acting chief will go back to being a regular officer. We can stop the insanity by voting this article down. If this does get voted down we can keep the acting chief and have the State Police or another agency do the investigation for little to nothing. This is why we all need to make it a priority to be at the special town meeting before the town meeting.

          Article 1 asks for $7,842.50 to pay for another water company deficit. This in addition to the subsidy we voted for last year at the town meeting. I guess it doesn’t matter whether you approve this article or not because if we vote it down the state will require us to pay it regardless. I only mention this to point out the fact that whatever the water company cannot pay from user fees will have to be covered by the town. Remember this when they ask us to take over the entire debt load of the water company in about a half an hour.

          Article 2 asks for $10,000.00 to pay for a detailed audit of the water company and police department accounts. Personally I think this is throwing good money after bad. The finance committee argued that we really need to do a forensic audit to get to the bottom of the issues that plague the town. This type of audit would cost well over $30,000.00. If we are going to do that we may as well go through all of the towns departments. We already know that the water company has lost hundreds of thousands of dollars in revenue and we will never recoup it. Do we really need to pay another auditing firm to tell us that? The Pomeroy report, which cost us $9,800.00, uncovered several accounts that the police department had and the details of these accounts. Do we want to pay for another audit there as well? We can stop the insanity; just say no.

          Article 3 asks us to approve $2,800.00 to pay wages to the personal director. You remember that Last year we capped this position at $6,000.00 and apparently what capping means is to only go over the cap by $2,800.00 or 47%. Granted there were a lot of unexpected personnel issues like the police dept. But be aware that this is the proverbial camel putting his nose into the tent. Now they want to increase the budget for the personnel director to $9,500.00. Where will it stop; more accurately, where will we stop it? I hope to see you at the special town meeting before the town meeting.


Thursday, April 11


Water Company Warrant Articles 1 OF 4

Well, now we’ve come full circle. If you recall this email/blog campaign started with Steve Agar telling me he had a plan to get the water company deficit under control. His plan was to ask the BoS to saddle all the towns taxpayers with the water company debt. Because it was revealed that there was so much money unaccounted for in the water company, the BoS had to say no. Following the money led to the discovery that Jack Muskrat was not billing properly. This failure to bill has cost the taxpayers well over two hundred thousand in the last four years alone. Now the water commissioners have a new plan. Two of the water commissioners, who also happen to be water users, started a citizen’s petition to saddle the whole town with the water company debt. This is the text of the article that was put on the warrant.

ARTICLE 3: To see if the Town will vote to have all of the taxpayers of the Town of Egremont pay the debt service for the Egremont Water Department, or to take any other action relative thereto.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I do not believe that these people have the audacity to ask us to pay for the entire debt of the water company after they have lost so much money. We are already responsible for any budget shortfall; now they want us to sign up for the entire debt. If we vote to take on that debt it guarantees Egremont taxpayers will be subsidizing the water company in the amount of $117,000.00 per year for the next ten years. It will also mean that this $117,000.00 will not be considered in the water company annual budget and make it appear as though the water company is profitable which it has never been.

Richard had a post on his blog regarding the original appeal from the desperate water users when they convinced the town to cosign the loan for the water company. [This is what we and others were told, again and again: “help your neighbors, i e water user, by simply allowing them to use the Town’s balance sheet to purchase this private water company and we, the users, will be responsible for its cost. Otherwise, we are likely to lose our water source”. Egremont’s non-water users reached out and helped their neighbors keep their water supply.] As they say, no good deed goes unpunished. After this promise of no cost to the taxpayer the water users now ask that we pay 1.17 million dollars. This after we have already subsidized the water company to the tune of a half million dollars.

Let’s look at who is subsidizing who. We are told that there are some users who are having trouble paying their water bill, and it’s true. According to Steve Agar there are about a dozen people who fall behind regularly. What we are not told is that many of the users are wealthy residents and second homeowners. Do these wealthy users really need to be subsidized? Yet this is exactly what we are being asked to do; subsidize water for the wealthy.  

Now let’s look at the taxpayers who are being asked to subsidize the water for the wealthy. We are told that we are a wealthy town, and this is true. There are many wealthy residents and second homeowners here. What we are not being told is that there are many taxpayers who are having trouble paying their taxes. I had a comment on my (BE A GOOD NEIGHBOR) article. This woman said it perfectly Many people who say they don't mind paying more aren't really good neighbors because they are thinking of their personal bank book. They aren't thinking of their elderly neighbors just barely making it. They aren't thinking of our young families who work three and four jobs to try to hold on to the American dream, or the single moms or those of us who make a third less than we did 10 years ago. To blindly assume that all the families and neighbors here have extra cash to give for something they will never use and were promised they would never have to pay for, is not being a good neighbor.” This economy is tough enough; do we really need to have the struggling taxpayers subsidizing the wealthy water users for the sake of a dozen people who have trouble paying? Am I the only one who sees something wrong here?

The bottom line is that we the people have to direct our elected officials to spend our tax dollars in a fair and equitable manner. We have already been saddled with this water company boondoggle once and we’ll be paying for it for years to come. We do not have to burden ourselves with even more debt for a water company that cannot sustain itself without taxpayer subsidies. This article needs to be defeated. Everyone needs to get out to the town meeting and vote some sense into these people. You must also motivate your friends and neighbors to come out and VOTE NO ON ARTICLE 3

Tuesday, April 9


          I’m usually a pretty humorous guy but what I heard last night at the selectman’s meeting gave me pause. Officer Pilone wanted the BoS to consider getting each of our officers a military assault rifle. And if that’s not enough he wanted to requisition a HUMMER. What’s next, an Egremont SWAT team? What on earth are we preparing for? We have gone from mace to tasers; now these guys want full scale assault equipment. Officer Pilone, I know you want to bring us into the 21st. century; but we more closely resemble Mayberry than Miami Dade, perhaps you should consider moving on to a big city. I was concerned when they asked for the tasers; now I’m downright afraid. I’m sorry, but we really have to ask ourselves if we are going too far. Maybe we should get each of the officers a set of ghillies as well. I don’t mind when individuals gear up for the end of world scenario; but do we as a town have to become survivalists? What on earth is happening to Egremont?

          Another thing that concerned me is that Officer Carlson had an incident where he had to use mace to subdue a man Right out in front of Mom’s. He said it took him 11 minutes to wrestle the man into submission. He used the situation as a shameless plug for tasers. I’m sure he felt the use of force was necessary and I would never question his judgment; but now I have to wonder if this will turn into another lawsuit against the town. When was the last time you remember any of our officers using mace? Say what you will about Chief Bucknell but she knew how to use her head to subdue criminals. I felt safe when Reena was in the Chief’s seat; I don’t feel safe now. I don’t know about you, but have I no confidence in our present police force. Reena had her finger on the pulse of the townspeople; sometimes literally. The new force has their finger on the trigger.

Speaking of the Chief, after spending $10,000.00 on the investigation stemming from officer Pilone’s litany of accusations against the Chief; we now have to cough up God knows how much more to actually investigate the allegations. Two weeks ago at the BoS meeting I asked what was going on with the investigation of the allegations against the Chief. Chairman Turner told me that there was no investigation and there were no allegations. I’m sorry; I was there. I also listened to the recording of that meeting. Officer Pilone rattled off over a dozen allegations and most of them were based on his feelings and perceptions. Charlie Flynn said he takes these charges seriously and that they warrant investigation. I’ve listened to Officer Pilone’s side of the story, but we haven’t been allowed to hear Chief Bucknell’s side. I guess we'll have to wait until the BoS releases the report to the public. Meanwhile the Chief is sequestered until her trial.

          The Chief told me that she would return to duty in a heartbeat if she were asked. She said it would be back to business as usual and she would put aside any hard feelings she may have against her accusers. I know it wouldn’t be easy but I believe she has the character to do it. She has always been the consummate professional. Right now she is afraid to step foot into town. The way she was treated last time she was here she is afraid she’ll be arrested. How can a couple of Johnny com lately big city police officers come in and run our Chief out of town while they’re still on probation. What is happening in this town? Everything is being turned upside down and we need to get it right. Hopefully we’ll start at the next town meeting.

Thursday, April 4

The Chickens Are Coming Home To Roost

          Well it was my first finance committee meeting as a common citizen. It was pretty much the same except that I had to force myself not to chant yea when the committee voiced a vote. Chairman Turner was there, perhaps to make sure I didn’t get out of line, as I’m sure he expected me to show up. Many things were discussed but the most interesting by far were the six new tasers for the new police department. Why Egremont needs six new tasers is a question that needs to and will be explored in a future article. However, the manner in which these tasers are being purchased is far more important to discuss right now. We were all warned that when the Board of Selectmen illegally removed a finance committee member it would weaken the finance committee. Well those chickens are already coming home to roost.

          I, speaking as a concerned citizen, asked Laura if the finance committee had any oversight of the account used to purchase the new tasers for the new police department. I believe she thought the finance committee did have oversight, but much to our surprise they do not. I thought the Finance Committee had oversight of all of the town’s expenditures; apparently not. The BoS are more confident in their power over the town since they took the legs out from under the Finance Committee. This simple act of removing an outspoken Finance Committee member gave the BoS all the confidence they needed to take control. Now they feel that they can do anything they want and the Finance committee will just step in line. Well, the chickens are coming home to roost.

Chairman Turner wasted no time exerting his newly usurped authority. When Laura was explaining why she thought the Finance committee did have oversight of the account Chairman Turner cut her off in mid sentence and said the Finance Committee had absolutely no say in any matter regarding this account. Basically it’s a done deal. We are getting the tasers whether anyone likes it or not. Chairman Turner said the BoS would graciously allow the Finance committee to look at the purchase; but they have no say in the matter. It sounds to me like Chairman Turner is saying that the Finance committee is just a rubber stamp for the BoS. Well, the chickens are coming home to roost.

However, all is not lost. While the BoS are getting intoxicated with their newly usurped power they fail to recognize one thing; we the people have the power to stop them in their tracks. You see my friends; because there are so few active citizens to answer to, the BoS have forgotten that the people have control. The people have to remind the  BoS that they serve at the pleasure of the citizens of Egremont. The April 1st trial brought out many people. These people were witnesses to the fact that the BoS do not care what they think. These people are waking up and smelling the coffee. These people are WE THE PEOPLE AND THE CHICKENS ARE ABOUT TO COME HOME TO ROOST.


Tuesday, April 2

Black Eye On Egremont


Monday April 2, 2013

          We are now at the rallying point. We had a lot of people out last night to witness the tragedy that happened at Egremont town hall. I want to thank all of you who could make it out, as this told the BoS that we are keeping an eye on them; albeit a black eye. Not that they care. Could the Board of Selectmen have told you any more clearly that they do not care what you the people think? The hubris in this administration is astounding. The disregard toward the people they serve never ceases to amaze me. When are we going to put these people in their place?

Charlie Flynn started out in is usual modus operandi, going into a bullying rage and verbally attacking my attorney. If you thought I was exaggerating about Charlie’s tirades you were a witness to just a hint of Charlie’s temper before the Town counsel reeled him in. It seemed that Charlie had Hans and Franz, the two new police officers, waiting at the door to haul Richard out until he figured out that he was my attorney. Then the discussion turned to who was paying for Richard’s services. I guess with what happened with trying to oust Chief Bucknell they had to wonder if they were opening up the town to yet another law suit.

Then we were treated to a repartee of legal speak with the two attorneys’ going at it. This went on for several minutes until the town’s attorney was reduced to monosyllablism. Apparently the youngster realized that he was way out of his league. All this was to no avail because the fix was in. Mary was so confident in the outcome she didn’t even bother to vote. She used the excuse that she had to recuse herself because she was a party. Does anyone really believe that conflict of interest matters to Mary?

Charlie actually tried to take credit for solving the water company billing problem and if you believe him then it only took him 15 years to solve it. Great job Charlie! I guess we would have to elect you for five more terms to solve the next problem. After Charlie made this ridiculous claim a voice from the crowd challenged his absurd notion. Well Charlie, I guess you can’t fool some of the people even some of the time. If you really knew that this was the problem then why did you allow the taxpayers to get robbed for so long? If you are going to take credit for someone else’s work Charlie, at least make it believable. Please don’t insult the intelligence of your friends and neighbors.

I won’t go into the merits of the case because frankly there were no merits; so let’s just get to the vote. Much to the disgust of the crowd Charlie called for vote long before anyone thought he made his case. There were boo’s, hisses and shouts of railroading. I too thought the merits were weak at best. The claim was that my comments opened the town to a lawsuit. If the BoS was so worried about a law suit then they would not have set up this kangaroo court. And they certainly would never have allowed the Chief to be deposed by these newly hired cops. I would have thought that Richard Allen telling them I could have grounds to sue the town would give them pause. No, this BoS is not worried about any law suit; The taxpayer can afford to pay for their indiscretions.

Michael Banzierz seemed eager to vote me off as he felt that my words reflected poorly on him. At least that was his rational. I think when he saw Charlie tear into me, at a past Finance Committee meeting, for over 30 minutes, he was traumatized. Charlie does have that effect on people. Perhaps that’s why so many people melt in his wrath. It was a tough vote for Tom Gage. It seemed to really burden him. However, in the end he too voted to remove. Mary, as I said, recused herself and in all fairness she would probably have been asked to do so anyway. Jon Beattie voted an emphatic NO. I guess he was the only one on the panel who understood that it was a free speech issue. Although he did not care for the content of my speech he respected my right to speak freely. Charlie, the accuser, jury and judge of this fiasco was quick to vote for removal, no surprise. Then the crowd went wild.

I went into this “hearing” thinking that I have a 50/50 shot of getting kicked off of the committee. I wanted to have it public so the people could see what type of government they are subject to. Now there can be little doubt that this Board of Selectmen will destroy anyone or anything to exercise their will; rather than the will of the citizens as expressed at the annual town meeting. This of course is my not so humble opinion, yours may differ from mine and that is ok; but don’t let anyone tell you that you cannot express it. Is there any doubt that we all need to get out to the next annual town meeting?