The Finance Committee appointing committee met this week to reappoint two standing members and to appoint one member to the position vacated by this ousted member. The good news is that Charlie failed in his effort to expel Laura Allen from the Finance Committee. With only Chairman Turner and Mary Brazie voting to not reappoint her. As expected Michael Bandzierz was unanimously reappointed.
Charlie vehemently denied that he tried to block Laura’s reappointment and in his denial, as much as admitted that what was said on the blog was true. Before the Q&A started he wanted to make it clear that he never actively solicited anyone to vote against me or Laura Allen. He said that he may have shared his opinion with people but never solicited anyone to vote against Laura. The reason I think the rumors were true is that Charlie alluded to things that were only known by someone who made the statements. He did however confirm that it was Tom Haas that he was talking to, which was the information quoted on the blog.
Now let’s look at the candidates who put their names up for appointment to the finance committee. First let me warn any potential public official that once they ask to be considered for any public position they open themselves up to public scrutiny and no longer have the right to demand privacy. This doesn’t mean that they don’t have a right to a private life; it simply means that they have to be more guarded about what they say and do publicly. That being said I am going to give you my take on what the candidates said.
Ed Scarbo is a retired police officer. He spent many years faithfully serving the town of Great Barrington. I would imagine that in the course of his duties he assisted Egremont on many occasions. He seems like a decent man and would make a good FC member. He is a very private person who doesn’t seem to have an active cyberspace profile. He stated clearly that he was against committee members sharing any public information with the public. He did not agree with or care for the person who was disseminating information on a certain blog. It almost seemed like he was quoting Charlie Flynn’s mushroom treatment rule book, but I think his attitude stemmed more from his being a police officer for so many years. As a police officer he sometimes had to see the worst side of people and by law had to keep it private. However, as a public official he has to understand that different rules apply. If he is appointed to the FC his public words and deeds may be posted on the blog he so despises.
Steve Rawlings had a long military career as a C-130 pilot. His father Jack, also a career military man, was a long time Egremont resident who I believe served on both the BoS and FC. He holds a degree in finance or business and is well qualified for the position. Steve opened up by saying that he wanted to join the FC because he thought it was a good stepping stone to running for selectman. His temperament makes him ideal for politics. He thinks long and hard before he speaks and shares his opinion with a degree of wit and humor. I’ve seen him at many of the meetings and he is very interested the town affairs being put in order. Although he and I don’t agree on everything we disagree civilly and he seems to be a fair and equitable man. From what I’ve seen and heard I think he would be a good fit as a FC member or a selectman. I hope he runs against Charlie Flynn next year for selectman. He has my vote and the ABC vote.
Tom Berkel could not be there so the committee put off deciding on the new appointments until the 10th in order to give Tom a chance to be interviewed. I won’t even talk about me because I have no chance of being reappointed. I don’t think I’ve forgotten anyone so these are our choices for filling the openings on the finance committee. I said openings because there is another position that unexpectedly opened between Monday and Wednesday.
Since the appointing committee met on Monday there was a resignation from the FC just before its meeting on Wednesday. Bob Climo suddenly resigned from the committee effective immediately. This means that Laura Allen will likely be the member to replace him on the appointing committee. Bob served the finance committee well for the short time he was there. His ideas were sound and well reasoned. He decided to leave before the final choice was made for the committee in order to not require another appointing committee; a testimony to his wisdom. He cited increased responsibilities at his job and needing to spend more time with his family. His portion will be missed and I think he deserves many thanks from the town.
After the appointing committee adjourned it was time for the BoS meeting. However, I’ll have to cover that in another post. The most interesting thing that happened was that Bruce Turner was hired as the town accountant. So until next time have a great summer