Monthly Archives: March 2012

Billboards + Squabbling Again

Town Manager, Board of Selectmen and Board of Water and Sewer are squabbling. Whose fault is this?

If the town didn’t like the deal the negotiating teams finalized, it’s too late now to fix it to perfection. Citizens didn’t like the price guessing game of how much it would cost and who had to hook up to sewer, so the Kraft built, town owned estimated $7-10+ million value plant is getting flushed down the toilet. We’re not getting sign revenues and the good working relationship between the town and Kraft may have evaporated. One selectman said the town shouldn’t be in the advertising business so why did the town put out a new bid and try getting into the business? Why did the Kraft lawyer say “eminent domain” (what would compel town officials to think of taking something on Kraft surrounded land) as he was trying to read a statement for “Citizen’s input”? Is he a town citizen or does citizens input allow businesses and non-foxborough residents to speak? The agenda listed “topics not reasonably anticipated by the Chair 48 hours in advance of the meeting”. Paicos accused Harrington of knowing what the lawyer would be speaking about and Harrington accused Paicos of having said they could be part of it. Maybe Paicos didn’t fully read the letters sent to the town by Kraft and Harrington had no idea what the Kraft representatives were going to say. Paicos read part of a letter that said the Kraft representatives would be at the meeting- what else did the letter say- would it be reasonable to expect they would not say nothing? If the bid went out and no business bid and a new bid request had not been sent out yet, doesn’t that mean the bid process was closed and anyone who wanted to speak about it should be able to?

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7th of May

Harrington, Brue, Coppola and Slattery for Selectman (pick two)

Uncontested races

“Michael Laracy for board of assessors.

Kevin P. Weinfeld and Gordon Greene for planning board (two openings).

Frances Theby Spillane and Ellen Pillsbury for Boyden Library trustee (two openings).

Michael P. Stanton for board of water and sewer commissioners.

Paul A. Mullins for board of health.

Bruce Gardner and Maureen (Kate) Kominsky, school committee (two openings).

Candace Loewen, who is not an incumbent, took out papers to complete the two remaining years on the late Harold Donnelly’s term on the Foxboro housing authority.”

A Town “Divided”?

Searsport: A community divided by a tank

“Tanguay said that her group recently has been trying to get the word out about the municipal election and annual town meeting. People have been making phone calls, going door-to-door and canvassing the community.

‘People understand that even if they may decide in the end that the tank is a good thing, there’s a ton of concern,’ Tanguay said.

But Roz Elliott of DCP Midstream said that her company has been working hard to answer questions from residents and also to encourage voters to turn down the moratorium. Company canvassers also have been going door-to-door for the last couple of months to initiate a dialogue with residents.

‘We’ve seen a lot of people say, ‘oh, I get it,’’ Elliott said. ‘People genuinely want the opportunities, the property values. It really means the world to them. There’s a lot of hope out there.’

Voters will elect two selectmen, an RSU 20 director and nine members of the budget advisory committee in the municipal election that begins at 8 a.m. Tuesday, March 6, at the Searsport Public Safety Building.”

Sound familiar?

RFP Round II

Selectmen put out new bid for town counsel
“The new bid specs will no longer require applicants to have served as town counsel in at least five municipalities. That earlier bid specification technically made two of the six applying firms ineligible, and may have discouraged other firms from applying, selectmen said.

HICKEY: Start again on town counsel
“In a remarkable CYA (Cover Your Donkey) memorandum, Paicos put the board of selectmen on notice that they are ‘ignoring . . . Minimum Qualifications (as they) proceed to interview any or all candidate firms (2/23/12, Reporter).’

The RFP (Request for Funding Proposal) was written by Paicos, approved by selectmen and advertised. However, it appears either selectmen didn’t read all the details or town officials snuck through a couple of provisions that not all selectmen caught until too late.

But what of the RFP? Is it fatally flawed? In short, yes. The Paicos memo published in last week’s Reporter seems to give bad advice while actually giving them impetus to do the right thing. By urging selectmen to go ahead and make whatever decision they want, despite it looking “somewhat unusual to the ‘proposer community;’ (Town Counsel law firms) and may look somewhat odd to Foxborough’s citizens as well,” he is refreshingly blunt.

Columnist’s information on town counsel’s bill half-true