Wednesday, August 15, 2007
Scene of the crime
Yeah, I sometimes feel like the saboteur operating behind enemy lines on a dark moonless night who just launched a mortar round into the middle of an ammunition dump. The secondary explosions are continuing… and as the Klingons would say, “Glorious!”
But, as usual, Select Board (former-Czar) Anne Awad doesn’t get it. But then she’s the one who two years ago on election night after her rout of non-candidate Dave Keenan cited the “transparency” of her regime and even had the audacity to brag about setting up an Open Meeting Law Seminar with the DA’s office for all town committee members and elected officials (you have to wonder if she paid attention that night).
Today’s Gazette editorial hammers the Select board yet again, reminding readers this is the THIRD time this Board has been found in violation of the Open Meeting Law, and also citing an instance of Public Documents Law transgression where former Town Manager Barry Del Castilho refused to release the names of semi-final candidates for the job of Conservation Director (mainly because he had pre-ordained Mr. Ziomek's appointment).
Of course the Gazette (since they did not file the complaints) forgot to mention the OTHER two recent documents cases where Supervisor of Public Records Alan Cote ordered the town to release lists they tenaciously wanted kept secret:
The roster of Cherry Hill Season Pass holders--mainly because half of them are not from and do not pay taxes to Amherst--and the list of citizens who applied for the Town Manager Search Committee, because the Select board didn’t want anyone to know they had stacked the deck with their appointments…and look who we ended up with.
So rather than take their medicine, the Select Board is squandering tax money assigning the town attorney the task of finding fault with the DA’s recent admonishment.
Anytime someone attends a public meeting and they sit at the same table with all the committee members then they are participating in that meeting, whether they speak or not. And as you can see from the photo, the table in that Town Hall meeting space dominates the room.
Next time town officials schedule a joint meeting possibly attracting spectators they should book the larger Town Room with plenty of seating in the peanut gallery (not to mention ACTV cameras) for folks who simply wish to observe.