Monday, February 21, 2011

Not so Public, Records

So according to today's venerable Daily Hampshire Gazette my Public Documents appeal for the redacted sentence (one of only two sentences covering the entire meeting) from the 8/30 Executive Session of the Amherst Select Board granting Town Manager Larry Shaffer a sudden retirement with four months pay as a going away present will be denied due to the "personal" nature of the discussion, which lasted a full hour and twenty minutes.

Oddly enough a state attorney updated me via email last week saying they were waiting to talk with the town attorney before making their decision; and I of course responded with a request for that final decision to also be sent to me via email. Apparently that request too was denied.

Since today is a federal holiday, safe bet I'll get the official letter (dated 2/15) tomorrow via good old fashioned snail mail. I guess the Post Office could use the business.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

It's very obvious that the SB was dissatisfied with Larry's management. He was asked to leave--the four months severance in exchange for his abrupt departure was his settlement. After years of insensitive, unprofessional and bullying behavior, the time had come.

LarryK4 said...

But why did the Select Board renew/extend--at his urging--Mr. Shaffer's contract for two years about six months before that? (Although, interestingly, Princess Stephanie did not support that vote).

I find it hard to believe it was just his routine "insensitive, unprofessional and bullying behavior" exhibited since Day One that SUDDENLY caused this.

No, there has to have been SOMETHING else...

Anonymous said...

Perhaps the "insensitive, unprofessional and bullying behavior" was just in your collective imaginations. Just perhaps the SB felt he did a good job and rewarded him on his way out the door when he decided to move to a new job.

LarryK4 said...

Okay fine. If that's the case then why HIDE fully one-half of the one hour-and-twenty-minute discussion minutes from that Executive Session?

And why did Mr. Shaffer publicly state he was retiring simply because he was getting too old for the rigors of a Town Manager position but then apply for those very same positions a few months later in two Michigan municipalities?

Anonymous said...

To anon #2: When he first "retired" he said he said publicly that he wanted to just enjoy the Amherst area and that he had always worked and was ready to retire.
Since then he applied for two jobs in Michigan near his new "significant other". He did not get either job he applied for there.
I have spoken to several employees who experienced or witnessed his bullying--it was definitely not imagined.

Anonymous said...

Spilled Milk.

Anonymous said...

No surprise as you had obviously for some reason interpreted the last AG email in a way that it was supportive of your position when all it said was "we'll get back to you."

LarryK4 said...

I did not misinterpret anything.

I only appeal Public Documents denials when I know I'm right (and if some public officials had their way almost nothing would be public).

Anonymous said...

If only Stephanie was the chair a year prior perhaps he would have been pushed out then....Shaffer hurt so many loyal employees..

LarryK4 said...

Yeah maybe, but my theory is she had more influence back when she was popular active blogger than she does now as a "high ranking" (volunteer) public official who never blogs.

And I truly hope Catherine Sanderson figures that out before she pulls the plug on her influential blog.

Anonymous said...

"I only appeal Public Documents denials when I know I'm right (and if some public officials had their way almost nothing would be public)."

Odd logic, considering their denial of your appeal meant that you were wrong.

LarryK4 said...

Well I guess I'm in good company because the venerable Daily Hampshire Gazette also filed an appeal (a much broader one than mine.)

Anonymous said...

Keep wiffing that football Charie Brown. Maybe next time.

LarryK4 said...

Yeah Nitwit, over the past 20 years my batting average on appeals has probably been better than the Daily Hampshire Gazette (they too stuck out on this one)