Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Status Quo Before The Storm

Alisa Brewer (left center) Jim Wald (right) at Monday Select Board meeting

With incumbents Alisa Brewer and Jim Wald running for reelection to the highest elected position the town has to offer, one-fifth of a mayor, the 5 member Select Board will maintain its steady if not staid course.

No small feat after the tragic sudden death of Town Manager John Musante.



Because there are two Select Board seats open that means voters get to vote for two candidates.  And since Mr. Wald and SB Chair Brewer have worked side-by-side together over the past six years it's a pretty safe bet who they will each tell their friends to support with that second vote.

If Alisa has 1,500 voters who go to the polls specifically to support her and Mr. Wald also has 1,500 to specifically support him but each supporter casts their second vote properly then both candidates end up with 3,000 votes.



Makes it kind of hard for an independent lone wolf candidate to rack up a victory, even when second place counts as winning.

In fact, as often is the case with Select Board recently, there may not even be a contest other than the two guaranteed winners.  And normally that would translate to an all too typical pathetic local voter turnout, which every now and then barely manages to break 10%.

But not this time -- not by a long shot.  With the Charter change question on the ballot -- bringing with it the glorious opportunity to terminate tedious Town Meeting -- the voter turnout will easily surpass 30%.

The 9 member Charter Commission should be able to produce a new and improved blueprint for better local government (Anything But Town Meeting)  in time for the 2017 election.

And in the meantime, Alisa Brewer and Jim Wald will do a fine job keeping those Select Board seats warm.


17 comments:

Anonymous said...

Just remember, only weak people need strong leaders.

Anonymous said...

A storm for what reason? Amherst is the best college town in America, fiscally solvent, vibrant, filled with shops, has the best Merry Maple, is beautiful and …….the problem is?

Anonymous said...

" bringing with it the glorious opportunity to terminate tedious Town Meeting"

But this is just about studying the best form of government, wink, wink. Please remember that's the official cover story.

Anonymous said...

"Fiscally solvent" really?? Only if you consider paying double taxes solvent. The parks look like crap. The streets are covered with garbage. The town continues to acquire open space that is desperately needed for development. Absentee landlords preside over increasing student slums. Town meeting fiddles while Rome burns...

Anonymous said...

Shops? Where? What can you buy uptown except a meal out?

Anonymous said...

That is an idiotic comment. We must be very strong as a people then, because we elected a very weak leader in Mr. Obama. Twice.

Anonymous said...

The political correctness which permeates everything here.

Anonymous said...

Um, clothes, office supplies, artwork, jewelry, crafts, home goods, eyeglasses, flowers, antique furniture, books, games, martial arts lessons, toys, and hair cuts, to name a few. There's more but you get the idea.

Kevin said...

I'm sorry, that is total bs. The Select Board is only, and I repeat, only an "advisory board". The biggest thing they get to vote on is parking signs. You know who 'fiddles'? Town Meeting fiddles. By failing to pass "Smart Zoning" (MGL 43), Amherst has, to date been turned down on funding for Pine street, money we were assured we would get, to the tune of $5 million and counting. And it took two years longer and cost Amherst $4 million out of services. Town Meeting 1) has no fiduciary duty, 2) is free to use their elected position to influence a state-mandated board, and 3) is immune to conflict of interest and state ethics laws. If you want to point fingers, point them where they belong, at Amherst Town Meeting. Your elected and employed officials have done everything you asked them to. A small group of self-appointed cops has taken it upon itself to defeat everything put before them, without having a plan for what to do. Fiddle that, dude.

Anonymous said...

Kevin, 11:35 here, maybe you should read more carefully as I specifically blamed TM for all of the above. I have the utmost respect for the paid and upaid boards and the Select Board in particular. Despite your asshole comment, I agree with everything you say :)

Anonymous said...

Don't forget we also have a mine, a heap of other businesses, 3 great schools of higher ed, museums, the rail trail, organic farms, horse farms….etc. Yes, it's a reall hellhole here. It's a surprise homes are so expensive. Time to unseat the government.

Anonymous said...

Sorry, Kevin, but a mayor is not a king or queen. They can't just snap their fingers and change zoning.

Anonymous said...

Interesting, as soon as charter petition completed, the same people formerly trashing the town start to praise it! LOL go Vince. Watch Wentworth, Oldham, Fox, Weiss and the rest pile on about how great it is...

Anonymous said...

Are you the same Kevin that blew up WMUA? They still haven't recovered. Can't wait to see what you do to the town of Amherst.

Anonymous said...

It was all you idiots that pushed to shrink town meeting because people were running unopposed that created this mess.

Anonymous said...

People (Kevin that means you) should read the town charter to see what it actually says. It's not anything you make up out of your thoughts. The select board has specific powers, as does town meeting, the school committee, etc.

Granny has got a freshie! said...

"Um, clothes, office supplies, artwork, jewelry, crafts, home goods, eyeglasses, flowers, antique furniture, books, games, martial arts lessons, toys, and hair cuts, to name a few. There's more but you get the idea."


And a geriatric supply outlet?


I mean, when the diaper's fresh

hatred just plain smells better!


-Squeaky Squeaks


p.s. I know, I know, you're deaf as a doorpost.