March 29: Most important local election in the past 11 years
'Amherst For All' is coming under criticism for something they never did -- publicly call for Town Meeting termination -- from 'Amherst Town Meeting Works', who publicly whine about maintaining our antiquated form of government by begging a No vote on the March 29 ballot question concerning the formation of a new Charter Commission.
Of course this falls right into the same category of hypocrisy demonstrated by those candidates now running for the Charter Commission who refused to sign the initial petition that brought the question to the March 29 ballot in the first place.
At the very least it shows they do not have much confidence their side will triumph on the all important ballot question.
Even more hilarious is the new video from the undynamic hat duo, Mary Wentworth and Michael Burkhart, with their Pulitzer Prize investigative hatchet piece riddled with errors.
Because W.D. Cowls and Jones Properties donated a measly $200 each to Amherst For All, which was an organization with the stated goal of supporting a ballot question that simply allows voters the right to choose, is hardly a grand conspiracy.
I'm sure both companies gave many times over that this past year to local sports teams and social service agencies. And Cinda Jones granddaddy also had a daughter, so he did not split his empire between just two sons.
She is also not the "biggest property owner in Western Mass." Her multi-generational owned company, W.D. Cowls, Inc is. In fact they are the #1 property owner in the entire state, although the vast majority of the empire consists of undeveloped woodlands.
Note who two of the sponsors are (right column)
And if it was not for Barry Roberts buying the old College Drug Store in 1991 after a fire forced any redevelopment to include an elevator, that building would probably still be a downtown eyesore.
As well as the First National Bank building directly across the street that he purchased and renovated twenty years ago. A building that currently has a prime vacancy after TD Bank moved out, but still costs Barry a bundle in property taxes.
Eleven years ago Amherst Town Meeting Works raised almost $7,000 to defeat the Mayor/Council/Town Manager government that came out of Stanley Durnakowski's one man crusade to collect the thousands of signatures required.
Stan Durnakowski Amherst Bulletin column 2002
And Stanley had a prominent sign that was always by his side: "Time For Change: Sign This Petition For A Mayor For Amherst."
You can't get much more clear than that. Yet 3,000 people still chose to sign his petition.
Yes, Amherst For All was non-committal when it came to clearly saying it was time to terminate Town Meeting, but that's certainly not why 3,500 people still chose to sign their petition.
And now they have formed a second organization, Amherst For Change, that will probably get more forthright with messaging. At least I hope they do.
Now you know who NOT to vote for (see 9 above)
Here's who you vote for!