Letter: Rebecca Waterfall seeks to set record straight on the fire truck (UPDATED)

[Ed note: My Southborough accepts signed letters to the editor. Letters may be emailed to mysouthborough@gmail.com.]

Bill Boland is taking credit for things he did not do! At the recent Candidates Night Forum sponsored by the Southborough Public Library Trustees and in a campaign flier that he has been distributing to Southborough Town residents he touted his “accomplishments” as selectman. Unfortunately, Mr. Boland accepted credit for things he did not do.

More Specifically I would like to point out:
Mr. Boland says he “worked with Private Schools to secure almost $400,000.00 in donations for the ($1,1million) Fire Truck” that a Southborough Special Town Meeting approved in September 2009.

FACT: Mr. Boland is not responsible for the Town obtaining a badly needed Fire Ladder Truck. For many months prior to town meeting he openly opposed the purchase of the truck, discouraged the private schools donating to the truck (telling them it is unacceptable to specify when they wanted to contribute and that he and the BOS expected donations to made to the general fund where he could determine the distribution). He also discouraged the efforts of the two committees (I sat on both and chaired one) The Ladder Truck Committee whose purpose was to study the needs of the community and present them to the Board of Selectman (Mr. Sal Girolandio sat on this committee as BOS representative) and The Fire Ball Committee (I formed with an amazing group of Southborough residents and I could not have had the event without them) whose purpose was to create awareness of our community’s needs and have a fund raiser to bring the community together in support of this new apparatus.

Mr. Boland told the Ladder Truck Committee that we were not to make any presentations to the Private donors. Yet, we were asked by the donors to make the presentation and did so anyway. This helped one of the private donors choose to make a full commitment to the truck. It was not Mr. Boland’s efforts. As for the Fire Ball he never supported the event and only went to save face under the pressure of the community rallying and committing to the event. We had over 350 people attend including the State Representatives and we raised over $95k and donated over $80K to the truck once expenses were paid out.

I am sharing this information because I am tired of watching someone try to take credit for something they never supported and I will not sit back and watch him take claim for something he was determined to get tabled. He even removed the warrant article from the original town meeting and in a public selectman meeting blamed me personally for one of the private schools changing their donations from the general town fund to specify the Ladder Truck Fund (BTW they increased what they had currently been committing to the community by 4 times the amount).

SO Mr. Boland I would appreciate you not taking claim anymore for this project. There are many other deserving town residents (and a few others from out of town) who spent countless hours on devoting their time to helping our community, I being one of them.

Thank you
Rebecca Waterfall

Update 9:15 pm: It was brought to my attention that Rebecca Waterfall is Leo Bartolini Jr’s campaign manager. Bartolini is running against incumbent Bill Boland for a seat on the Board of Selectmen. I’m sharing that information here in the interest of transparency.

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Resident
10 years ago

Thank you Rebecca for setting the record straight. It is time for a change in this town and this certainly hits the nail on the head as to why. Bill Boland should be ashamed of himself for taking the credit for something you worked tirelessly on with the volunteers that YOU rallied together for this cause. How pitiful that he has nothing better to do with his time than act in such a manner. Many of the townspeople already know that this was something you rallied for and it is wonderful that with the help of this blog, many more will now know as well. Thank you Susan for posting this. I am glad to be a more informed resident because of this.

Alan
10 years ago

Rebecca, I have no idea why Mr Boland is taking credit for something he didn’t create. I can’t speak for him and would love to hear what he has to say. I would be surprised if we hear nothing from him in his defense on this issue. I do find myself in a bit of a odd position at this point as I will not be voting for the other canidate. It is my opinion that the other canidate does not have the exsperiance for the job, does not think the issues thru enough before making a decision and has a definet conflict of interest being from a family of builders in town. His quick claim that he recycles, laughs, then says he doesn’t is a example of ongoing behaivor.

Rebecca Waterfall
10 years ago

@resident thank you for your support. I truly feel strongly about the Ladder Truck and the success of The Fire Ball. The people I worked with were amazing and I learned a great deal. No one should hang ther hat on someone elses success.

@Alan I apprecaite your voice in the matter. And you are correct I am not sure Mr. Boland will reply.

Alan
10 years ago

Thank You for the 9:15 update Susan. Like I stated in my last entry, there is a pattern of behaivor with Mr Bartolini.

Lisa
10 years ago

Thank you Susan for the update, I am a little shocked to say the least that in the interest of fairness if you are going to make negative comments about a candidate and his supposed untruths that you should abide by the same principles that you preach and should have disclosed your position. If this is how the Bartolini campaign chooses to get votes through dirty politics then I can assure you that they can count on not receiving my vote and I am sure many others here in Southboro. It does not reflect very well on the character of their candidate and whether I want him making decisions for my family and representing our Town.

I can tell you as a voter that was not quite sure how she was going to vote, this turned the tide and my stomach.

Shubu Mukherjee
10 years ago

I find it highly ironic that Ms. Waterfall accuses Mr. Boland of deceit, yet she doesn’t shy away from it by not revealing her relationship to Mr. Bartolini’s campaign, which could be construed as deceit as well :-).

I have known Bill Boland for the past few years in his role as a Selectman. I don’t necessarily agree with him in all issues, but he is honest, outspoken, and a straight-shooter.

Anyways, I don’t have a vested interest in this. I don’t know much about Mr. Bartolini. I am sure Mr. Bartolini is a fine gentleman and would perhaps make a great Selectman. Nevertheless, I do know Bill Boland and I have seen him live in action many times. He truly cares about Southborough and I would hate to lose him as a Selectman.

Shubu Mukherjee

Jim
10 years ago

I agree with Alan after reading this clearly the townspeople are in a tough spot as either way we vote it seems we lose. Mr Bartolini I have never seen you at the transfer station other than to gain votes,So when is it you actually recycle?

Quick to judge and short on temper yes That’s Lee.

Clearly the conflict of interest is the Main problem here with this candidate.
With his family being builders and also connections to others builders in this town how is it he can be impartial? . He’d have to step down at every instance not a wise decision unless you have a secret agenda going on. maybe you’d like to share it with the rest of us when you carve up the town.

At some of the ZBA meetings that Mr. Bartolini is still a member of as another poster had made a similar comment that “He berated and attacked his fellow board members ” clearly shows a pattern,

If you know an older townie ask them what they think of Lee .. I’m sure you’ll get an earful

Do we really want someone like this to represent our town?

Rebecca Waterfall
10 years ago

@ Lisa and Alan and anyone else. I wrote a response to Ms. Fitzgerald when she asked me later if I was his campaign manger. She did not print it and advised me to comment myself.

Yes I can confirm I m Mr. Bartolini’s campaign manager. Be very clear that letter was not written from that stand point. If it were I would have been putting a positive twist for Mr. Bartolini and saying don’t vote for Mr. Boland. I steered clear from supporting either candidate and chose to post facts. It would be unacceptable for anyone to take claim for the ladder truck except the people who worked on getting it for our community.
I wrote that letter because I personally worked long and hard to get the ladder truck for the community. Mr. Boland was against it and has been falsely claiming he was the reason it happened and he supported it. People from my committee were shocked at his claims and asked if I could comment.
This is not an issue of dirty politics. Mr. Boland chose to take claim on his flier and during the candidate night that he supported the Ladder Truck and raised fund to get it. This is not true. There are public BOS meeting records demonstrating Mr. Boland was against the ladder truck and I have two committees who can back that.
The ladder truck is the result of this community coming together with the aid of two groups both of which I participated in. I will not have this spun for either candidate. The ladder truck success is one of my accomplishments.

KenG
10 years ago

I am not quite sure what is so deceitful about Ms. Waterfall’s post. The firetruck effort was over a year ago. It is more likely that she is running Mr. Bartolini’s campaign BECAUSE she, like many of us, is sick of the corrupt and dishonest behavior exhibited by Mr. Boland on many issues than that she is fabricating fully documentable claims to bolster Mr. Bartolini’s campaign. Mr. Boland has a history of shirking responsibility for mistakes while turning the spotlight on himself for successes that are not his own and well after the fact. Six years of Mr. Boland is more than enough. Mr. Bartolini may not be perfect but he has stepped up to serve this town and deserves a chance. There is a long, growing and, surprisingly, politically diverse list of residents who are coming together to support Mr. Bartolini – many for the same reason. They have had enough of Mr. Boland. I will take someone who will berate me in public anytime, over someone who will smile to my face and then stab me in the back when no one is looking. Not everything is what it appears on the surface. Our town has suffered some dark and embarrasing times recently and Mr. Bartolini was not on the BOS presiding over any of it. Mr. Boland was. Enough said.

Alan
10 years ago

Shame on Mr Bartolini if he knew about Rebecca Waterfall’s Statemant and not revealing her position with him. Shame on Mr Bartolini if he did know as this shows how much he will know what is going on around him when he is selectman. Everyone wants change, has anyone noticed that all the people that are giving him advice, helping with his campagne, holding signs and driving around with billboard pickup trucks are the same people that we already wanted change from?

JoJaMa
10 years ago

What bothers me is that Mr. Bartolini sat on the committee for town manager for close to a year and then never supported what his committee recommended. At the “last moment” he successfully “killed” months of work. He essentially left his committee members out to dry. And led a campaign against the whole committee at Town Meeting. It was pretty unsettling.

Al Hamilton
10 years ago
Reply to  JoJaMa

JoJaMa

The fact that one serves on a committee does not require that one supports the recommendations of that committee if the do not believe the recommendations are wise. I served on Advisory for a number of years and I can assure you that there were many votes that were not unanimous. There were also cases where a minority report was given at Town Meeting. That is democracy. We are not required to march lock step just because a majority votes for a particular course of action.

I also do not believe that Mr. Bartolini lead a movement to scuttle the proposal at the last minute. The issues that lead Town Meeting to pull back, loss of local control and the extent of the TM’s authority, were present and discussed at the several of the meetings I attended several months before Town Meeting. The committee voted in favor of a specific proposal that in my opinion did not fully address those issues and the result was that a sufficient number of Town Meeting members thought that the issue needed more time to percolate.

The fact is that this is a big and important change and the burden of “Getting It Right” falls on the advocates of that change. The Committee came close and we are indebted to them since I think they have laid a very solid foundation for what I hope will be a proposal that will be supported at the next meeting.

I was a vocal opponent and Mr. Bartolini never sought me out to coordinate opposition. I do not believe that there was any formally organized opposition as you suggest.

John Boiardi
10 years ago

The fire truck was not the only issue the town faced.

Consider the overall performance of Bill Boland on the BOS and Mr Bartolini on the ZBA.

My vote is for Bill.

P.S. talk to some former fireman about the need for a $1,000,000 fire truck in town.

Taylor Tyler
10 years ago

Get the legal bills, it’s all there in black and white. Thousands upon thousands of dollars of residents tax money spent on their foolish acts. Pizzagate, spending money to bully the editor of this blog for a name because of a comment, protecting a cop who released prisoners– which will create legal bills for many years to come. Wake up, you can never say you were not informed.

Mark Ford
10 years ago
Reply to  Taylor Tyler

This is at least the second time you’ve posted on the legal bills revealing something. If you’re in possession of facts, please let us know. I’m not doing that research, and I doubt anything in there would surprise me anyhow. Call me cynical…

bob a
10 years ago

Bill Boland has the interests of the town first on every issue.

Mr Bartolini is a fine person but ask yourself how many times he would have to recuse himself for a conflict of interest.

We needed a ladder truck? Go over the fire logs for the last two years and show where we needed a ladder truck. Marlboro has a ladder truck 5 minutes away that we could have paid them for every call.

We could have used the monies for additional police and fire staffing – raises for our great town employees etc..

Ms Waterfall’s lack of disclosure as Mr Bartolini’s campaign manager speaks for itself.

Good luck to both candidates.

A resident
10 years ago

I do not know Mr. Bartolini or Mr. Boland. All I know is what I read here and in the Villager and I was having a hard time deciding between the two candidates. After this attempt at subterfuge by Mr. Bartolini’s campaign manager, I now know that I will be voting for Mr. Boland.

Are the facts as she stated correct? I don’t know. But I do know that she left out the most important fact and that was her connection to the campaign. This omission does make me wonder about whether the rest of the story is complete or if there were other important facts omitted. As Mr. Bartolini’s campaign manager, she has a strong interest in slanting the story to the benefit of her candidate. In my mind, this casts doubt on the entire letter.

Just Curious
10 years ago

Anybody know who was Sal Giorlandino’s campaign manager for his unsuccessful re-election last year?

Matthew
10 years ago

Those who have the time or the interest are the ones who step up to lead. Bartolini has time but when I saw him at the dump the other day he was yelling at someone on the phone and walked far away so I wouldn’t hear him. He was working and trying to campaign so what’s the big deal? Maybe I wouldn’t draw conclusions if he could ever be trusted to be impartial. Too many Bartolini signs us in front of vacant lots in town that he owns and knocked down the houses to save paying the taxes on the buildings. Can’t wait to see what charm he adds to the villages in town with the help of the ZBA and now the BOS that he wants in his back pocket.

Boland may not be a saint, but who is? Douglas Adams said, and I paraphrase, “No one who is capable of winning an election should ever be allowed to serve”.
Boland may be the lesser of two evils and the devil we know but he would certainly be on notice if he does win because it will only be by the slimmest of margins.

Al Hamilton
10 years ago

Ms. Waterfall’s decision to oppose Mr. Boland based on his position and actions with respect to the fire truck is a perfectly valid reason to oppose someone’s reelection. For the record I was highly skeptical that the purchase of the “Quint” was the highest and best use of these funds but others saw the issue differently.

I see a lot of people posting here without revealing their identities. When it comes to a local election I think they should stand and be counted not take cheap shots from the side lines. I usually apply the rule that in a case like this if a person is not willing to identify themselves I treat it as if the post was put there by the candidate themselves.

Let’s remember have 2 decent human beings who care about our community trying for a single slot on the BOS. This is not a choice between the Messiah and Satan. I am supporting Mr. Bartolini because I think we need a clean break from the micro managing boards of the past and he has committed to delegating real responsibility to the TA and making that delegation work.

Kelly Roney
10 years ago
Reply to  Al Hamilton

Let’s remember have 2 decent human beings who care about our community trying for a single slot on the BOS.

Amen, Al.

Mark Ford
10 years ago

Sorry, Rebecca… but lack of disclosure gives the appearance of impropriety, whatever your intentions were.

Rebecca waterfall
10 years ago

While I appreciate a good debate and people critique wether or not I disclosed supporting Mr. Bartolini I find it interesting that most of you had nothing to say until it was posted I support Mr. Bartolini. The fact remains Mr. Boland is trying to take credit for something that was a positive experience for most people in this community when he really did not support any of it. Funny how he has not made a comment defending himself.

Mark Ford
10 years ago

Rebecca,

I posted when I read the blog this morning. I also have not said whom I support (still not sure)…

btw, thank you so much for all your hard work on the quint. I for one am glad we have it on board.

Barb Black
10 years ago

I’m a “newcomer” in this town (only lived here since 1981), and am slowly learning how toxic the politics can be. Sadly, it is now becoming quite clear that “stove pipe” commitees and conflicts of interest are standard operating procedure, and fighting the “establishment” is something most Southboro residents, with their very busy lives do not have the time nor the energy to pursue (guilty as charged). I have also heard that people who genuinely want to make changes have been bullied out of their positions. I do love living here, and hope to be able to remain in this town for the rest of my productive life (if the sizeable annual tax hikes don’t drive me out first). I regret that there are not better choices in this race, but I can not in good conscience vote for someone whose style is to belittle, intimidate and steamroll over anyone who holds an opposing position.

Mark Ford
10 years ago
Reply to  Barb Black

I don’t know to which candidate you refer…yikes!

Elder
10 years ago

Ms. Waterfall reflects the way in which the old guard continues to operate. Throw as much mud as they can and hope upon hope no one knows the real story.

They put forth a candidate who does not have even the minimum ability to analyze an issue and who will refocus on alienating people and fight with members. He is a puppet of the past and the town’s people need to wake up or be prepared for a return of the problems of the past.

Elder
10 years ago

Just Curious, Ms. Waterfall was also the campaign manager for Mr. Giolandio.

Frank Crowell
10 years ago
Reply to  Elder

Thank you for this tidbit – it is all I needed to know.

Rebecca Waterfall
10 years ago
Reply to  Frank Crowell

Better check your sources. I was not Mr. Gioralandio’s manager.

KenG
10 years ago

I believe it was John Leed.

susan
10 years ago
Reply to  Elder

Folks, I try not to interject myself into these conversations, but for the sake of keeping us on topic, I’ve decided not to approve any more comments about what role Rebecca Waterfall had in a campaign that took place two years ago. It’s not Ms. Waterfall who is running for election. Let’s focus on the candidates, please.

Leo Bartolini Jr
10 years ago

In all the years I’ve been on town boards, I’ve only stepped down on four occasions and all were a courtesy to the board. Three occurrences were because the applicant was a family member and once was for an abutter applicant. Under the State ethics commission rules and regulations, I was not required to do so. To my knowledge it would be unlikely that there would be a significant enough reason where I would need to step down if I were a Selectman.

I was questioned at Candidate’s Night about my trash and I commented that I don’t recycle but I want to clarify what I do with my trash. I do have a Southborough Transfer Station sticker but I seldom use the Transfer Station. However, my trash (both business and personal) is picked up by an independent hauler (Harvey’s) which I pay dearly for. Harvey’s is one of the largest green recycling plants in New England.

Publius
10 years ago

Bill seems to be doing a pretty good job. And Lee doesn’t sound like the right person to be on the BOS.

Al Hamilton
10 years ago
Reply to  Publius

Publicus, Elder, JoJaMa, Matthew, A Resident, Just Curious, bob a, Alan, KenG, Jim, & Lisa

Why should the readers of this blog pay any attention to your posts on the suitability of either candidate when you hide in the shadows of anonymity taking cheap shots at those that have offered us their services?

Do you even live in Town? Are you all the same person? Are you working for the election of the candidate you are not trashing? If you are shouldn’t you be revealing that. You have pilloried Ms. Waterfall, perhaps with some cause, for her lack of disclosure but you refuse to even disclose who you are. Seems like a pretty big double standard to me. I wish I had an ignore button.

SB Resident
10 years ago
Reply to  Al Hamilton

Names are meaningless on the internet!!!! Are you even Al Hamilton?!? The only reason to want toknow names is so you can secretly hate on people who don’t agree with you if the opportunity arises.
– SB Resident

John Butler
10 years ago
Reply to  SB Resident

Your screaming punctuation will not succeed in demoting a real community into “the internet”. Although, as I have noted here, I support absolutely the right of people to post anonymously, SB Resident, you cannot have thought very much about this post.

I say that because here is the trivial answer to your “?!?”. Al reads this. If someone impersonated him he would protest to the blog owner and it would come down. If necessary she would call him on his phone, recognize his voice, and take the fake down. “Hi, Al. OK I’m sorry, I’ve never had that happen. I’ll take it down.” Fortunately, this is our real world, facilitated by the internet, not an internet-world. We know and recognize, by voice and by face, our neighbors among whom we live. We count that as a good thing.

In a larger sense when Al appears at a public meeting and I have been reading what Al, or others I recognize, have been posting here, I have a richer sense of the public dialog, than if Al posted anonymously. My preference for signed postings, as opposed to anonymous, stems from that greater richness in the public dialog, the one that doesn’t tempt people to suppose that this is “just the internet” but to remember that this is our Town, that we write to and for our neighbors.

Al Hamilton
10 years ago
Reply to  SB Resident

There is no need for anyone to try and post as me, I am more than capable of embarrassing myself.

Publius
10 years ago

Anonymity at times promototes the free flow of ideas and opinion. Pseudonyms have been used in the media n this country since the founding fathers and publication of the Federalist papers. The question remains isn’t temperment and important qualification for the job ? Will brashness get things accomplished ?

Al Hamilton
10 years ago
Reply to  Publius

Anonymity might be a reasonable thing if the King was after your head or if we were debating the proper role, structure or function of Government as in the Federalist Papers where our words can stand for themselves but this is not the case.

In this case you chose to endorse a one candidate over another in a pretty much fact free way. And who are you? Nobody as near as I can tell.

I don’t question your or others right to hide in the shadows I just am suggesting that your opinions unsupported with the weight of evidence should carry no weight in this matter.

John Boiardi
10 years ago
Reply to  Publius

Pseudonyms may have been used for years in the media but the orthonym was usually known. Do you really believe that you can not freely express your thoughts if you use your real name?

John S
10 years ago

Why is it that developers, real estate related people and lawyers always run for these town positions?

They see it as a means to influence how the town decides on issue vital to their own business.

One area that not many people notice is the ZBA – The Zoning Board of Appeals sounds like something “appealish” (and not so important) to people who may not know what it does (include me in that group, till I knew better).

What the ZBA can do is pretty amazing – they can issue a “Variance” and “Special permit” that can pretty much allow ANY use of ANY type of land for anything else.

They can “permit” a Residential zoned land be used for Commercial or Industrial purposes without taking it to vote at the Town election (which is the “right” way to rezone areas and in most cases will end up failing. Because people dont like rezoning – they buy properties in a particular zone and dont expect it or adjoining areas to get rezoned because 4 people in the town think so !)
A very nice, and guaranteed circumvention of how the process should work.

Think about it – the land next to you, the house next to you can be paved over and an office or small factory can be built over there – all with no way for you to stop it.

If you dont be;ieve that can happen to you, there was a recent incident where 9 acres (yes not 10 feet for a building deck or shed – 9 ACRES of Residential land was allowed to become Industrial by the ZBA – 1 Willow St – look it up at the town).
Even though the bar for providing such permits is very high and courts overturn such decisions – which resident has the time or money to pay high priced lawyers.

So the same people you elect to these positions to protect the town zoning laws and interests of the town end up screwing you over !

Now what does all this have to do with Mr. Bartolini?

Mr Bartolini wants to run for the Selectman position so that he can elect developer friendly (or get rid of people who really care about the town residents and not developers) to the ZBA, so he and other fraternity developers can rezone all the land they desire in this town to Commercial and Industrial.
Simple as that.

I dont know one candidate from another and I am sure Mr Bartolini is a decent person but it is pretty obvious where your vote should go if you care about how much development you need in this town.

Barb Black
10 years ago
Reply to  John S

Well said, John S.

We all act in our own self-interest. But when it comes to our elected officials, most of us would like to believe–perhaps naively– that the people we choose to represent us will be impartial, fair and dedicated to improvement of the lives of the vast majority of the citizens that elected them. I hope that your comments will serve to educate many who might not realize “how things really work” in town government…and encourage them to vote accordingly.

KenG
10 years ago

This is rich. While we are discussing the challenger, look what the incumbent has been up to!

Hot off the presses! Last night the BOS, led by Mr. Boland, appointed members to a selection committee for the new Town Administrator. The item was not on their agenda when the agenda was originally posted, but was added to the agenda at 1:00 the day before the meeting. Unlike most other committees for hiring positions in town, the public was never notified or asked to submit their interest in serving on this committee. Who was appointed? How were the individuals identified or solicited to serve? What happened to interviews during an open, public meeting? And the pattern continues. Will it continue after Monday? That is up to all of us.

KenG
10 years ago
Reply to  KenG

From the State Attorney General’s web site:

“For local public bodies, meeting notices must be filed with the municipal clerk sufficiently in advance of a public meeting to permit posting of the notice at least 48 hours in advance of the public meeting. Notices may be posted on a bulletin board, in a loose-leaf binder or on an electronic display (e.g. television, computer monitor, or an electronic bulletin board), provided that the notice is conspicuously visible to the public at all hours in or on the municipal building in which the clerk’s office is located.

Meeting notices must be posted in a legible, easily understandable format; contain the date, time and place of the meeting; and list the topics that, as of the time the notice is filed, the chair reasonably anticipates will be discussed at the meeting. The list of topics must be sufficiently specific to reasonably inform the public of the issues to be discussed at the meeting.”

susan
10 years ago
Reply to  KenG

I haven’t had a chance to do a post on this yet (you all have keep me too busy approving comments!), but here’s a quick recap of last night’s Selectmen meeting.

After finalizing the new Town Administrator job description, the board discussed membership for the screening committee. Prior to the meeting, each selectman had submitted the names of potential members who they felt had relevant experience or insight to offer. They said they took this approach, rather than put out a general call for members, for the sake of expediency. They said it was similar to the approach they took in putting together the Fire Chief Screening Committee.

The board voted unanimously to appoint the following members to the Town Administrator Screening Committee: Russell Millholland, Sue Baust, Brian Donovan, Phil Jenks, Joe Lanning, and Paul Cimino.

(Full disclosure: Phil Jenks is my father.)

I’ll write a more in-depth report in a future post.

Tim Martel
10 years ago
Reply to  susan

Why was this done before Monday’s election?

Gail Jenks
10 years ago
Reply to  KenG

I am responsible for posting agendas, minutes, etc. on the Town website. The BOS agenda that I received and posted on Tuesday, the 8th, did have the item about discussing the selection committee for the new Town Administrator as did the revised agenda that I received and posted on Wednesday, the 9th.

Tim Martel
10 years ago
Reply to  Gail Jenks

If 48 hours notice must be provided, and the Town Clerk stamp for the May 10th meeting agenda shows “2012 May-9 P 12:59″…then the legal requirement to provide notice to the public was not fulfilled.

Which means the May 10th Selectman meeting is invalid?

http://southboroughtown.com/Agendas/BOSAg051012.pdf

KenG
10 years ago
Reply to  Tim Martel

Yes, why the rush and why the secrecy? Was Mr. Boland in a hurry to make sure the process headed in “his” direction just in case he lost the election? Why the select little lists of friends of the members of the BOS instead of opening it up to every town resident. They cry that no one wants to step up and participate and then when an important issue arises, they skulk in the shadows with their “solution.”

Here’s a question. How did they know to come to the meeting prepared with their lists? Obviously the process was discussed somewhere among some individuals. Was it done in a public meeting so that we, the residents of the town, could participate? Sounds to me like the answer to that question is no, but I am open to hearing more.

This is what I am talking about people. Having no printed information for residents to refer to at BOS meetings; hiding discussions under ambiguous topic listings; burying issues in the “consent agenda;” this stuff has got to stop. Hiring another Town Administrator cut from the same cloth as the current one is not going to do it. Neither is three more years of Bill Boland.

John Butler
10 years ago
Reply to  KenG

Its good to see some inflated rhetoric flowing about an election. At least it suggests that people can still get worked up enough to care. On the other hand when the rhetoric gets very silly, as this has, some deflation may be in order.

Calling this a “rush and secrecy” is a laugh. Fact is that it is very late and it wasn’t secret. Ms. Kitchen is leaving in less than two months and they are late in getting this done, probably because they wanted to see what Town Meeting was going to do about the Town Manager legislation. Moving briskly is in the Town’s interest. As for secrecy, Ms. Jenks tells us that this was part of the 48-hour-before original post and the stamp on the revised post provides 1.5 days notice. Are we to suppose that if there had been no revision within the 48 hour period the meeting would have been packed with interested residents wanting to serve who missed this because of its revision time? Please.

All of the other rhetoric and innuendo here, the “skulking in the shadows” the “hiding discussions” the “select little lists of friends” is an unwarranted besmirching of an overtaxed Board of Selectmen that generally works hard in the face of enormous community indifference.

I don’t agree with the posters here who suggest that our Town politics is particularly rough or that the occasional harshness is bad. The biggest problem is excess apathy not excess harshness. That said, both of these candidates have worked hard and selflessly for the Town. Imputations to the contrary about either of them are not justified and are unfair.

Independant S-boro voter
10 years ago
Reply to  KenG

Hi John Bulter,

Right on, brother! I agree with all your points. “Cloak and dagger” antics are best left to the full-time professional Pols on Beacon Hill and particularly in Washington, D.C.

Ken, I also see your point about better topic planning, and broader inclusion of residents that are interested in fashioning solution to real problems. Keep speaking your mind on important issues.

For gadflies out there, please, let’s just ‘stick to our own knitting’, as it were. Give me a candidate who can articulate a logical, feasible, detailed and cost-effective plan for efficiently managing basic town functions while actually preserving our small town, New England feel and i’ll be rivoted to that candidate. Everybody else, just please shut your pie hole and commissertate about Beacon Hill. Lead, Follow or Get out of the way! Don’t get me goin’ …..

Rachel
10 years ago

Unfortunately, I an not as informed as I’d like to be. Would the candidates be willing to have a live streaming debate? I’m sure the local Southborough blogs could host them, and this would allow residents like myself to make an informed decision.

Anonymous
10 years ago

Mr. Hamilton,
As a very visible town employee, living in town, with 2 children in public school, I am no longer comfortable posting in full disclosure. You are probably the MOST well aware resident of town politics. I wish I could post more often and with openness. Please respect my, and others, need for privacy.

southboro01772
10 years ago

I have been a Southborough resident for 16 years. Up until yesterday afternoon, I was still considering for whom to vote. I am now a firm supporter of Boland, as I was completely disgusted by the flyer I received in my mailbox which thanked us for agreeing to post a “Bartolini” sign in our yard. Neither my husband nor I had agreed to post any such sign. I now question the honesty of Bartolini’s campaign strategies which in turn makes me wonder about how he would perform as a Selectman. We live in a beautiful small town….there is no need for such agressive tactics. We just need to hear what each candidate stands for. That is how we should cast our votes, not by the number of signs we pass on the street.

Kelly Roney
10 years ago
Reply to  southboro01772

You should never get a sign in your yard that you didn’t agree to, but…

I once had 5 minutes to spare and thought I could remember the address of someone who had said yes to a sign in a legislative race. Bang, sign installed, and I was off to my job feeling efficient.

Several hours later, I got back to my spreadsheet and found that I had installed the sign in the wrong yard. Embarrassed, I looked up the homeowner and called to apologize.

Your sign may be a simple misunderstanding, rather than something bad, but you would be owed an apology in any case.

KenG
10 years ago

I respectfully beg to differ with you Mr. Butler. I, and at least one other resident I know, were interested in volunteering for the committee as we became very interested in the whole government issue after town meeting. I was waiting for an announcement that applications for volunteers were being accepted. I did check the BOS agenda when it was posted and there was no mention of APPOINTING a committee that night in my recollection. I also expected there would be interviews for a committee this important. I stand by my opinion that it was done with undue haste and without proper notice to town residents. I am also tired of hearing about how overworked the members of the BOS are when the issue being discussed is government transparency. Overwork is no excuse to skirt open meeting law.

I must also comment on southboro01772’s post. Are you serious? Did you actually feel disgusted by a thank you being sent to your home? Did it ever occur to you that it may have accidentally gone to the wrong address? I received a general flyer from Bartolini last week. Maybe they sent “thank you” flyers to those who agreed to post signs and the wrong flyer went to your house. I don’t see how this could be interpreted as “disgusting,”” dishonest” or “aggressive.”

John Kendall
10 years ago

Let the chips fall where they may…..after all of the slamming here, make sure you vote on Monday, and we’ll all know who the next selectman will be by late evening.

Elder
10 years ago

I too received a thank you note and never agreed to have a sign on my property. Five of my neighbors got one as well, without every agreeing to a sign. So, Ken G., six more examples of accidental addressing? I don’t think so.

It it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it’s a duck. If it looks like dirty politics and smells like dirty politics, it’s dirty politics.

Waterfall’s deceit and deceitful mailing. Not a warm and fuzzy feeling of trustworthy actions. On this alone, Bartolini should not win.

John Rooney
10 years ago

Mr. Hamilton, I do not believe it necessary for speakers to identify themselves for democracy to thrive. After all, democracy is not for the faint-hearted. The ability to speak one’s mind without the burden of the other party knowing all the facts about one’s identity can foster open communication and robust debate.

At the same time, when dealing with the issue of elections, I believe people should not take refuge behind anonymity to manipulate public opinion as it is more responsible to engage in political debate in a factual and objective manner. As we see here, many comments reveal the dark side of anonymous online speech. Anonymity serves as a cover for gossip and misinformation. Faceless comments wield virtual swords, carry virtual banners, and can sway innocent readers into beliefs not based upon facts. If you believe that anonymity reduces accountability and accuracy, then you will be able, like me, to read the comments on this site in record time.

John Butler
10 years ago

Mr. KenG,
You do make it a challenge to applaud interest, as I have here, when that interest comes packaged with accusations as unfair as your entirely unwarranted assertion of “corrupt and dishonest behavior.” Anyone who has watched the Selectmen or Advisory Committee over the last six years knows that few people have disagreed more frequently or more vehemently on policy matters for the Town than Mr. Boland and myself, time and again, yet I think your accusations are completely unjustified and reprehensible. Mr. Boland is honest, knowledgeable and has worked extremely hard on behalf of the Town. He deserves our thanks, not these anonymous slanders.

I would also say that I think any aspersions cast in the direction of Mr. Bartolini, by others here, on the basis of his connection with the real estate development community are also unfair and unjustified in my experience with him. Mr. Bartolini opposed the Town Manager warrant while I thought it would be a good thing for the Town, and I’m sure there are many other issues on which we might disagree. But, it takes many points of view to serve the Town well. I have always found Mr. Bartolini to straightforwardly put the interests of the Town first and consider assertions to the contrary unfair.

I am glad that you say that you want to serve on a Committee. There are plenty that could use help. The best way to volunteer is to humbly ask where your services might be needed most, rather than to target a particular committee as the exclusive focus of your initial interest. I would add that your capitalized claim that you didn’t know the Board would appointed that night is a peculiar reason for not attending the meeting, even if merely the TA job description was going to be discussed. Presumably attending such a meeting, even if you didn’t think there would be an appointment, would be evidence of your high level of interest, and you might learn something. If you say you cannot waste your time by attending a meeting that may not culminate in an important decision, you are admitting to a severe handicap for public service.

Although I would prefer to read even your outrageous accusations than suffer an uninterrupted community apathy, Mr. Hamilton’s observation that we have two decent human beings volunteering to serve us seems the central point worth remembering.

Tim Martel
10 years ago
Reply to  John Butler

Time committments do force people to choose how and when they can be involved in the town government. I also would have submitted my name as a candidate for this appointment had I known in advance that the Board of Selectmen had this in mind for the previous meeting.

The appointment of this board should have been communicated more clearly, with adequate advance notice, and perhaps a broader selection of candidates. How does the BOS expect the voters to support their choices if transparency is lacking?

Just out of curiousity – of the currently appointed members, how many voted against the TM legislation at Town Meeting?

KenG
10 years ago
Reply to  John Butler

Mr. Butler, in reading your second-to-last paragraph, you are assuming I am a newcomer to town government. I am not. I am very involved and have attended many BOS meetings. I had a conflict that evening and, though I would have liked to hear the discussion on the job description, I chose the conflicting demand. I would have chosen differently had I know that the committee was going to be apointed. Regardless of how you and I feel about meeting attendance, the law provides that residents should not have to attend meetings on the off chance that an issue will be discussed or resolved. That is why it requires that agendas be detailed enough to inform residents of specific discussions or actions. Ultimately, it appears that my attending or not attending said meeting would have made no difference, as the process for appointment had already been decided and did not include taking volunteers from the audience. I am having more trouble with how the formation of the committee was handled than whether or not it was posted properly. My serving on the committee is also not my primary concern. I would have liked to know better who is serving on this very important committee and would like to have attended interviews to hear first-hand what their interest and qualifications are.

I am well aware of how long you have served the town and worked with Mr. Boland. And I sincerely thank you for your service. I too have a history of working with Mr. Boland on town issues. It appears our opinions of Mr. Boland differ. We can agree to disagree on this. Maybe my use of the words “dishonest” and “corrupt” in my original post was overstated. For that I apologize. Let’s just say that my experience with and opinion of Mr. Boland is quite different from yours and leave it at that.

As for the “thank you” flyers from the Bartolini campaign – that is a bit strange, if indeed they went to many residents who did not post signs. I wouldn’t rush to call it dirty politics though, maybe a volunteer who stuffed envelopes with the wrong flyer? I still fail to see how it could be called “disgusting.”

LoyalResident
10 years ago

My family moved to Town in 1976. I love its character and think people have raised some valid points on both sides in the above posts.

Let’s stick to the issues and performance of the candidates.

Under Bill’s watch we have had a lot of “Legal Issues.” Many of these dust ups seem to require lawyers to sort out. Town Counsel has been paid over and over again for silly “Town missteps.”

My measure of any organization is its people. Unfortunately we have is we have lost some very talented people within the town over the past few years. Does anyone remember our last town Planner? Our new one is working hard but our last one was a rock star. She poured her heart into the job. Does anyone realize how many great police officers have left the department over the past 4 years?

Lets give someone else a try this election and see if Lee brings some new ideas and perspective. Lee’s lived in town for a long time and is therefore “one of us.” I suspect Lee will try his best, like most of us try to do in life. Lets embrace a small change and see where it takes us. We have 3 BOS members so it will be a collaborative decision making process. Bill has had an long opportunity to serve, I would like to see how Lee executes in this position.

We are small town with tremendous people we are capable of more. Our community should strive for excellence.

Taylor Tyler
10 years ago

Mr, Rooney,

How I remember in 2010 when the theme of your campaign was transparency. What happened? Did you actually see what was going on behind the scenes and the insane decisons that were being made by other town officials. At some point the truth always comes out and in the end, when everybody starts pointing fingers at who did what and why, what will your excuse be? You are now part of the problem not the solution.

Two great quotes come to mind

“Men make history and not the other way around. In periods where there is no leadership, society stands still. Progress occurs when courageous, skillful leaders seize the opportunity to change things for the better.”
Harry S. Truman

“The supreme quality for leadership is unquestionably integrity. Without it, no real success is possible, no matter whether it is on a section gang, a football field, in an army, or in an office.”
Dwight D. Eisenhower

To the several brave people who use their real name on this blog and point to this fact as courage: It’s apparent that you have never been hounded and harassed by the Town of Southborough. Once you become a threat, then we’ll see how brave you really are.

John Butler
10 years ago
Reply to  Taylor Tyler

I use my real name, but have never pointed to it as courage. I might point to its possibility as speaking for the decency of our citizens.

I would prefer that others did not post anonymously. I think the dialog would be better, but I absolutely agree that the right to post anonymously is sacrosanct.

I am disturbed by the implications of your “Once you become a threat, then we’ll see how brave you really are.” This sounds like it would have a chilling effect on others. In my experience, even when one is amidst very large scale passionate contention in Town, most people remain respectful if you are able to stick to the issue and avoid personalities. If you are going to stick to issues, I think you need not fear using your real name.

Frank Crowell
10 years ago

Let me see if I have this right.



A 48 hour notice was given, bringing it just under the wire of open meeting laws, that the BOS would be choosing the selection committee for TA. A resident in town ,who already thought they knew the agenda (TA committee not on the agenda), did not happen to check for changes at the last minute and then planned to do something else that evening (maybe catch his kid at a sporting event), gets chastised on this board for pointing out that this is business as usual and posting anonymously. Oh and then icing on the cake – if you can’t make it to the BOS for their usual meetings maybe you should start out volunteering on some other committee We need you, but another committee may be a better place to start.



Does KenG bring a unique perspective – like maybe a long time resident who has worked in the private sector and wants to bring a fresh voice to the town (no, I am not him using a different identity)? We may never know. I hope he does not get disappointed – that would be crime.



I honestly do not know what happens in this town. Many fine and wonderful people. And then the small town politics kick in. Monday, I will certainly take a ballot. All bets are off after that.


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