"Regionalization"

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Re: "Regionalization"

Post by KevinNSaisi on Mon Jul 14, 2008 12:22 pm

It all depends upon the wording of the motion. If the Public Works was unable to do the work, as they stated, was there authorization to spend additional money on the project by hiring a contractor? As long as the cost remained under $2000, it did not have to go out to bid, however, it was the town manager's decision make.

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Re: "Regionalization"

Post by KevinNSaisi on Tue Jul 15, 2008 6:39 am

gadget6412 wrote:I think there is a little reading into the interpretation of Roberts Rules. If the wording was for the Public Works to do the work if they could and they answered that they could not does not open the matter for anyone to do if the intent was for a competent or liable entity to handle. Was there not a contractor on hold for this action since the PW was not able to perform the function and did not the PW end doing the cleanup?

But back to your regionalization issue. Is there an opening in the charter and/or bylaws to allow these actions? It seems that there was a lot of regionalization from the fire in Mexico in which a fireman was injured. It seems that there can be intertown agreements to fight each others fires but cannot be under one entity. Why is that?

Any provisions in the Charter that prevent these efforts can be changed by the voters. Just like the U.S. Constitution (which is over 200 years old, the Charter can be, and has been revised as needed. Yes, we have mutual aid agreements, but those are based upon the premise that each town provide an equal amount of coverage to the other towns, hence the word "mutual". The problem is that Rumford has needed way more coverage from Mexico than they have needed. This has caused a financial burden on their budget. While other solutions are possible, some are suggesting a regional call force or a regional fire department. The premise is that a combined budget would provide better coverage for the entire area at a shared cost.

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Re: "Regionalization"

Post by KevinNSaisi on Tue Jul 15, 2008 6:51 am

C wrote:I think our charter needs to be rewritten to accomodate the town's future plans. How do the charters of other River Valley communities compare with ours? It wouldn't do to change ours to allow consolidation if others don't also.
The other towns in the valley don't have charters, and must rely on state laws for their guidance. As with many things where the state is involved, this takes away the power of the people to decide certain aspects of their town structure. Even though the state is eroding "home rule" authority on a regular basis, it is still better to maintain what we have rather than give it all away. Our current Charter has been revised a number of times, including this past June. It is a working document that adjusts to the times as the people decide. Those who try to tell you the Charter is too old and out-dated are playing poliutical games to aqchieve some dasterdly plan. Why would we want to do away with local control of how our government works?? If you have suggestions for a change in our Charter, please share them with the Town Manager or Selectmen. There is an opportunity for changes to be made at each election. I believe that they are planning on offering to the people an opportunity to vote on changes to the requirement for a full-time town manager in November. They cannot offer it sooner because our Charter requires an emergency for such votes. Unlike previous boards, this board understands that an emergency doesn't mean "I want it done now".

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Re: "Regionalization"

Post by Andy Russell on Fri Jul 18, 2008 12:04 pm

KevinNSaisi wrote:
C wrote:
They took a hit to keep their Town Manager from looking bad.
Do you really believe this or are you taking a "hit" in an attempt to make the selectmen look better? If Jim Doar really did say "I don't want to know about it", I take that as an attempt to distance himself from the fiasco. I'm sure if they alerted him to their plans it was doing him no favor. How long could I expect to keep a job if I were to tell those who hired me what they could/should not do? The simple fact here is that the board of which two of the "lumberjacks" were members of, voted unanimously to have public works deal with the removal of the trees. These two thumbed their noses at the municipal government process they were elected and sworn into. That I take offense to. Here is a quote from one of your posts regarding our FD:
I believe that the firefighters showed little respect for our charter
by violating it. I don't recall any efforts to change the rule. When
you intentionally violate the charter, you might as well be spitting on
the Constitution or urinating on the U.S. Flag. I take great offence to
anyone doing so. I respect the fire department for the work they do,
but I find much of their actions and antics to be offensive. Just my
opinion.

How can you say what you did above and then defend the actions of the selectmen?

You make a good point. However, my recollection is that the Public Works Department informed Jim that they could not do the job, which is when the lumberjacks established plan to take care of the job. If the motion is worded to include that the work was to be done exclusively by the Public Works Department, then you are correct. If not, they would be in the clear. Also, it is common to have discussion either before or after the motion. I believe that this may have been the case; the board decided to cut the trees, then Jim commented that he would talk to Andy about it. However, if Public Works was not a part of the motion it were was not a decision of the board, and no violation occurred. Another possibility, and the way I recall it, is that they included in the motion to have the Public Works do the job if they could. This leaves it open ended if they could not, which would put the responsibility for completing the task in the hands if the town manager, and follows logically in the scenario I mentioned above.

I am writing this post to try to put an end to the rumors/misinformation still being circulated about the trees that were cut at the Town Hall. First, my boss, Mr. Doar told that Mr. Boivin had made a motion 'to have the Public Works Dept. remove the trees'. This was seconded by Mr. Diconzo, and approved by the Board. Second, I never told anyone that we could not do the job. I have a very capable crew. The reason I did not want to use my crew was that time is critical to us in the fall. We are working to finish our jobs before winter. That is why I orginally contacted Mr. Anctil about a quote. He said that he could do the complete job (cutting/chipping/clean up) for $300, and he was willing to do it early on a Sunday morning so it would not impact vehicle/pedestrian traffic. With all things considered, I decided to use Mr. Anctil.

The morning the trees were cut, Mr. Doar called me to his office. I discuss my concerns with him (safety, communication, and liability). He told me to have my crew clean up the mess, and that is what we did. He also mentioned that he had no prior knowledge about this taken place. I did then and still believe he was completely honest with me. Everyone is throwing speculations around in these posts. There are many "what if's" to any situation, but I can't figure out why Mr. B or Mr. D didn't simply ask what the status was. Especially since they made/seconded/approved the motion for us to do the job.

Also, Ms. Adams of the SJ is the only 'reporter' who has contacted me on this and other recent issues that have been appearing on other web sites.

I am not looking to start/continue a debate on this issue, but merely wanted to set the record straight. Thank you for giving me the chance to do so. Hopefully, we can all move on to more important issues within our community.

Respectfully,
Andy Russell
Rumford Public Works Director

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Re: "Regionalization"

Post by C on Fri Jul 18, 2008 12:20 pm

Thank you Andy for setting the record straight. We appreciate and encourage your input here on this forum. It sounds like your original quote from Mr. Anctil would have been the most cost effective approach for our town. Hopefully we can put this subject to rest and get on with the original intent of this thread which is regionalization.

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Re: "Regionalization"

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