Sunday, May 17, 2009

Council avoids "stepping on toes of PZC," rejects option to accept Strathmore Dam

Last Wednesday I laid bare the stark reality of the Council leadership's hypocrisy on "land use" issues. That is, while they asked for money for the AT&T easement in March 2008, they gave away the Richmond Glen easement for $10... and had the audacity to accuse me of extortion when I requested the Town get fair market value for the easement.

I think it's also worth noting the concern voiced by Councilman Ecke and others. They felt my questions about the sweetheart deal they advocated for the Richmond Glen easement were an infringement on the role of the PZC. They said I was "stepping on the toes of the Planning and Zoning Commission."

Now maybe I'm missing something, but this video seems to show Mr. Ecke saying that the PZC is not omniscient and a Council review of their work can be appropriate:

But that was Strathmore Dam that no one foresaw. And that was a public safety issue that no one foresaw. And that was the job of the PZC, not the Council.

And the Council, including Mr. Ecke (as well as Altieri, Hall, Ruocco & White), "never" voted on Strathmore Dam. Because that is a Planning and Zoning issue.

The double talk astounds me.

But on a serious note and in fairness to some Council members, it was probably easier to contradict themselves than offer the real reasons for pushing through this easement under the guise and darkness of midnight executive session secrecy.

Tim White


Anonymous said...

I feel the problem with this town is that many, if not all, of the members of the TC grew up here. Cheshire is a small town. Many played sports and went to school in this town. Many of their friends live here.

They run for town council and they have to make difficult decisions, many times involving people they know very well. If they vote against their life long friend, is their friendship over? If they vote in favor of their friend, are they doing their duty to the town that elected them?

I think there are too many people on this council with local ties that were elected to help their friends. Most could care less about the rest of the town.

It is sad.

I wonder if we should force all TC members to come clean if they have any personal or business relationships with people who are bidding on a job or a developer looking for a cheap easement. If we find out later that they lied, they should be dismissed from the council.

We have TC members who recuse themselves from some votes to make it look like they are honest, but when it is an important vote, they won't recuse themselves.

I for one, would almost rather see people who are not life long residents running for office here.

Anonymous said...

"I feel the problem with this town is that many, if not all, of the members of the TC grew up here. "

Interesting observation but there was no discussion of how in the U.S. people get elected to public office. Here's a thought for you - - our elected officials at all levels from the lowliest to highest offices are just a reflection of the voters who voted.

So, how come so many people with local roots get elected to office in this town? We the voters put them in and if we the voters don't like what we see then we the voters need to run them out of office. The best news is November is almost here.

Whining may be an activity but voting is an important responsibility and it needs to be done in a responsible fashion.

Anonymous said...

"Whining may be an activity but voting is an important responsibility"

But when they lie in order to get into office and then treat the office like their own little playground, there isn't anything we can do during the 2 years they are in office.

They become arrogant, snobbish, and very controlling people.

All you need is 5 people and they control our town. It is a lot easier to get those 5 if they are all life long residents.

Anonymous said...

Only 24 weeks until Nov. 3 !!

Matt, Matt, and Mike, don't let the door hit you on the way out.

Anonymous said...

"I think there are too many people on this council with local ties that were elected to help their friends"

And isn't it nice for the realtors, developers and land owners to have such close friends on the council, P&Z, Inland Wetands, etc...

Think about the transfer of wealth from the taxpayer to these special people.

Anonymous said...

How about a 1 term limit?

Anonymous said...

how about limiting how long you can live in town? limit how many people you can talk to or befriend?

Anonymous said...

That sounds your time up yet?

Anonymous said...

Now that an asshole like you is here, sure

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

It does help to know something about the town. Living in one place for a long time can help make good knowing certain areas flood (memories from childhood playing in the water?) can bring balance to a developer's hired gun engineer coming before boards and commissions singing that water is, "Not a problem!".
Knowledge matched with common sense is what is needed by elected and appointed officials.
However, what seems to have slipped away is respect for our conflict of interest ordinance. It is one of the toughest in the state. But it can only work through VOLUNTARY compliance. There was a long standing, unwritten rule (supposedly first coined by town attorney Knott, often the target of vicious attacks by the Developer's Party)..."When in doubt, get out"....concerning conflicts of interest. It simply meant that if there was even a hint that there was some improper connection to an issue, a person should recuse themselves. That system worked pretty well for a long time.
Lately has been trampled....the most recent incident being Dill's vote on Serenity Ranch. Brodach is a member of the Chamber and his dues help pay Dill's salary. If even a dullard like Mr. Dill cannot see that then certainly his political bosses might have reminded him. But then again they would not have had the 5th vote that they needed.
When the Serenity Ranch houses start getting sold, check out who will handle some of the closings. Atty. Hall perhaps?

Anonymous said...

If Hall does start handling the closings for Serenety Ranch, then there better be a criminal investigation into this. It will be a form of bribery.

Even if he is out of office (we can only hope), he should be brought up on charges.

Ethics seems to have been thrown out the window with this current TC. What happened to honest government?