Monday, October 05, 2009

No confidence? It doesn't matter. Altieri said "Council does not need to know what is going on at ground level."

Some of you may have heard that the Cheshire Police Union had a unanimous vote of "no confidence" in the Chief.

Thankfully though, if there are any real issues we have Personnel Committee Chairman Matt Altieri to save the day! And he has an "Outstanding working relationship with Town Hall."

So I'm sure he's already dealt with this and put it to bed, right?

Besides, I'm sure a vote of "no confidence" doesn't really matter. Remember that the minutes of the Personnel meeting on January 17, 2008 clearly state:

"Mr. Altieri said he has always felt that things are done on a daily basis, and if something is wrong, there is a process to go through in order to change things.... It seems to him that Mr. Sima wants to know what is going on at ground level, and Council members will never know this, and it is the job of the administration to know what is going on…not the Council.... Council does not need to know what is going on at ground level."

So there you have it. The Council does not need to know about these irrelevant votes of "no confidence!" Yippee! My life is so much easier.

Now if everyone would just realize...

And move along!!!

Tim White

p.s. Being serious for a moment... last night Personnel Committee member Tom Ruocco emailed Personnel Chairman Altieri to request this vote of "no confidence" be placed on the Wednesday agenda for the already scheduled Personnel Committee meeting. This morning, Chairman Altieri called Councilman Ruocco to tell him that was not going to happen. But by this afternoon, staff had advised the Council that the vote of "no confidence" would be placed on Wednesday's agenda.


Anonymous said...

Of course Altieri doesn't want it on the agenda. It's an election year and it will make him look bad.
While he is out fighting to get turf, there are issues with our police dept.
Just one more reason to vote him and the others out.
Lets hope the GOP will use this to convince voters that he is a waste on the TC.

Anonymous said...

The town is facing its biggest labor crisis in history, and Altieri doesn't want the personnel committee to discuss it. Is Altieri in denial or just incompetent?

Anonymous said...

Hopefully the town will make a vote of "no confidence" on Nov. 3 and vote him out.

Anonymous said...

Altieri says the personnel committee will not discuss the police crisis, then staff turns it around and says the committee will discuss it.

This just shows who’s really in charge -- Milone says jump and Altieri asks how high? This is a corruption of our system. The elected council, not the appointed town manager, is supposed to be in charge.

Anonymous said...

The deep and unanimous dissatisfaction of police officers has been brewing for a long time, and Altieri and the council majority have deliberately ignored it. Now it’s come to a crisis and Altieri still wants to ignore it! What a mess.

Breachway said...

If these issues were handled properly, there would be no reason for anyone to place any blame on staff or the personell committee for the no confidence vote. These things happen in the private and public sector. They are called Human Resources issues. Altieri's denial/secrecy or whatever you want to call it, doesn't make sense. It makes me suspicious.

Marc Antony said...

nothing could be finer than watching our finest crash and burn making us glorious more trouble to come

Cedar Lane said...

"If these issues were handled properly, there would be no reason for anyone to place any blame on staff or the personell committee for the no confidence vote."

But these issues were not handled properly and blame can validly be placed up the line on:

(1) Chief Cruess who doesn't practice basic professional HR principles;

(2) TM Milone who's more concerned about keeping things quiet and protecting his image than dealing with problems;

(3) Councilman Altieri, chair of the Personnel Committee, who has stated that he doesn't want to know about town employees' problems; and

(4) the Democratic Council majority which is content to pass off issues to Milone, effectively ignoring them, while pursuing their own pet projects.

These are the root causes of the current crisis. The only ways to correct it is for voters to replace the current Council majority with a new majority, and to require Milone and Cruess (if they keep their jobs) to take courses in professional HR management.

Anonymous said...

The problems at the PD have been brewing for the past three years. The Union put the town manager on notice every step of the way. Milone trusted that what the Chief was telling him, "It's not true they're just a bunch of cry babies" was accurate, obviously not. Milone chose not to do anything about the Union's complaints and this is the result, shame on him.

Anonymous said...

Altieri boasts of his “outstanding working relationship with town hall.” Well, Altieri and Milone are pals, but apparently neither of them have good working relationships with the police officers or other town employees.

Altieri was elected to help the town AVOID such problems. Instead he’s EXACERBATED the problem.

Anonymous said...

Rumor around the coffee shops are that Milone begged the police union not to take the vote until AFTER the November election, why's that? Retirements or in order.

former n h employee said...

any other town that had three people burn to death in a home invasion while telling their staff to stand there and watch would have been fired he messed up in new haven get rid of him just ask mr derf kleist he knows he audited the city when someone was the fnance director and they owed the state over 700,000 dollars

Anonymous said...

42 of 43 voted no confidence, I'd hate to be the "one" who did not vote, Chief supporter? Come on man, have some self dignity! At least stand up and vote your opinion, no back bone! No excuses!

Advice for the Chief: Do yourself a favor and save yourself and your family from public humiliation and aggrivation! You have put your time in and apparently have worn out your welcome, retire!

Anonymous said...

if it's true Milone asked the police union not to pass their resolution til after the Nov.3 election, then Milone is meddling in partisan politics which the TM is not supposed to do. its time to clean house of all this corruption.

Anonymous said...

Gee, and we thought the Democrats were the party of labor.

This should not have become political, but because the Dems as a group have ignored this simmering problem for over a year, they have proven themselves to be incompetent at governance.

And not only Altieri. Laura DeCaprio, the other Dem on the personnel committee, is quoted in the NH paper saying she was "blindsided" by this. DeCaprio admits she was clueless (despite Tim White bringing it up numerous times).

It’s time for them to be replaced by others who will do their job.

Anonymous said...

I hope when we get a new Town Manager/Council & Police Chief the collusion will stop and autonomy restored to the Town of Cheshire

Tony Perugini said...

Tim, thank you for posting this information so that the public can be informed about what's going on. It's an unfortunate situation but trying to sweep this under the carpet and hide it from the Town is not in the best interests of the Town of Cheshire.

I'm not familiar with the chief of police but I am familiar with most members of our police force and I hold them in high regard. It's always a difficult situation when a team cannot depend on it's leader.

Certainly morale has to be low at the Police station but I know they will continue to keep the safety of our town on top of their list of priorities.

I'll withold judgement about this situation until more facts are made available but I hope that the Town Council, specifically the majority, can put differences aside and work together to quickly resolve this situation.

Tony Perugini
(R) BOE Candidate

Anonymous said...

Take a look at the TC 08/11/2009 meeting notes;

"Mr. Altieri explained that, annually, the Council visits the Town Manager’s contract, and this year Mr. Milone volunteered to take a salary freeze if his
contract was extended."

Maybe I am reading this wrong but it seems like Milone gets another year of work out of the deal.

Tim White I applaud you on your stance and voting not to extend the contract. Here are the meeting notes about you (you were right on with the police department comment):

"Mr. White said he would not support the resolution; there have been good and
bad things that have happened in the past year under the Town Manager’s watch. He said this is his opinion and not fact. He has seen policies driventhrough inaction, a hostile work environment for employees, concerns with the police department work environment, budgetary overruns, which do not directlyrelate to the Town Manager but do happen in Town Hall. He hopes to see a plan for improvements in the next 12 months. Mr. White mentioned some positives in Town such as Covanta trash disposal facility issue, CRRA, Mr. Milone’s sustainability effort in Town Hall, his clever approach to addressing the Pratt & Whitney closing."

Anonymous said...

On 11/3 we need to vote "No Confidence" in Altieri...

just 4 more weeks said...

Dear Matt, Mike, and Mike,

Ye are grown intolerably odious to the whole (town); you who were deputized here by the people to get grievances redressed, are yourselves grievous! So! In the name of God, just go!”

- Oliver Cromwell, 1653
(in dismissing the tyrannical rump Parliament)

Anonymous said...

To the gang of 5--"If we never see you again, it'll be too soon...

Police Commission Now said...

the republicans think they are going to win by starting dissention in town with the police department the only thing they are going to start is a crime spree because word is getting out they are not patroling it is obvious they are starting a job action because they are trying to blackmail the town into letting them do what they want like they used to walberg caved into these rank and file cruess did not he was a good police chief.

Anonymous said...

Police Commission Now said...
"the republicans think they are going to win by starting dissention in town with the police department"

Nonsense. First, these problems have been brewing for years; they did not just suddenly pop up at election time. Second, all 42 police officers voted unanimously, and some of them are Democrats.

Third, the CPU has submitted a list of 35 specific grievances to the TM and Council. 35 is a huge number of complaints which shows that unhappiness runs deeply through the ranks, and was not “started” by the Republicans.

The fact is that this happened on the watch of the Dem council majority which has ignored these problems for over a year. As recently as Monday morning, Altieri still did not want to discuss these problems at Wednesday night’s personnel meeting. And DeCaprio has publicly admitted she knew nothing of these problems until yesterday.

No, the Republicans did not start this dissention, but the Democrats have proven their incompetence to deal with it.

Breachway said...

Cedar Lane - right on. You are 100% right. I know Florio is happy he doesn't work in the private sector. Milone should be too. He would be fired for letting this get to this point. HR training is a must

Anonymous said...

Breachway and Cedar Lane... are you forgetting there is a personnel manager already in place (Zullo). Certainly he should have been able to handle these problems...if he was a professional and not a joke, that is.

Anonymous said...

Zullo is merely Milone's henchman. The buck stops with Milone.