Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Prep for new newsletter

We are preparing to put out another newsletter. We are looking at including a survey with questions about having a library, whether to consider building a community building versus using the elementary school, going from three Selectmen to five, a detailed line item budget, the town officials being hired at the town meeting by the townspeople.

We welcome suggestions you may have.

55 comments:

  1. Five selectmen on the town payroll...in this dinky little town with only 1 flashing traffic light? That just seems a wee bit excessive to me.

    Also, in this economy, I cannot fathom building anything new, thus adding to what I percieve as an already way-out-of-proportion tax burden. Our busted-up roads are killing our vehicles, jobs (let me rephrase that, non-taxpayer-paid jobs) are hard to find and a long commute to get to them, and lots of people are really financially and physically hurting right now.

    I'm one who will never believe that adding more managers to a company will improve the company (or in this case, rural town), rather it would be another thing that creates more red tape and financial dead weight. Till up the overgrown weeds and re-seed. It really can be that simple.

    :)
    Kathy Perin

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  2. Oh Kathy, you are not seeing the big picture here and I for one fully realize you can as I have read with delight some of your past comments.The problem is that, if you happen to have the bad luck of having 3 incompetent selectmen than your in serious trouble but as other towns our size have found out, the appointment of 5, helps counter ill conceived idea's and votes. It's all about, balance. Now, I fully believe we really do only need a part-time town manager. I hope this helps in some small way.

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  3. Thanks for the input and making me looking at this thing in another way. I guess I'd have to spend some time researching what other towns are doing, and if what they are doing has proven to be successful or not.

    The thing that really yanks my Johnson rod are the closed door meetings, or maybe they are called "executive sessions?" I have no clue--just remember reading about it and wondering how that can possibly be kosher.

    However, it should also be known that I have never attended a town meeting, as my work schedule prohibits it, so I really have no right to say anything. ;-)

    I just adore this form of communication because it's the only one I have access to when it comes to matters like these, so I am very appreciative to the folks who got the ball rolling with this whole thing. I very much enjoy reading everyone's opinions, although I wish the hit-and-run personal attacks wouldn't happen and think that if more people sign their little notes here, that wouldn't happen, because not many people do that in face-to-face conversations.

    I love my new home town and have very much enjoyed meeting all my neighbors and making new friends. It makes me sad to see the division taking place here...we are all in this together, ya know?

    ;-)
    --Kathy Perin

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  4. Being a Selectmen is a time consuming job. Guessing about 10 hours a week during good times and even more at crunch times like preping for town meeting, tax commitment time, fical year closing etc. Our Selectmen "Skip" since March has been putting in as least 30 hours a week at the town office. Anyhow my point is more Selectmen would help spread out the workload, would likely bring more managerial skills and diverse life experiences. That all has to be good.

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  5. I don't know if it would appropriate but I would like a survey about if people would like Cindy to reimburse the town or get jail time. I go for the extra time we ain’t going to get anything much back anyhow.

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  6. I would like to make a recommendation ,the newsletter to contain an resident invitation / offer to start a list of potential and interested citizens that would be willing to devote some of their spare time to the rebuilding of our town personnel. This would be a new beginning and hopeflly involve unbias ciizens with no agenda other than to help out their community. Like their name , address phone, email and their current position or retired from ? Just an idea ?

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  7. As was in the prior plan, I would like to see a senior ctr where the local's could gather for coffee and discussions. For the ones who don't drive any longer they could be left off and picked up in a hour or so. Being alone all the time is not good for anyone and the town could help with this. Please, think about it. Cost a room, table , chairs and a large coffee pot.

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  8. To above, Value, PRICELESS.

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  9. ...I thought we already had a designated area like this but it is called "Dysarts." :D Miss you Mr. Knowles! Seriously though, count me in as a volunteer ride-giver if idea this ever goes anywhere.

    --Kathy Perin

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  10. I would be curious in knowing the interest level from others for publishing all property tax data, not just who has unpaid taxes.

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  11. Although there is a pleasent rural component to living in Newburgh does anyone have ideas on how to promote/stimulate some commercial growth, light manufacturing, retail businesses etc. We have direct access to I95, ample unused or underused land and seriously need some property tax relief.

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  12. What is the problem Anonymous July 19, 2010 7:38 AM

    What axe do you have to grind on taxes? You afraid someone is getting a better deal than you? Take your lazy butt to the town office and find out what ever you think yo need to know.

    What could printing all the property tax data possibly do to help you or anyone else?

    You have got to be another one of the flat landers trying to make waves and we do not need this right now, we need to focus on the current issues and not create more.

    You people never quit.

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  13. Dear Anon at 7:59 am... I'm not the poster in question, as I always (probably stupidly) sign my posts with my name, because whenever I post something on line, I imagine I'm speaking to a friend, a fellow neighbor, face to face.

    BUT I gotta chime in on the taxes, especially property taxes, are a huge burdon to a lot of us and I honestly don't see any problem with inquiring as to how one's particular amount is determined. I don't understand the mill rate and how all that works, nor do I understand why properties are valued the way they are. But why is it wrong to question how taxes are figured? What's wrong with asking questions? Are you implying that we should just have blind faith?

    Also, may I please ask is that you reconsider raggin' on us "flatlanders?" I take that personally and it kinda smarts. Life it much, much too short for such hate and disdain. We are all New Englanders, an awful lot of hard working people who will give the shirts off their backs to help a neighbor out, and there is much more strength to be found in a community that works together to fix things and solve problems, rather than divides itself over such trivial things as who is "from away," which, unless one is an American Indian, is all of us.

    --Kathy Perin

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  14. Hi Kathy:
    Sure wish you would consider running for
    a town office position.

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  15. To Anonymous July 19, 7:46 am.

    Great Idea, you may be on to something.

    Although I risk pi--ing off a few I have to agree with you. Some additional development would be handy to help offset the tax burden and it does not have to be heavy industry. Check out this business, sort of fits in with our community and I am sure they pay their share of taxes to the town of Madison as well as provide many jobs.

    https://www.backyardfarms.com/

    Jim Hopkins

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  16. One could assume that our 3 selectmen fall into the Gross Incompetence category for not excursing due diligence. Now, Newburgh has missing town records, no backup and not one of them knew how long municipal records must be kept per the law, paper or electronically. Talk about intentional breach of fiduciary duty. What about The Dunton's and Ms. Hatch. Not in the history of man has a crime taken so long to be charged and without the freezing of assets, when it could of made a difference, leads one to believe there is a lot more than meets the eye going on and unless the town people can get together and start some major inquiries soon, your tax money will never be found and all the elements that are involved will never be held accountable. 1/2 million dollars in tax money and with fee's, etc it will be much more. How many of our residents work very hard to scrape together their tax dollars , deprive themselves of needed necessities and see it taken when they had " Trusted " the town officials to safeguard it? QUESTIONS NEED TO BE ASKED AND ANSWERED, FOR EVERY PENNY. COME ON FOLKS YOUR TOWN NEEDS YOUR INVOLVEMENT....

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  17. ok above poster, you are right. However we are old, on a fixed income and it is hard for us to go to the meetings. We do want to know the answers as everyone really does and you are right again, where the ax falls, it falls as our trust has been broken and that is not fair, to us, all the residents of Newburgh. How in the world can we, two old seniors ask and be involved? We have to rely on the concerned citizen group and hope they can get the answers for us and no one else will expose this on going cover-up. They tried to warn us but when we got the call from the town office to vote fo buddy, we thought mike was up to something. He was, trying to warn us and make a difference. I only wish we had listened. To late now, but we are listening now. I would sign our name but I don't want to offend our neighbor. Please keep the news coming as we do appreciate it and want Newburgh to be whole again.

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  18. formal apology
    Greenville chairman steps down after gaffe

    7/23/10 08:55 pm Updated: 7/23/10 10:24 pm
    By Diana Bowley
    BDN Staff

    GREENVILLE, Maine — Greenville Selectman Alan McBrierty, who called a resident who wanted to speak at a public hearing earlier this month “the mouth,” presented the board with a written apology Wednesday and stepped down as board chairman. ABOVE COPIED FROM THE BANGOR DAILY NEWS *****
    WHAT ABOUT WHAT HAPPEN HERE IN NEWBURGH AT THE LAST MEETING ????? WHAT IS GOING TO BE DONE ABOUT THAT ?? AGAIN, ANOTHER REASON WE NEED OUTSIDE HELP TO REGAIN CONTROL OF OUR TOWN. THE SELECTMEN ARE OUT CONTROL AND NEED TO STEP DOWN, NOW.

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  19. to the older citizen that commented earlier. You got a call from the town office to vote for Buddy? Who called you? Anyone else been called to vote for a candidate? I don't believe its legal for our town officials to call & campaign for votes..

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  20. to the above, Cindy Dunton called us. It seems that she said they were calling a lot of the voters. (they)
    I don't know who all (they) are or were. But I know that Lois and Nancy were there at the time as they all said we need to get the voters out as they thought it was going to be close. Don't get me wrong, I did not see all 3 of them but I could easily tell their voices in the background. Thank you for the interest as we ( the residents of Newburgh) all need to pull together and have all things done fair and honest which we had thought was, but it wasn't. It certainly seems that there is more than one bad apple and hopefully the concerned citizens group can find out who it or they ,might be. Something sure seems to be going on as the selectmens meeting has been cancelled and the town office closed up for a week.

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  21. I do not believe its legal for the town employees to call & request votes, esp. from our town office.
    AND Speaking of VOTE..I really though it ODD when I went to vote on March 9th (candidates Buddy Belcher & Mike Burns running for 1st selectman) that Nancy Hatch was tending the ballot box & Cindy Dunton was the registrar. Isn't that a conflict of interest? When did these jobs change? No ballot clerks for such a busy 12 hour vote day? We always have had ballot clerks & Lois as our registrar. Lois, Cindy & Nancy printing off ballots as needed??? Several people have mentioned previous to the vote day they were asked by town employees to sign absentee ballots even tho they were going to be able to vote on the 9th. I have heard from more than one couple that they were called to remember to vote & vote for Buddy. WHY WOULD THE TOWN EMPLOYEES BE SO WORRIED THAT MIKE BURNS MIGHT WIN??????
    I had to wait to vote as the door was closed to the voting room as well, Nancy Hatch & 2 or 3 men were talking in there where the ballot box & voting booths were, while Cindy & Lois just stood by. Should that happen? I, again believe its illegal!!!!!!!!!!! HERE AGAIN, the selectmen govern our town & if this voting was not being down correctly it is there JOB to see that it is... The VOTE before this one someone changed the voting hours from 8 am to 5pm, I believe its a law to have the voting 8am to 8pm. Does anyone know??
    TOWNS PEOPLE please listen up, there is so much more going on than just the fact that CINDY DUNTON STOLE $$ from us!!! Many, many statutes, laws & such are not being followed by the town officials.

    What do you think about the selectmen deciding on their own,that Lois Libby doesn't have to pay the town back for not paying her health, dental & life insurance for 5+ years along with accepting many years of Christmas bonuses that were never approved by anyone???? They wrote in the recent newsletter their decision on this, BUT without a public meeting, posted to the public there is NO WAY they can make this decision. Don't you think the people of this town should have been the ones to vote & decide if Lois needs to pay this back?? Its after all OUR money she used. IMAGINE how much money YOU paid over those years for ALL 3 to have FULL HEALTH, DENTAL & LIFE INSURANCE!!!! A lot of people right in town don't even have INSURANCE... Now none of them need to be responsible for this.. ARE THEY KIDDING? Oh don't forget Lois & Cindy got a $3 an hour raise, YUP, just so they could afford health insurance!! Then never paid a dime of it after the raise. $3... again ARE THEY KIDDING!!! Any FORMER town officials know the answers to these voting questions?

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  22. I don't believe its legal for the town employees to call & request votes, esp. from our town office.
    AND Speaking of VOTE..I really though it ODD when I went to vote on March 9th (candidates Buddy Belcher & Mike Burns running for 1st selectman) that Nancy Hatch was tending the ballot box & Cindy Dunton was the registrar. Isn't that a conflict of interest? When did these jobs change? No ballot clerks for such a busy 12 hour vote day? We always have had ballot clerks & Lois as our registrar. Lois, Cindy & Nancy printing off ballots as needed??? Several people have mentioned previous to the vote day they were asked by town employees to sign absentee ballots even tho they were going to be able to vote on the 9th. I have heard from more than one couple that they were called to remember to vote & vote for Buddy. WHY WOULD THE TOWN EMPLOYEES BE SO WORRIED THAT MIKE BURNS MIGHT WIN??????
    I had to wait to vote as the door was closed to the voting room as well, Nancy Hatch & 2 or 3 men were talking in there where the ballot box & voting booths were, while Cindy & Lois just stood by. Should that happen? Again is this legal!!!!!!!!!!! ONCE AGAIN, the selectmen govern our town & if this voting was not being down correctly it is there JOB to see that it is... The VOTE before this one someone in that office changed the voting hours from 8 am to 5pm, I believe its a law to have the voting 8am to 8pm. Does anyone know??

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  23. TOWNS PEOPLE please listen up, there is so much more going on than just the fact that CINDY DUNTON STOLE $$ from us!!! Many, many statutes, laws NEED to be followed by the town officials.

    What do you think about the selectmen deciding on their own, that Lois Libby doesn't have to pay the town back for not paying her health, dental & life insurance for 5+ years along with accepting many years of Christmas bonuses that were never approved by anyone???? They wrote in the recent newsletter their decision on this, BUT without a public meeting, posted to the public there is NO WAY they can make this decision. Don't you think the people of this town should have been the ones to vote & decide if Lois needs to pay this back?? Its after all OUR money she used. IMAGINE how much money YOU paid over those years for ALL 3 to have FULL HEALTH, DENTAL & LIFE INSURANCE!!!! Now none of them need to be responsible for this.. ARE THEY KIDDING? Oh don't forget Lois & Cindy got a $3 an hour raise, YUP, just so they could afford health insurance!! Then never paid a dime of it after the raise. $3... again ARE THEY KIDDING!!! Any former town managers, selectmen reading this that can look up the statues & laws for this & HELP us out here..

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  24. When will your NEW newsletter be out?

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  25. I also would like the above information regarding hopefully the new newsletter as it seems that many things are going on behind the scene that the residents are not made aware of. Example, we were not made aware that the town office was going to be closed for an entire week, at tax time. I don't know why we worry about paying our tax bill when the town office doesn't care ? Next, we didn't know the selectmen's meeting was cancelled for tonight? When was this decided ? What is the latest update from the town lawyer and or audit team ? Is Sheri Denis still working for the town at her high wage ? and if so, why ? Is the town behind on their payments to the school department ? Was this on Sheri Denis' watch ? What are Sheri Denis' qualification's , is she an accountant-CPA or not as it has been rumored ? Was she hired because she was a personal friend of Leona Smith and Nancy Hatch ? Is it true that 1st Selectmen , Buddy Belcher had an ill fated business dealing with the Tapley Farm and refused to return their deposit ? If so, what about ethic's that public officials are held accountable for ? Is our Concerned Citizen Group or The Fixers looking into this for our residents ? Or the state agency responsiable for ethics within town government? What is the latest news on Lois Libby and her error prone or ill gotten insurance payments or the raises or the Chrismas bonues that we not authorised by the VOTERS OF NEWBURGH. Has Skip Smith issued a public apology to Steve Porter for his reported verbel outburst and attack on him ? Where are the charges against Mr & Mrs Dunton, or anyone else ? What about the seperate charge of credit card fraud, has this been investigated further ? Has the stolen items from the town been returned by Cindy and Nancy ? Who is following up on all these things ? Can anyone let the voters know as we are, as usual, in the dark as the town apparently desires it to be so, so it is as it has been. I have been faithful to the community until late, now there are just to many questions without answers and crimes without justice,being served. PS. What is the deadline for the Dunton's property to be sold ? What about their assets ? What is the town's attorney doing to help us recover ? Did everyone's taxes go up ? HELP< HELP<

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  26. Let me field one of these questions.

    Sorry my taxes actually went down, I see improvement and a positive trend developing.

    You telling me all taxes did not go down?????

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  27. Dear Anonymous July 26, 2010 8:37 AM

    Any particular reason you did not sign your comment about your taxes going down? LOL

    Just curious!!!!!!!!!

    Anonymous July 19, 2010 7:38 AM

    You could be right would be interesting to see all property tax data to see if Anonymous July 26, 2010 8:37 AM and his tax story are swimming in fertilizer.

    Jim Hopkins

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  28. Mine when UP! They told us the valuation / mill rate & everything was the SAME... NOTHINGS CHANGED they said!!At that time they should have told people the exemptions that we get went from $13,000 to $10,000, that way people would have been expecting a difference. Would have been nice if they had put that in the newsletter they sent out. NEWS is suppose to be in the "newsletter" TOWN NEWS...how about "we'll be closing the office on such & such a date". Anyone know the cost of these newsletters?? Get a chance pick up a copy of the newsletters Carmel, Winterport & other small towns mail out, YOU'LL BE SHOCKED. You actually get NEWS about all the happenings in your TOWN. IMAGINE!!
    GOING ON 5 months & NOT any NEWS about the UPCOMING procedure for the DUNTONS...... UNREAL. 5 months & she's still running around town spending OUR $$$$, in a brand new leased vehicle, 12 DOGS, a new ATV, new metal roof on both houses, & GOD knows what else. But no assets frozen. Remember for the last 5-6 years while in the office YOU paid Cindy & Alan's taxes, insurance & everything else. Checks from $5,000 to $21,000 made out to herself or Alan (made out & signed by her)LOL EVERY month in 2009.... I saw copies from the bank that the "Concerned citizens of Newburgh" have. I had heard Cindy covered it well, BUT upon talking to the group I saw EVERYTHING clearly as they have documentation of it all. Public information people, public information, don't hesitate to GO ASK. Get copies of the warrants now, see what's being spent & why.. WE NEED TO CHECK. Call & ask the town officials the questions in a previous post here today about the treasurer etc, I just called she gets ARE YOU SITTING DOWN? $32 an hour........

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  29. You are clearly upset and for good reason but honestly when you rant like this and then do not sign your name you automaticly loose some/most credibility. If the Fixers did a better job of identifying themselves upfront and in the mass mailing they would have had allot more traction at the start.

    How many times do people have to be told if you do not sign them many others do not believe them. So you have facts there is no chance you will be sued for what you are saying, you believe everything you write here.

    Next logical step is what????? anyone, Buhler, Buhler?

    That's right sign your blog or it is just a blob of poop.

    Sincerely
    Mark Twain

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  30. So, if everyone signs there name that means what they wrote is TRUE??? Explain.

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  31. To the poster who wants names ---and end up like Steve Porter in front of his community , at the last selectmen's meeting getting yelled at with cuss words by a selectmen and the other selectmen not saying a word about this unbelievable display by one of them, our public officials. Oh yea, sign your name, thats what I would want to do. At this point, it is better to have the facts and have the newsletter, confirm or deny as the case may be. I recently heard that Cindy Dunton is related to Leona Smith and that Sheri Denis works with Leona Smith and that Leona Smith helped her daughter purchased some town , tax acquired property at a reduced amount from the asking price. Could it be that she and the town manager enjoyed favortism with this transaction ? It certainly needs to be reviewed.
    How about Cindy and Alan Dunton, how and when did they register their new lease vehicles and with whom ? This also needs to be reviewed so prove or disprove favortism which is against the law for any public official, to show.

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  32. POSITIVE TREND, SORRY THAT WILL ONLY HAPPEN WHEN
    ALL THE FOLKS WHO HAVE BROKEN THE LAW, ARE BEHIND BARS WHERE THEY ALL BELONG. WE NEED TO HAVE THIS HAPPEN SO WE CAN INDEED MOVE ON BUT NOT UNTIL JUSTICE IS SERVED.

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  33. to the blogger on July 25, 2010, 6:40 am. I cannot understand how you can bring someone's personal/business life into this. Imagine yourself in Buddy Belchers shoes, or any of the selectmen's shoes for that matter. I sincerely believe that your public service and your private life are two separate entities unless the paths cross. It seems very easy for people to make unbelievable insinuations, accusations and carry on the rumors and then not leave you name. I agree with another post that commented that when you say such things and don't leave a name it automatically makes me (and others) think that your comments aren't even legitimate. It tough times out there right now for everyone and every town. Ours especially considering what happened here. The worst thing we (residents) can do is get a "mob mentality" going. I totally agree, mistakes were made, and some areas need to change, but a lot of you folks sound like you want to drag someone out and lynch them. I have a growing sympathy for our selectment for being raked over the coals again and again for each and every decision they try to make. Maybe everyone should take a step back and calm down. Just one question for the blogger, you asked so many questions so early in the morning, have you thought about how much coffee you're drinking - just kidding ;)
    Renee O'Donald

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  34. Sorry, Renee but politics and leadership is serious business. You take an oath, you are in a trusted position. What you do affects the entire community. You leave behind your private life for public. That's the way it is. That's America.

    The man in public life has a private life that is not exclusively his own. It is assumed that the people's right to know includes the right to know all, or almost all, about their chosen leaders: health, habits, character and foibles. The public's curiosity is insatiable, and often for good reason. If a politician behaves badly in private matters, he might act the same way in his public duties. That, at any rate, is the theory that has always linked scandal and history, low gossip and high statesmanship.

    Read more: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,898528,00.html#ixzz0uva5eyk6
    Enough said ?

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  35. People have choices to make. You give up your private life when you decide to become a public official. If you want or need to do wrong,because of the times, you need to step aside and allow another to assume the trusted leasdership role for our town. Doesn't this make pure sense ? Just step down while you have a little pride left but please be respectfull, honest and take care of that neighbors private matter too. Does anyone really think this is to much to ask of our public officials or for that matter, the president of the United States, or your own, next door neighbor ?

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  36. What gutless cowardly individuals to post such vile hateful comments and not list their names.

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  37. Still disagree with the previous post's regarding private life vs public service. Maybe in a position like senator, governor, etc. It's the selectmen position in a town of less than 2,000 people. Maybe the people who are the most critical (of course they never leave their names) should have their private life evaluated by the public. I guess if you're going to stand in judgement of someone you yourself should be judged as well. There's the famous saying those who live in glass houses should not throw stones. I find most comments on this blog petty and immature. Our town has to start moving forward, stop rehashing it over and over, like someone complaining about a bad divorce, move along. Make corrections, make changes, create new policies, get out of the mud slinging habit, it's totally unprofessional.
    Renee O'Donald

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  38. There is a blog section called hash and bash this one is I thought for the Newsletter ideas.

    As it says at the top of this section.

    "Prep for new newsletter
    We are preparing to put out another newsletter. We are looking at including a survey with questions about having a library, whether to consider building a community building versus using the elementary school, going from three Selectmen to five, a detailed line item budget, the town officials being hired at the town meeting by the townspeople.

    We welcome suggestions you may have."

    There are actually a few comments regarding ideas for newsletter topics, would it be possible to concentrate on these and other new issues that may be useful and not merely another all out personal attack full of the same old data or topics and obviously written by the same people again and again and again.

    We have an opportunity here to communicate to all at once and I am quite sure most residents have had an idea or suggestion over the years and wondered how others in town thought about it.

    Something to improve town operations, suggestions to shift the tax burden away from residential property taxes, how to cut costs, how to raise money (non tax money), how to develop a community center, recreation, hiking trails, job creation, parks, playgrounds, community gardens, skating rinks, neighborhood watch, good neighbor program, elderly assist volunteer groups, business development etc. etc. Things that help the community overall.

    I for one am interested in new news and suggestions to improve the community, if this newsletter is going to be nothing but the same old sh-t over and over again then take me off the list I don't need it.

    If I ever want a good dose of people repeating themselves again and again I can just come back to this site.

    Jim Hopkins

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  39. The Town of Newburgh would really benefit an all-inclusive website like Hampden has. That way folks can simply check that for updates and town happenings.

    I know we were personally caught with our pants down when our vehicles registration expired and town hall was closed for a week last month, unbeknownst to us. No biggie, but it would have been nice to have a little warning.

    We no longer buy the BDN because we can get it on line for free, have no TV because, again, can get pretty much everything on line, and I have a feeling we are not the only ones who are looking to the internet more and more for our news.

    I'm still floored that the Newburgh school is going to be the site of the town office, especially in this economy. If anything the town's financial belt should be getting tighter, especially in light of the $200,000 theft. Yes things are going to be uncomfortable for a while, but who in our town isn't a hurting unit right now? When I think of the town office over there all I can think of are things like: Heating bill, building and grounds maintenance, plowing that puppy out, security...all extra $$$ that comes from where now?

    Some roads are an absolute mess, fire dept is staffed by wonderful volunteers, no police of our own, and who knows where ambulances come in from. To me anyway, securing these basic taxpayer-funded services should be a priority.

    --Kathy Perin :)

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  40. Kathy,
    You are correct the school/town office will drive additional costs to the town (no matter what anyone tells you) and unfortunately there are no substantial new revenue sources to make up the difference, take a wild guess who will be paying for these additional costs and what the source of them will be.

    Now on top of this it was reported in the BDN that the district expects the average per home tax increase to be somewhere around $3-400/year to pay for all the extras at the new Hampden Academy. Common sense tells me that some households will be $200 or less and some will be around $400 and some will be in the $600+ range. Now thats the first year!!!! It does not usually go down from there. If you take the average $400 increase and divide it by your current tax burden you will get your true % increase and this is going to be a big out of proportion number for the times we live in and the services we recieve in Newburgh.

    Our town is in the worst position to swallow this kind of increase, not since we built two world class middle schools in the district 10 miles apart (2 principals, 2 administrative staffs, to gym's, two cafiterias and so on)have we faced this kind of school spending pressure and from my perspective the timing could not be worse.

    Sincerely
    Samuel Clemments

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  41. Here here Mr. Clemments!

    Don't even get me started on that school. Yes, it was decrepit and needed to be rebuilt. I get that. BUT those blueprints and their accompanying price tag should have been sent back to the drawing board until they came within a range we could all agree on and afford. The whole thing is way WAY out of line and wreaks of the very excess spending principles that has brought this entire country to its financial knees.

    Our public school system needs to teach finance 101, how to balance a check book, and no student should be allowed to progress to the next grade until they pass it, because the majority of the voters have failed us in this regard.

    ...totally off topic I know, but this subject in particular really tweeks my toad. :D

    --Kathy Perin :)

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  42. I didn't understand todays news article, we are 3 school payments behind and it started in March, Cindy Dunton was gone in March ? Oh yea, I bet Mr. Tapley being the victim doesn't agree with your reasoning as an excuse for dishonesty. This being my first and my last post, but I've said what I've thought. I do hope that all voters do unite and make something happen, soon. All this is so so wrong.

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  43. Samuel Clemens Stupid

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  44. To Renee: Are you serious ? Maybe your not drinking enough coffee ? LOL seriously, you honestly believe its ok to take what is not yours, because of hard-times and us being only 2000 residents ? Does your employees know of this? Good luck with that. I work out of town some so I was not home to reply immediately, but I was in total shock. A public official is the towns leader and is held to a higher standed, Please revisit your civic lessons and town government and you will see it is the rule of the land ? Just Amazing that you are trying to justify this ---You must also believe that Cindy Dunton's deeds are ok, also ? Well, sorry, to many people are living hand to mouth and a theft is a theft and you cannot rationalize it out, period..... We need new people to lead this town and we need justice for all who have harmed us or our neighbor. A watcher or a do'er, it is the same. True, our community needs to get together and make changes and uncover all the crimes that have been or are contining against us. It is against the law and God.

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  45. Hey, I've got an idea, lets move ahead with just us, residents. We can do as good a job as has been done, that is for sure. We don't need trusted public officials - gone bad as they just end up taking advantage of the residents. I know for a fact we have some mighty smart people living and being quiet in Newburgh who, we need to convince them to help us out in our town government. Our time of need is now. so come on quiet-smart people, make yourself known and be involved, it is your community as well and is only as good as you help make it. THINK ABOUT IT.

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  46. What we need is a "town meeting" of the residents. Call our own town meeting & come together to find out what our TOWNS people want, where they want to go from here & how to get things changed. I know there are plenty of people willing to volunteer their time or serve on a committee!! I agree with the previous posts, we do need to move on, BUT we need to deal with what has happened first, we do need change, but its been almost 5 months & nothing's changed, we do need new policies, but no ones listening. Most are not here to bash they are just totally frustrated & have no other means to vent!!! I give them credit whether they sign their names or not. Speak up!!! Do any of you feel you would be interested in a PUBLIC TOWN MEETING of the RESIDENTS of Newburgh???

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  47. I THINK A TOWN MEETING IS A GREAT IDEA HOWEVER I WOULD LIKE TO SEE THE MODERATOR BE SOMEONE FROM THE STATES ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE TO GUIDE THE RESIDENTS AND OFFER SUGGESTIONS THAT MEET THE LEGAL MEANS. AS IT IS, WE WOULD HAVE TO ATTEND - IN BODY ARMOR. AND STILL SOME OF OUR QUIET RESIDENTS WOULD REMAIN " SHY' AND NOT VOICE THEIR OPINION, IF WE CAN EVEN GET THEM TO ATTEND. HOW DO WE GET EVERYONE INVOLVED SO THEY CAN FEEL, IMPORTANT TOO, AS THEY ARE ? AS WE HAVE BEEN EXPERIENCING, THERE REMAINS, NO CONTROL, QUESTIONS PASSED OVER OR THE PERSON, NOT CALLED UPON AND THE TIME WATCHING. I SINCERELY HOPE PEOPLE WILL COME FORWARD WITH THIS SUGGESTION AND HELP AS IT IS A GREAT IDEA AND WE NEED TO GET ALL OUR RESIDENTS, TOGETHER FOR ONCE AND SEE IF WE CAN MAKE SOME IMPROVEMENTS AND STAY---WITHIN THE LAW,WITHIN POLICY AND PROCEDURES, ETC. THERE HAVE BEEN CRAZY MOTIONS MADE, OUTSIDE OF THE BUDGET PROCESS THAT NEED TO BE DISOLVED WHICH IS ONE REASON THAT IF WE ALL BAND TOGETHER, WE MAY BE ABLE TO GET SOMEONE FROM AUGUSTA TO HELP US ALL AND I MEAN---ALL OUR RESIDENTS NOT JUST THE OUTSPOKEN ONES. MAYBE, THE CONCERNED CITIZEN GROUP CAN HELP AS WE ARE ALL " CONCERNED CITIZENS" I FOR ONE WILL CALL AND CHECK IT OUT AS YOU AND YOUR NEIGHBOR, SHOULD TOO.

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  48. Can you imagine trying to hold a town meeting? I can, and my vision of it involves Jerry Springer as moderator and those bald bouncer dues to keep folks with pitchforks and burning torches at bay...

    :D -- Luc Perin

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  49. Yes, def. a great idea for a town meeting of the citizens. I agree fully that it needs to have a moderator independent of the town who has answers to some of the legal questions people will have. Anonymous please check into that & see who would be willing to help with this in Augusta, I will check with the "Concerned Citizen Group" to get the ball rolling. I have met with them a few times & found them to have ALL documentation for each & every question I had, be it about the "Town Watch" newsletter they put out or anything else I had a question about. If they didn't know, they go to the right source & find the answer. I feel everyone should be working with these people. You can go here & contact the group http://townofnewburgh.info/tn/?page_id=2
    On the other hand maybe we could have 1 meeting with a good moderator, have an agenda, get people involved, see how many are interested, take their questions, get people working on different agendas for different issues in town & go from there. We really all can help!!

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  50. I have never posted here until today but I feel compelled to clarify something that was previously posted. As far as I know, the only way that Leona Smith and Cindy Dunton are related is through their "in-laws". Leona's mother-in-law (Phyllis Smith) and Cindy Dunton's mother-in-law (Hazel Dunton) were sisters (both are deceased). Secondly, I was at the selectmen's meeting when the bids for the property on the Lindsey Road were opened. Scott Dow, Leona's son-in-law, bid and was awarded the property for $20,000. These were sealed bids, not opened until that night at the meeting. As a matter of fact, if I remember correctly, there were no other bids other than Scott's even though it was advertised in the paper. Leona Smith abstained from voting on awarding the bid to Scott as she should have.

    Some of you know me as a member of the "concerned citizens" group and know that I can be outspoken when I feel that justice is not being served. I also, however, feel that it is important to speak up when something false is being said as well. I also believe one should try (we are all human after all)to never say anything until one has checked out the information and found it to be the truth.

    I agree that we need to resolve a lot of issues in our town but that we also need to move forward by focusing on what needs to be done to better our community. That is why, I for one, have volunteered to help with the upcoming Newburgh Festival that will be held at the Newburgh School on Sat., Sept. 11th from 12-4 pm.

    There will be activities/games/food for the kids/grandkids/adults. There will be tables to rent ($10 per table)for crafters or anyone else with something to sell. A spaghetti supper and dance will be held at the school in the evening. This would be one way that we could all help our town and enjoy a positive event. With all the differences of opinions we may have, I believe everyone in this town wants to see good things happening in Newburgh. I happen to think this is a very good thing for our town. If you do as well, please plan to be there. The money from this goes to a great cause - assisting Newburgh residents with buying fuel for their homes. A big thank you to Julie Leavitt for organizing this.

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  51. I believe the legal term to be " at arms length" and it is never wise to become involved without using an attorney for the mere fact that it could be considered, " a conflict of interest " even though, nothing was improper as far as the folks involved. It is the perception, and any good attorney would advise you of same. Best to always have representation with any real estate transaction and do things legally so there is never any question, otherwise you leave yourself open. To futher comment, I must say it seems that there are a lot of friends, family and relatives involved in our local government and this is never, I repeat never, a wise thing to do. If you folks want to start fresh, I would recommend you start bringing in new fresh faces as soon as possible. Don't be afaid, they won't hurt you, they just might help make Newburgh a viable town again.

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  52. The conflict law prohibits all public employees from seeking or receiving bribes, gifts, promises, or anything else of value in return for an official favor or a promise of action or inaction. In addition , it prohibits fraud or allowing anyone else to commit fraud. Action or inaction is sufficient evidence that the public employee is acting with corrupt intent.

    Engaging in favoritism by a public official. see Standards of Conduct. It would be an unwarranted privilege.

    IF ANY OF THE ABOVE ACTS HAVE TAKEN PLACE, IT IS YOUR RESPONSIABILTY AS A CITIZEN TO REPORT IT. THE ABOVE IS IN DIRECT VIOLATION OF THE LAW. IT IS YOUR TOWN, YOUR STATE AND YOUR, AMERICA. HOME OF THE BRAVE BECAUSE OF THE BRAVE.

    YOUR STATE AGENCIES WANT AND NEED TO HEAR FROM YOU AS WELL AS YOUR REPRESENTATIVES. THAT IS WHAT THEY DO. CALL OR WRITE BUT CONTACT THEM.

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  53. Thank you Roseanna, I didn't think any of the rumors where rooted in facts. I totally agree with Roseanna, that we have to all want to move forward together. Newburgh is a very nice town and a great place to live, lets stay focused on getting us back on track. As far as the real estate transaction is concerned, it certainly sounds like the laws governed the advertising and sealed bid opening were followed and Leona abstained from voting which, as Roseanna said, exactly what she should have done.
    Renee O'Donald

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  54. Excuse me, Back on track is exactly where we don't want to be. Some folks may be contented with what has been done and want things to remain the same and in the same hands.
    For the betterment of OUR community, I put forth our need for new faces with new idea's and a conviction for honestly with the well-being of all our residents, at hand. We cannot move ahead while the dirty deeds of yesterday still are surfacing and the same people, remain behind the till and in complete denial. A love of our community requires, immediate change and safeguards put forth and in seeking this, I hope that our residents come together to make this change, happen. Then and only then, can we hope to move, ahead and not, on the same old track. I for one will remain committed to this end and in seeking justice for the wrongs that have been committed against our tax paying citizens regardless, by whom, when or where.

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  55. YOUR STATE AGENCIES WANT AND NEED TO HEAR FROM YOU AS WELL AS YOUR REPRESENTATIVES. THAT IS WHAT THEY DO. CALL OR WRITE, BUT CONTACT THEM WIH YOUR CONCERNS. IF YOU DO NOT SAY ANYTHING IT BECOME, ALRIGHT.

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please be couteous!

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