Monday, April 29, 2013

Sandwich Town Meeting has controversial articles in the warrant


I invite everyone to weigh in on any of the 26 articles comprising our 2013 Sandwich Annual Town Meeting warrant--meeting to take place at the high school on Monday, May 6th--and the one article on Tuesday night's Special Town Meeting warrant, a debt exclusion request for the proposed public safety building and fire substation.

What's likely to consume most of our time are the following articles:

Article 14 - Recommended Town Charter Revisions - For my take on this, click here. Other than changing the town clerk to an appointed position, I don't have much to offer on this article. Some people are a little worked up about the library trustee changes.

Article 19 - Medical Marijuana Moratorium - Short of having a sampling table in the hallway which would lead to a very relaxed conversation on this article, it's likely we'll have some rather lively debate and heated moments on this one. The town manager will explain at length how this doesn't mean forever.

The following are petition articles signed by at least ten voters:

Article 20 - Local Option Meals Tax Program - This went down last year, but like Whack-A-Mole, it's back again. It's only a cup of coffee a month, they'll say. Death by a thousand cuts (or in this case, a thousand cups of coffee). Here's my recycled take on this article.

Article 21 - Separate & Privatize DPW Divisions - Somebody got dissed at the dump and is now proposing that the DPW be carved up into four pieces and each piece farmed out to the lowest bidder.

Article 22 - Impose Marina Waiting List Fee - If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. If it stops moving, subsidize it.--Ronald Reagan / If it moves too slowly, throw a $25 fee on it.--Citizens Petition

Article 23 - Beach Parking Receipts to Renourishment Fund - This would set aside 20% of the beach parking and sticker receipts for projects at our salt water beaches, including dune renourishment.

Article 24 - Campaign Financing at Federal Level - Approval of this article would show our support for overturning the Citizens United U.S. Supreme Court decision, aka "Corporations are people, too."--Mitt Romney

Article 25 - Close Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station - This article intends to gather momentum in the effort to close the nuclear plant in Plymouth. The debate could be interesting.

The following is the article slated for Tuesday night's Special Town Meeting:

Article 1 - Debt Exclusion for Joint Public Safety Building - Here's the grandaddy of all of the town meeting articles. $30 million to build the new public safety building and fire substation. See my post on this article here.

64 comments:

  1. Carl Johansen on $25 waiting fee to remain on a list for dock space.

    We have about 1000 names on a list waiting for boat space at a dock. Some have died and gone to heaven a long time ago, others do not even have a driver license, some do not even own a boat.
    Record keeping can be a costly part of doing buseness as a Marina and the idea behind the fee is to once and for all determine who actually has the ability to own a boat, has a legal resident,is still alive and a whole bunch of other good reasons to actually limit the list to those that once placed on a list are a verifiable customer.

    It will take a long period of dilligant notification to every name on the present list to in fact determine the validity of every name as to are they living, age, resident of Sandwich to name a few unknowns.

    Once the intial process is completed and a new list is generated that makes sense, a lesser fixed cost could be generated to keep this list accurate and up todate.

    The intial $25 dollar charge is to pay for the time and effort of the marina Staff and is welcomed as such by the present Harbor Master to provide a quality service for the boat owners who now use the marina and any future ones as well.

    Most every town has a waiting list of users that each one has to pay to remain on a list for any future use they may wish to use.

    It is time that the wheels of progress catch up to a slow moving business model and give the Harbor Master what he wants.

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    1. Carl, how many slips come open each year? One? A dozen?

      When one comes open, how long does it take to call the first person on the list? If they don't answer, leave a message. If a week goes by, send a letter, wait another week and, if no reply or the mail is returned to sender, scratch out the name. Repeat the process using the second name on the list.

      This is neither rocket science nor computer science. What's the value of having a list of 500 that has been scrubbed and is completely accurate when only a few slips open up each year?

      A perfect example of solving a problem that doesn't exist.

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    2. Randy it is not all that simple as you indicted.

      The marina would spend time and effort , along with money to go down the list in the manner you describe.
      The size of the slips as apposed to the size of the boat are also part of the equation. Having a clean list of names and the sizes of the boat they are useing gives the harbormaster a little more to work with if he knows that the names on his list are all legit and actually can rent a space for the year.

      The process you subscribe too may work, but the time element to go through that process would cost the marina money for not having a free space rentable when one comes available.

      Lets say for example a slip is available today and we go to the list and the first name does not respond at all in a two week period of time, the letter sent out to prospective customer is no longer around for what ever reason. So now we send out another one and we get a responce after a two week notice, this person does not have a boat that will fit into the space available for renting.So we pick another name from the top and this one is not old enough to drive yet, Now you can see the original list has names, but little else to help the harbor master fill slips when they become available. The idea behind the scrubbed version is to provide a more meaninful list that the harbormaster can work from to in fact optimize his cash flow for the season, which under the present list he does not have, at least that was what I took away from the conversation I had with the present harbormaster.

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    3. Do we not have contracts for these slips? If so, eliminate the time lag you describe by working to qualify the next slip renter BEFORE the prior contract expires.

      If they want to have a thoroughly cleansed waiting list, I'm not against that either. Just do it. Why should people on the list have to pay a waiting fee? This is one of the responsibilities of the harbor master.

      Can you imagine how it would go over if I lost control of my CPA business client list and asked all of the clients I could identify to pay me $25 in order to create a new list of clients?

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    4. Randy you are correct it is the harbormasters job, but he did not have complete control over how it was made up . You on the other hand did have control on who your clients may be. This is like going from a paper recording entry to a computor . More time, more cost to set up initally, but in the end a better process for every one

      The list has not been updated over the years and needs to be placed into some sort of data base to work from . Your business is most likely in that mode of operation, however the town fathers just did not apply the same logic when the original list was prepared many moons ago/ The new harbor master is attempting to bring that part of the business plan into a workable plan that is completly on a data base that will provide all the basic information he needs to work with and at the same time make it revelant to what it actually is today.

      Once it is done a small fee will be charged to keep your name on the list, that will assure anyone who has decided to put a boat in a Sandwich Slip that they have a number and once it is called they will have a place to put there boat.

      The majority of towns that rent slips have charged boaters a fee to be on an active list of possible renters. It is one way they can recoup financial losses and has been an affective tool in stemming those other losses.The intial cost to clean the list, should be born by every one who want to rent a slip and in the end if the intial charge is $25.00 so be it.

      That does not mean that to remain on the clean list should be $25.00 every year and it most likely will not, but who knows.

      Operating the marina for the Army Corp does not provide any money to the town of value, as you know.

      This new harbor master is attempting to update and put in more slips where he can and this along with his operating cost is attempting to defray the association of cost to the actual account it affects.The updating of the list and associated cost for the slips does just that.

      Keep in mind should the Army Corp decide to zero out his account, which they can do every three years , He would need some way to capture new money to still maintain the total operation. That would mean he would have to start from zero in the bank, which could mean a loss in service to the public at large.

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    5. Carl, too much explanation for a fee that's not justified. Given how long someone will be on the list, it is not practicable to update the data everytime someone trades up to a bigger boat (which potentially changes the slip that could be rented), finds a slip somewhere else, gives up boating in place of flushing ten $20 bills down the toilet every Friday night (a much cheaper alternative, by the way), or gets a new cell phone number.

      The database's accuracy will quickly deteriorate and we'll end up in the same situation except for the fact that people will be shelling out money to maintain an inaccurate database.

      And before you tell me that you'll have to fill out an updated form every year to send in along with your $25 (and that will keep the database accurate), the reality is that the only thing that's really important and necessary is to have a good phone number and address on file. That's all. And guess who already has such a list that can be cross-referenced? The town clerk and the town assessor.

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    6. By the way. See you tonight. Thank you for your unending advocacy for this town. You're a real standup guy.

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    7. Randy does that include those who are not residents of Sandwich??

      We will see you tonight and in my book you are also a real stand up guy, along with being a true trusted representative of all the people.

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  2. Carl Johansen would say to Mr. Hunt and fellow citizens of Sandwich.

    The warrant articles and petition articles are a little convoluted and really to long in some cases to be objectivly discussed, unless one gets a copy of the warrant and read it prior to town meeting.

    I was sort of hoping that some discusion would occur here, from a more objective point of veiw.
    To those that come to town meeting and pick up the warrant for the first time , you may well find yourself, searching for answers, with out the benefit of being prepared.

    It is still not to late to engage in some of the more interesting
    topics, that will be leaving many shaking there heads.

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    1. I understand that you are knowledgeable about this Town and the process of local government, but really, you want more objective discussion. Maybe you are correct in your desire, but certainly, the major boards of this Town are the ones that convolute and draw out issues, then confuse them, confusing the public. Plain and simple for some articles, just read the warrant quickly, listen to the boring "same old people", and then vote. Every time a supposed Town Leader proposes something, it is fraught with peril. That is why, I learned long ago; if you don't understand something, then vote NO. On the new taj mahal, VOTE NO, and vote several times if needed.

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    2. Now now, let's be kind. The Town Fathers and Mothers try their best.

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  3. Anon of 1;58 pm. They do try their best and they have the courage to run for office unlike some of us who are loud penned cowards.

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  4. Carl Johansen would say to loud penned coward[your words] that mixing words of courage and cowards in the same one line take away the meaning of both words, in the manner you have posted.

    As long as we have those that hide in the shadows of anonymous calling those who run for a office, courageous and those who use there names are cowards[especially when they are only attempting to hold those that had the courage to run for office keep the promises they made to the people] is a little bit of irony.

    We all know that you are not a very courageous, as you admitted here and that is fine, now on the other hand if you were to put your name to the post[other then anonymous ] that could change the whole meaning of your less then objective view point.

    For me, running for any office is matter of choices we all make in life and the only courage comes from being able to be the person you told every one you would be , along with representing all of the people, all of the time. The courage comes from the inner self of how ethical we remain as an elected official and do we compromise our values, to make back door deals that we may find fincially benefitting to ourselves. Now that for me that is where the courage comes into play.

    Any one can run for an elected office [personal choice]in todays world, but those that attempt to hold them to the standards they set, to get elected, have a higher calling in assuring that they do not corrupt the system and the democratic process of government.

    You may be correct in calling yourself a loud penned coward, but please do not include those that have the courage to stand up and be accounted for in the same manner you describe, simply because they have the courage of their conviction to follow what others gave there lives for. Freedom of speach, freedom of religion, freedom of gendar, When you put your name to what you believe and hold dear and true to your heart, that takes courage my friend.

    Nice way of sidetracking the original topic of Town meeting warrant articles.


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    1. See you tonight Carl. I know you will be brave enough to spend our money, or at least try. Too bad we can't vote you out because you won't run for office. You, in my opinion are just afraid that the people don't agree with you. Just don't get angry; Now SMILE!

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    2. Mr. Johansen, Mr. Johansen. So often you suggest that others "read" or "re-read". Perhaps you should try doing the same. If I understand your comment of May 6 at 8:59 AM, you "would be saying to loud penned coward (your words)", I believe you are attempting to write at my post of May 5 at 11:42 AM. Just to make it clear, I meant use us whose definition in part is "myself and others". And to further define the statement used the word "some". I am not the "some" as I have had the courage to run, and, on three occasions win a run at elective office. So let's be clear, although you may feel I do not have courage, I did have the enough respect for the citizens to go out there and run. As for the words on courage and cowardice being used in the same sentence. I think you quite often use phrases that sound good but don't amount to a hill of guano. I was using both words as a comparison. I believe that the irony of this debate is that somehow embarrassing people, attacking them as individuals is somehow a good thing. Quite often I find that those empty barrels that pick things apart are not willing to formally put them to the test in front of voters. Those that might call someone un-American for not voting or for bulleting the ballot, those that fail to get on boards but only give their opinions in newspapers and cameras, those that speak of women as though they should be relegated to their homes; these people are harmful to our democracy. You are a good person, but I feel your actions are sometimes less than good.

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  5. Carl Johansen would say to 1217, You will not need to be concerned as your term will be up rather shortly. You can be assured,along with surprised, as to how many, in fact agree with some of us that are not afraid to get out of shadow world of Anonymous and speak.

    As you look down on the floor tonight, some will be smiling and some will not. Some will come away with justice prevailing and others will not. The anonymous bullies that attempt to brow beat others into thinking they are serving the community when all they are serving are themselves.The same old speech we have heard from those that attempt to tell every one one thing, but do another and when they get called on it they play mickey the dunce and pull out the why do you not run for office card.

    You had no problem spending my money to the tune of $50,000 for the SEIC and then did not have the courage to tell us where and who got it.

    Now don't get angry, I will be smiling tonight thats for sure, you do the same.

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  6. As some of you may be good with numbers, I would ask a question. Last night, we were told by some that to vote against the meal tax increase by 1/4% would cost the Town about $200,000.

    1/4% is .0025
    .0025 X $80,000,000 = $200,000
    I concluded that 1.4% $200,000 to = 6% to $4,800,000

    Am I to understand that the gross from meal sales in this town is 24 X $80,000,000 or $1,920,000,000? That's quite a number and if true, maybe we should raise the tax 24 more times to relieve the tax burden on all of us. Tell me where my calculations went wrong, please, someone. Thanks

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    1. Of the 6% that is collected on the meals tax, how much comes back to us. I am sure its not the entire amount. How much is it. Anyone?

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    2. The entire 6.25% goes into the state's general fund. None of it comes back to the town in a direct fashion. Local aid, which includes both general government and school aid, comes to the town via the state's budget each year. The 0.75% local option meals tax that was just passed at town meeting will be collected by our restaurants and any other business that sells meals (like the American Legion, for example) and turned over to the Dept of Revenue. All of that local options tax will be returned to the town quarterly.

      The first day the tax will be levied is July 1, 2013. The first payment will be received after the meals tax is reported and paid for September. The September reporting deadline is October 20th, so we should see a deposit by November for the July-to-September quarter.

      If the estimate of $300K annually is correct, you'd expect somewhere around $125K to $140K of it to be generated during the summer tourist season.

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  7. This comment was by Greg, which I accidentally deletetd:

    now that you guys have slapped each other on the back, I will say that last night, for once, in my opinion, Johansen was truly a stand up for bringing up the amendment on the charter. Randy, your speech was beyond great. May I slap both of you, figuratively, on the back.

    as an aside, I voted on yes to the amendment because, above and beyond the reasons in Randy's speech, I thought that the whole thing was a ploy by the democrats because they felt that another candidate was more deserving for having experience within the town clerk's office. They called it a "popularity contest". As I understand the meaning of "popularity contest", it is a competition for popular support....isn't that what a elected position is?

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    1. I think your point is that all elected positions are popularity contests. If so, you are correct.

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  8. Carl Johansen would say to Mr. Hunt that the peoples voices were heard loud and clear last night . I was smiling the whole evening as I reflected on the evenings peoples partiction articles , except for one was over whelmingly adopted. If it is right for the
    benefit of the whole town , then we all win in the end. That has to be a good thing from where I am looking in on.

    I also am indebted to you for placing the right wording before town meeting that reflects a more democratic process as to how we govern ourselves.

    Sandwich, has been negleting to many areas of concerns for far to long and it is time we all get on the same page towards a futuristic town ship that includes all facets of how our town operates itself.

    The power of the people can change the outlooks of how we go about our daily business and if the common good is the ultimate goal we all win something from the struggle to do the right thing.

    I also thank my fellow town meeting members for making some historical changes that may now have our elected officials take a different approach as to how they govern.

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  9. Last night's town meeting was a reflection of the community. It was heartening for me to see different people speak at the podium. I think last night's debate was by far the best I have ever seen at Town Meeting in well over 40 years.

    The four Selectmen who were in favor of the new safety building should be ashamed at their inability to convince the people of its necessity. In the long run, we will all lose when we go to pay the piper the same amount for less of a building.

    Any Selectmen who thought that the people would buy this are simply dreaming. From the beginning, this whole program was a set up. Form a committee, pack it with Town employees, site it where the Town Manager wants it, ask for everything, don't listen to what people suggest, don't answer their questions.

    This was a needed project that has failed. The four Selectmen who caused it to fail should all be put out of office. We should get a fresh new Town Administration who will be bent on increasing the tax base. We need people to be on committees that get real answers instead of skewing their reports. Its a wonder how we could not come up with another plan. One person asked this at a meeting that I attended, never receive and answer. I can't believe that their was only one alternative that could be presented to the people. I can't believe that our leaders have so much distrust of the people that they think they could push this through.

    I voted yes because we need a safety building now, but I regretted not having a better option for such a building. I always thought for 30 million, we might be able to do more than a huge edifice that is farther from the population that calls for its need.

    Everything said, I hope that the Selectmen jump right on this and come up with a plan B. A plan they should have had many months ago.

    One more thing, all Selectmen should be aware that people were for or against this project based on their brain and gut and that they should never be ridiculed in public. One Selectmen owes the Public an apology; I will look for it at the next Selectmen's meeting.

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    1. One thing is for sure, the people spoke. Thanks so much Mr. Pannorfi for you intuitive understanding of the people in this town. Its time for town administrators and the other selectmen to understand that people may be ambivalent to what goes on in town, but they are far from dumb. They should listen to the people. This boondoggle of a proposal doesn't serve anyone. Those on the BOS who supported it, at a minimum, should resign.

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  10. Carl Johansen would say to L Smythe given that four supported this proposal and one did not and has not for his entire career as a selectmen, it also speaks to some obvious discepency/s in the whole process he has fought from the very beginning and was major factor for it failing the last time in my opinion. The lack of support into applying guidance of this project by the combined forces of the selectmen, spoke loud and clear as to its eventual failure. I have supported this project for a very long time as well for a littany of reasons.The final proposal, however, still has me concerned that some one did not do the home work to sell it
    and that is what is needed when all, every thing any one looks at is the number of dollars. Based on just the dollar factor it was bound to fail, but it did not have to be that way, had another approach had been taken in selling it.

    I must disagree with some of what you posted above. We the tax payers have paid for three studies over the past number of years . Thousands of dollars from our taxes.

    Aside as to who may have been given the contracts to do the studies , all studies have shown the location where the present proposal was sited as the best location.For all of the concerned reasons you heard last night.

    This debate has been going on for over 20 years now and I would agree that having just one plan was not benificial to having this pass. Another troubling thing for me also was the financing of this project at a 4 percent rate. Given where the interest rates are at present the final cost of the project should have been at least 7 million dollars less over the life of the bond then what was presented at town meeting.

    The next step in this process may be to concentrate on just one safety[ the police department] and how to establish a more up todate model of a building that is secure and safe for those who may work out it. Lay the foundation for the new fire building at the same time and then when the time is right for every one build the rest??

    One thing for sure, we do need, are people who sit in judgment as to what and how it gets built to have there eyes and ears more open to what the taxpayers are saying.

    The longer we as a town put off the need, the time will come when mother nature will make the decision for us and then those that did not do there homework to sell this need in a more open manner will have the opportunty to rebuild the whole coastal area, from federal disaster relief money

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    1. I see, in your opinion, the four in support didn't do enough to promote their side causing it to lose, then the other who was against was a major factor, the people who by more than 3 to 1 voted against it did not understand. Not to worry, you were there protecting us from ourselves. How can the people speak loud and clear at Town Meeting then not speak loud and clear at the polls?

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  11. I believe the general consensus was that the location, size and money were the issues. The location: Did anyone ask the fire personnel how they feel about having to get all the way to Town Neck from their new location? When people were talking about this being an issue, it made sense to me. The size: I agree, it's too big. Did any of the selectmen listen when people gave their very well-thought out opinions on spreading smaller stations around town? That made sense to me too. The money: Is an issue. I've cut my household budget every year for 5 straight years. I'm down to bare bones and basic cable, and that "cup of coffee a day" mentality of tax increases from government in general is taking a toll, whether the Selectmen think it's true or not.

    Do we need to something.. heck yes! and soon. The Fire and Police staff are some of the nicest, most deserving group of people in this town. They deserve better conditions, they have earned better conditions. Not one person would dispute that. We have the ideas out here if the Selectmen would just stop and listen for a change. Split things up. Renovate, build on smaller scales, have it make sense.

    I drove by the Wing School today... Gosh, that would be an impressive Police station. Perfect amount of parking for cars, offices, and a gym for the kids in town to use during vacations when the schools are locked up tight.

    I watch NBC's Chicago Fire TV show. I see what they are going for. It would be great for all departments to be around each other and have a nice facility to cook, sleep, shower and exercise. But this isn't Chicago, and it's not TV. We need to plan accordingly by having things make simple common sense.

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  12. This town needs a shake-down, or a shake-up. It's time to start to let go of the antiquated red-tape and "who knows who" attitude that is keeping new business out, and progress made. If the town officials can't wake up to this fact, they need to go. Homeowners can no longer keep up with the taxes needed to make this town function. Especially when we are driving to Hyannis to make simple purchases for everyday needs. We should start at the top and work our way down. Who is the one man that's been appointed for the longest amount of time? A man that has, coincidentally, been in his appointed position for the same amount of time buildings, parking lots, economic stimulus, and basic progress has not been of great importance to fixing and are literally falling apart?

    The people sent a message, that the usual "we tell you what's good for you and you just vote for it" is not working anymore. I believe we should begin to ease ourselves into the 21st Century and realize that the small time, small town ways cannot be sustained if the sole source of revenue is the property owner. We can do it and keep our charm at the same time with the right man or woman in the position to take charge.

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  13. You fail to name the appointed position but I think we know who he is. Your point is well taken, however, I believe that more of the fault lies in the fact that the selectmen over the past twenty five years or so, have not been strong. They should be dictating the policy. I think they should have told the appointed official to come in much lower than he did. Except for Frank Panorfi, none of them did. It is time to get moving and I mean move. They should find out what the true value of the South Sandwich property is and ask for that amount. If it doesn't come in then go out and get businesses to come in. Sandwich "could have" a lot to offer.

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  14. Carl Johansen would say to 301 in regards to the South Sandwich property. Only one bid has been returned to the town. it is being discussed , with others to see the best way forward.
    The value of this property is like any other plot of land that may be available here in Sandwich.
    Given that we may not have the best management from the present board of selectmen in securing business to locate here, with out some push back from one group or another, What it may garner in an different climate, is not what it is presently worth as it sits now,
    The developer, in my opinion has offered a reasonable offer that seems to have the Sandwich Economic Initiative Corporation attention.

    Speaking of the SEIC it is interesting to note that this group has still not made available what and who recieved the $50,000 that was placed into there account at the beginning of the year. It seems also that Mr. Cooney has resigned his position from the SEIC.

    This may be the right time for some explaination from the SEIC and board of Selectmen to produce some factual documentation that underscores the progress being made with providing our community with a better business model, that hopefully will bring in some tax dollar relief.

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  15. As for the property in question. It is a guaranty that the selectmen will accept it as they are in love with he who brought it to fruition. Its too bad that it will be far less than what it should be and far less that what it could be. With a SEIC that actually did something, they may have been able to find a developer in this nation or another.

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  16. As far as the Selectmen and the South Sandwich Village, it is what they say is a done deal. My only problem is the price. To me it is at least 2.5 million less than it should be. Also, what guarantee is there that this project will be done in less than 40 years.

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  17. I agree with 718. Its too bad that the Selectmen don't get it. It is either too much as in the public safety bldg. or too little as will be for the Village Triangle.

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  18. Mr. Anonymous, Mr. Anonymous of 12.17 You have made your point in being a typical self serving politicain that, unlike Our host, Mr Hunt, has a problem speaking the truth and spreading guano around yourself.

    I will only answer one of your comments, that you posted to be untruthful and in your words full of what makes the green grass grow green.

    I would like to address you by your name, but unless and untill you have the courage, respect to post your name here , we will leave it blank.

    Maybe you may think all women should be in the kitchen, but I do not.

    I have worked along side many women in my life time from all walks of life and all classes of people. Some elected, some appointed and some that never were political.

    I have and will continue to defend the rights of women, against the forces that demean them. It is ironic that a politician would make a comment that he has no knowledge about, just to spread a little more guano around.

    I have served along side women all my life , some in some very high places of State Governement, My first fishing mentor was a women, in a sport that is male dominated. It was with a women that I worked with, to co develope the Massachusetts Aquatic Education program, as a volunteer [Urban Angler] Let alone all of the women on various committees, as a volunteer scout leader

    My mother provided all of my upbringing and gave me the principals I use in my life, I would never disrepect my Mother, in any manner that you posted in your hill of guano.

    I have shown my respect towards women all my life. In some cases I have defended them when needed and that will never change.

    I would not be still married, to the same women of 54 years if I thought that all women should remain in the kitchen as you posted.

    I can not wait to see how much more guano you plan on spreading, If you get enough of it and are lacking the space to store it , give me a call, my garden needs a little boost.

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    1. Thank you so much for your ordure. I shan't respond.

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  19. We would, also like to thank you for your ordure as well .

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  20. Now that the meals tax has been passed by the voters at town meeting, it may be appropriate to get some dialog going in regards as to what to do with it and fixing some of the peoples long time needs. Every time a discussion gets going that winds up needed money we seem to never have it it around for what ever reason.

    Now we have a source of money that can be dedicated to some capitol need and from this taxpayers veiw point it should be dedicated to the pool, beach,buildings in need of structual repair along with assisting in the building of the new Chamber Of Commerce new home at the transfer station.. By dedicating this new money source for the people of Sandwich that result in a visual benifit to our whole community , we may just finaly get something acomplished here in Sandwich.

    For me non of this new found money should be used for any more consulting fees, we have been consulted to death in this town and we have nothing that the people can point a finger at and say, look at what we acomplished with this investment.

    Especially in the areas of the Peoples Pool, The Peoples Beaches and the Peoples Buildings.

    Given that our town depends on vistors to shop here and what that has caused to our roads, and beaches over the years can not be denied, it is only appropriate to support the Chamber of Commerce in its vision of a new approach to how they want to show case our town in a new information center.

    If it is all done in a cooperative, collaborate fashon that benfits every group, rather then just one , we the people of Sandwich, just may find a way to get something accomplished and feel good at the end of the day about.

    What say yee fellow citizens of Sandwich, as to how you feel the meals Tax should be used?

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  21. I feel as though our Town Manager and Elected Officials should decide what to do with the money. I am sure it will be on their agenda soon.

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  22. Relatively speaking, the amount is small. If we were all to pipe in on what should be done with the money, then certainly yet another mountain from a molehill would be created. There are many projects that are both good and necessary, but which is best should be left to those accountable to the citizens, that's why they were elected to be the deciders.


    Toni Marchese

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  23. tax and spend, thats how I feel. Pay as You Throw is such a wonderful program...saved over $600,00 a year. Town employee health care cost reductions in the millions of savings. Did anybodies taxes go down? Why no they didn't. As a matter of fact they went up .98 per thousand last year and regardless of your choice of trash disposal the cost is three times what it used to be. The talk is about what to spend a new tax revenue for or on. How about this...nothing

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    1. I believe my spouse paid $55 for a sticker. As a family of 4, we use 1 blue bag every two weeks. That's about 26 bags a year plus say another 16 for those heavier weeks. I think recycling is a good thing and it is not difficult to do.

      As long as you do something with the money that does not go directly to the operating budgets, that is fine with me. If they go to the operating budget it is just off 2 1/2 spending and will cost you more.

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  24. where do you think the .98 per thousand went? It didn't go back to you because you sorted a milk jug properly. wow

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  25. Any time new found money can be spent on capitol projects in affect is at least stabilizing the tax base. The meals tax has the potentional of improving some of the projects around our town that will take an increase of property taxes to fix.

    It is very important for me that this meal tax not go into any part of the general fund to operate our town, but be dedticated towards projects that we know we all need to get done and at present do not have the available cash to get those capitol jobs done.

    The town of Dennis recently took dollars of meals tax to do just that,

    No increases to the taxes we all pay as homeowners and that for me should be a good thing for every one. Especially for those of us on a fixed income.

    We just may find the means to accomplish long and short term goals for the schools and the town, from the use of this money.Everyone gets to benefit, that for me is a win win situation

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    1. "new found money"? I don't think its found, but it is new if you are referring to the local meals tax.

      I agree that the money should not go into operating budgets, but certainly and absolutely they should not go to "capitol projects".

      I don't see how you can stabilize a tax base. I would think you should prefer to stabilize the tax rate (if not lower it) and increase the tax base (not stabilize it).

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  26. I think the tax increase goes into the black hole of Calcutta.

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  27. I want the money to go towards the operating budget so that my paycheck can increase for the good work that I do.

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  28. I vote to spend the money on Sandwich TV. I could not find the school committee schedule as I don't have a computer. I asked a friend if I could use hers and she let me. I could hardly hear the meeting and there were no visible microphones. New ones would help so that the school committee could at least tell me where my money is being wasted.

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  29. In my view, the Town should be giving the SEIC the entire amount and make an informal commitment to give them at least $100,000 per year.

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  30. Thats a great idea 726, except in all the time they have been organized, they yet to still have a business plan or for that matter any bylaws in place that can assure the taxpayers they are serious about economic development at all.

    We just gave them $50, 000 in the beginning of the year and no one has accounted for that money and the then President MR Coony at that time resiegns,

    Also the majority of the minutes from all there meetings since the beginning of the year have yet to be submitted to the town clerks office.

    Does not sound like any one I would be thrilled about handing them any more money from the taxpayers

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  31. To 12:39. It seems that if what you say is the case, and I have no knowledge that tells me it would not be, then it is imperative for the BOS to bring them in and question them, or at very least either have Mr. Dunham find out what is happening and or ask Mr. White what has been going on with the minutes.

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  32. As far as the Minutes of the meetings goes Mr. White has made the requests and he will be also making further requests, since other towns folks are making inquirys about such happenings.

    The board of Selectmen under the new chair have also asked the SEIC to come up with a business plan, hopefully it will be forthcoming shortly, but who knows?

    It also would be nice to have all of the minutes from all of the meetings held in excutive session, that no one ever seems to discuss, as well as a recorded DVD like all of the other groups here in town provide. Our town charter does not make it a requirement, so non is supplied.

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  33. I think you bring up several questions with your comments, questions that need to be understood by all taxpayers. First, what good is it to have a requirements that is somewhat vague as to what a reasonable time for minutes would be. I think that the Charter Board should have put something in that basically states that they should be in within 60 days or a statement as to why they have not become available and an anticipated date for them to be submitted. If they don't make that date, they would be required to submit another report. If the total time goes beyond 120 days, there should be a sanction.

    The Selectmen should jump all over the SEIC for not coming up with a plan. I am glad to hear that Mr. Pierce seems to be concerned, but I do wonder why he has not made it a major public issue. If it were not for your constant investigation, I would be unaware of the fact that they are not doing what it is they should do, especially where some of my money has gone to them.

    As for the recorded DVD. I never read anything about the Charter people even speaking to the issue. It seems to be that the Board spent hours discussing whether or not Taylor White's job should be elected or not. This issue, in my view, was one where only a vindictive Board would spend so much time on what was overwhelming rejected by amendment.

    Thanks for your work. Selectmen: take heed, the ball is in your court and the shoes on your feet.

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  34. I think that Carl and Toni may be onto something. Part of leadership is making things work and work correctly. Its too late for the Charter Committee, but not for the SEIC.

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  35. To 7;15 one of the first things any group that formulates as a non profit organization is to make up a business plan that includes a set of rules[or bylaws]
    Any one included on the SEIC, by MGL law, can not make any money from that activity untill they have not been part of it for at least two years after resigning.

    That means any one attempting to use the postion while they are a member are really donating there time with no possible payback.

    A suggestion was proposed in the beginning by a member to put in seed money by each member to get the ball started and it was shot down.

    If that had been done each member would have had an opportunty to be vested in the whole process and we would not be sitting here now, waiting for a business plan, that does not include a workable bylaws that sets the tone and example of how this SEIC would conduct itself, in attempting to bring economic development here to Sandwich.

    History has shown that when a non profit does not establish the basic rules of ethical behavor[Bylaws] it fails to provide the service it was set up to perform.

    It is not too late as you stated, as some of the stumbling blocks have gone on to other endeavors, but some serious thought needs to be generated going forward if in fact after almost 6 years of negative results, in my opinion, gets turned around to carry out the message it intialy was sold to the town as. A promise for new business here in Sandwich. New business to offset the taxes we all pay as homeowners.

    For me the first step is being complety honest and above board on every thing they do, along with putting together a business plan that includes a set of workable By laws and submitting all minutes of every meeting in DVd format along with the written minutes of every meeting held in excutive session that no longer need to be held from public veiw,

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  36. I am not sure about the DVD. Although it would certainly show all what is happening, it can also make meetings more rigid. I almost think that SC and BOS members play to the Cable broadcast as they certainly mention it often enough. If it required by law it should be done.

    For the 50K we the people gave them, we deserve to know what is going on and we should get our answers now, sooner than later.

    Thanks for your input Mr. J.

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  37. Last night I listened to the Selectman Meeting where they discussed the Public Safety Committee. I am not sure they get it. We the taxpayers of Sandwich want what is needed, not what is efficient. The last committee gave us what was efficient. It was loaded with the stakeholders of government who for want of a Taj Mahal, gave us bull about response time. Many times I heard the taxpayers complain that while those response times may fall into specifications of whatever group puts out those times, they also increased response time for much of the town. They did little for East Sandwich. They will just justify a scheme where the Police will get what they want and we will have coverage from existing non-headquarter buildings for the fire department. This is better than what I was unwilling to pay.

    As an aside, Pannofi stood for the taxpayers. He alone.

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  38. I have made up my mind after reading the Enterprise last month. If the Selectmen give 165K to the SEIC, I vote a big fat NO for any Public Safety proposals.

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  39. Touche Mr. Negative.

    I will also vote NO on any public safety building that actually looks more like a conference center. Whatever is eventually built is/are suppose to be for the men and women that work in the buildings. They should not be used for meeting space (all the conference rooms in first plan) or all the extra office for people that are not town employees!

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  40. Are not town employees, really, like who?

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  41. Mr. Negative, you can rest assured that educated tax payers of Sandwich will also do the same.
    No accounting of $50,000 that were granted to this group. They never have put together any business plan.
    They have never taken the time to establish any ethical bylaws on how they function.
    They have never submitted and audio meeting minutes to the town clerk[we have no documents in place to force them to do so] This would have been a job for the recent charter committee to tackle.

    All we hear are empty promises blowing in the wind about what they are about to come forward with, are you kidding me.

    The last chairmen made a whole bunch of promises when he was running for selectmen and how the Sears group was about to make some revolation economic development for our town.

    Then again what about never having to take a penny of tax payers money to work with, that was the first time. After they got the $50,000 seed money again a similar promise was made.

    I have a couple of old bridges, that need some major design work to sell you if you believe thay will ever be just thinking about economic development for Sandwich. You would get better odds that the new gas line for the service road would be built before this group comes up a economic plan that every citizen in Sandwich will benefit from and not just a select few players in the game of money.

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  42. I will give you $7.00 dollars for the bridge.

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  43. 7/28 12:28

    Thank you for catching my oops. Any new police and/or fire station built are for the men and women of those departments. Not to be used for any other group as meeting space. Didn't we just spend millions building a huge space above town hall?

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  44. We the tax payers have paid an enormous bill, to rebuild the town hall. We have meeting space on the second floor for all types of events and meetings.

    We have a Recreational building sitting down near a grand old house at Oak Crest Cove, another place where meetings can be held for large groups or used to make new office space for those still left working in a unsafe and condemned building.
    The house on the other hand sits vacant, deriving no benifit to the taxpayers. It could be rented out or sold and get it back on the tax rolls.

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