To The Daily Sun,
Seldom do I weigh in on candidates during a Republican primary. Usually I have found the Republican primary winner, whether or not he/she was my first choice, to be far better for the taxpayers then the Democratic candidate.
This year, however, there is a race in Belknap County that doesn't fit that scenario. State Rep. Dick Burchell is running against an incumbent for a county commissioner seat. Since the two of them have extensive voting records, it's easy to see the contrast in how they represent their constituents, particularly in fiscal issues.
Dick's opponent, as a commissioner, proposed budgets that would have increased the amounts assessed the towns and ultimately the taxpayers by 9 percent in 2013 and 8 percent in 2014. The delegation, with Dick playing a strong role, had to prioritize competing budget items to reduce the hit on taxpayers to a more reasonable amount.
Likewise, Dick's opponent and his fellow commissioners proposed a $42 million replacement of the county correctional facility. In spite of much criticism for greatly exceeding standards resulting in the huge cost, the commissioners have resisted reducing the scope, though Dick's opponent now says his proposal will come in at $30-35 million. Many other facilities that meet all required standards have been built at far less cost. As commissioner, Dick will be far more realistic and develop a taxpayer-friendly solution.
The Superior Court injunction issued last Thursday sums up much of the recent disputes on the Belknap County budget. The court took this unusual action saying that an injunction was necessary to prevent "...the possibility of the continued unauthorized transfer and expenditure of taxpayer money, especially in the wake of the likelihood that the petitioners (the Delegation) will succeed in this case on the merits...". The entire conflict has been troubling, particularly when one realizes that Dick's opponent took the exactly opposite side of his current position when he served as chairman of the delegation in 2005-06.
Republican voters in Belmont, Tilton, Gilmanton, and Barnstead are urged to turn out on Sept. 9 and vote for Dick Burchell to keep fiscal soundness in Belknap County. The rest of Belknap County also needs to give attention. This primary will affect all of our tax bills.
State Rep. Frank Tilton
Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 10:50
To The Daily Sun,
When voting for State Representative in the upcoming Primary Election please consider Russ Dumais of Gilford. I have personally known Russ for 44 years. He is a man of honesty and conviction.
He has been an educator, respected town leader and selectman in Gilford and a successful businessman in the Lakes Region. These life experiences give Russ the tools to be a great state representative who will make the tough decisions we need to successfully run our state government.
And as a former sheriff of Belknap County and county employee for 28 years, I know he has the ability to sit on the County Delegation and understand the unique issues we face here in our county. Russ will also be available to meet and speak with his constituents.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 10:41
To The Daily Sun,
I am voting for Jeanie Forrester because she has been a tremendous advocate for Holderness. As a member of the Selectboard in Holderness, I can tell you that Jeanie has been the most effective elected official for our community since Ray Burton. She recently attended one of our meetings to report on her activities as our state senator and asked if there was anything she could do for us. We asked her to try and get resolution on the Jersey barriers that had plagued our downtown for more than a decade. Guess what? The barriers are now removed and new guard rails have been installed. Done. That is service.
And she is assisting in getting the $150,000 funding approved through the SEC for the Livermore Falls improvements. Jeanie is on the ball and committed to the communities in her district. This is refreshing, and not politics as usual.
I hope everyone will take part in our democratic privilege to vote in both the primary (Sept. 9) and the general election (Nov. 4). And I would encourage you to vote for Jeanie Forrester so the North Country continues to have a strong supporter in Concord.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 10:38
To The Daily Sun,
Scott Brown and his SuperPAC buddies continue to lie about Senator Shaheen's record. I feel a need to put the real facts forward, but first, some context.
Recent attacks ads against the senator have indicated that she and her family benefited from her vote for the stimulus package in 2009. These ads have been taken off of many TV channels because of their factual inaccuracies. I find it offensive that they would falsely attack a sitting U.S. Senator, Democrat or Republican, just to promote another politician.
These are the facts: Sen. Shaheen and her family never received a single penny from voting for the stimulus package. Her husband was given stock options in a company that received a drop in the bucket worth of stimulus money. Neither the industry nor the company, which is developing better software to help detect breast cancer, knew it would be eligible to receive stimulus money until after the vote. In addition, Mr. Shaheen let these stock options expire, meaning it was not possible for him to receive any money from the company.
Mr. Brown and his friends need to do some research before they put another ad on TV.
As President Lincoln once said, "Honest communication is built on truth and integrity and upon respect of one for the other."
Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 10:36
To The Daily Sun,
I recently read an article in the paper that described GOP gubernatorial candidate Andrew Hemingway as "brash" and "unwilling to listen." The quotes were printed by the paper, citing anonymous sources from Bristol. I was elected to the Bristol Budget Committee the same year that Andrew was elected its chairman. For the entire budget process lasting approximately seven months, I watched Andrew's conduct, demeanor and leadership of the 13 member committee — from a vantage point of about 8 feet.
Andrew was anything but "brash" and "unwilling to listen." Whoever told this to the paper must have been referring to the previous chair, when the committee was run like his personal fiefdom.
Andrew was effective, considerate, observed Roberts Rules, sought consensus, and was genuinely concerned that budget pretensions to the committee were fairly and politely considered. He brought innovation to the budget process as well.
The end result was a budget that was unanimously approved by the Budget Committee, selectmen, CIP Committee, department heads and town administrator. The budget was dramatically reduced from the prior year, allowing for a reduction in municipal taxation. This doesn't happen when the man with the gavel is unwilling to listen.
I just wanted to correct the record, sign my name to this letter, and say I'm supporting Andrew Hemingway for governor. He is more than up to the job. Don't believe what "they" — who won't sign their names — say about him.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 10:33