To The Daily Sun,
Being a good selectman in a small town isn't an easy job. People are always trying to push you into supporting their agendas. If you don't support something, it has a ripple effect and the acquaintances you once had now dislike you. You have to have thick skin to stand firm against special interest groups, especially when you feel it's not in the best interest of the taxpayers. I would like to take a minute to explain some things.
1. I am not against the (Year-Round) library. However, I do feel it should be its own warrant article so people can vote on it individually. I don't agree with hiding it in the town's operating budget.
2. I am not against the Fire Department. As a matter of fact I was a call member of the Fire Department for several years and I was treasurer for the Firemen's Association.
3. State Rep. Dave Russell was untruthful (Letter to the Editor) in Tuesday's Daily Sun. I was not a selectman when my son was hired as police chief as stated by Mr. Russell. As a sergeant, and a 12-year veteran of the department, the new chief was hired by a unanimous vote by then-Selectmen McCormack, Jean and Guarino. Mr. Russell is mistaken when he states the accepted procedure is to advertise the position. The town has made a practice of hiring from within when they have a qualified person. Why can't people tell the truth?
4. My running for selectman does not create a conflict of interest. At a meeting last year our town Moderator Mark Sisti stood up and said there is no conflict of interest, only the perception.
5. When I was your selectman for three years we lowered the taxes every year without cutting any services, a fact I am very proud of.
6. In an attempt to keep me out of office, many untruths are being spread throughout our small community, probably because I cannot be bought by the special interests groups in town.
Call me to get the real story if you feel something you have been told is untruthful.
These are just a few of the things that needed to be clarified. I have proven I have the knowledge and willingness to scrutinize budgets and make hard choices which need to be made in order to keep the town running and affordable to our taxpayers. Some selectmen frivolously spend taxpayer money without considering the effect. I don't do that.
I feel bad for our residents who are being taxed out of their homes. Our last tax bills were a fine example of ineffectiveness. This should not have happened and would not have happened if I was representing the taxpayers.
Petition Warrant Article 23 has been submitted with the sole purpose of disqualifying me from being a selectman or Budget Committee member. Just because a certain group of people have differing opinions or do not always agree with me, it does not justify trying to prevent me from serving in the town I live in. In my opinion it takes away my rights and is un-American. I recused myself from every vote directly related to my son, a police officer, and would continue to do so now that he is the police chief. Please vote "No" on Article 23.
The State of New Hampshire recognizes that it is very likely (that) our small rural towns have employees or supervisors who are related. For that reason the state has chosen not to enact a law preventing someone from serving their community. My belief is that Gilmanton should not vote to supersede the state in taking away the rights of its citizens. I feel that anyone willing to serve their town should be allowed to have their name on the ballot and if the people elect them they should be allowed to serve.
I would appreciate your vote on Tuesday, March 8.
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