I’ve been watching town government from the sidelines for the past year and my conclusion and opinion is that the Board of Selectmen (excepting our newly elected selectman, Martha Gjesteby) is compromised, incompetent, lacks any respect for the rule of law, process and procedure, extends extraordinary influence to some elected and appointed officials, and has abdicated its authority to an inexperienced Town Manager, selected and appointed by them with no public vetting.
Having given him a 15-month contract at top dollar, they intend to ignore Mrs. Gjesteby’s request that established process and procedure be followed and an RFP be let. There is to be no competition. The Anointed One is here to stay.
These individuals have systematically rid town government of any and all that dare to hold an opposing opinion or, worse, to challenge them. First me: we all know my long list of transgressions. (Sarcasm thinly veiled.)
Then three Conservation Commissioners were not reappointed simply because the E-20 private interest group thought they might not vote the right way. Hand-chosen, unqualified, inexperienced individuals replaced them. (Those in the know predict a repeat performance tomorrow night when the long-time ConCom chair will not be reappointed. The only question is which crony will they appoint.)
Their true purpose came to light recently when these majority members, ignoring the opinion of long-standing members, voted to deny the project abutting the property of one of their own. (See blog DeCaprio wins another one.) ConCom no longer has upholding environmental laws and regulations as its charter. No, now the majority protects the chosen few.
Then, the Town Manager had to go because he challenged the powerbrokers. It is expected his lawsuit against the Town and the Selectmen individually will be filed soon. Wonder what that will cost us?
Then it was town employees. Contracts negotiated in good faith were declared illegal. Some were fired.
Now it’s the Police Chief. They would have us believe that it’s simply a coincidence that on the very day the Chief was to bring his concerns over possible criminal actions by the Anointed One to the attention of a Selectman the Chief was suspended.
They would also have us believe that the fact that the Chief stood by his boss, the former Town Manager, as well as his opposition to closing the Police Station at night – in direct disobedience of the Anointed One’s orders – had absolutely nothing to do with his suspension.
And they would have us believe that the grievances against the Chief came to light that very same day. What a string of coincidences.
The Selectman abruptly canceled his meeting with the Chief so he went to Town Hall to deliver his charges directly to the Town Manager. Instead he found himself suspended. No notice, no hearing. Just hand over your gun and badge. Perfect example of the best defense is a good offense.
Continuing this tactic, in an astonishingly inappropriate and unwise action, the Anointed One, with no selectman objecting, read criminal charges against the Chief in open meeting. This violates personnel, legal, moral and intelligence standards.
The Anointed One expected to control the story but pesky old me asked that the Chief’s charges against him be read into the record – just in the name of fairness. A deer-in-the-headlights Selectman Chair did so before they gathered their wits, circled the wagons and said it was inappropriate to read further, as it was a legal issue. Oh, the charges against the Chief weren’t?
Town Counsel, whose job it is to protect the BoS and the Anointed One, and a private investigator that works for Town Counsel conducted an independent investigation. Independent?
Even if the final report is fair and balanced, the Anointed One gets to determine if he or the Chief is guilty. No conflict there.
How are we to have any confidence that the dueling accusations are true or false? We can’t and that’s not right.
The Chief’s recourse? The BoS. Fat chance he has of getting a fair hearing with this group (again excepting Mrs. Gjesteby). They have their marching orders from The Cabal who really is running the Town.
The kicker? No one has talked to the Chief or his attorney. How can you conduct an investigation without interviewing the man who brought the charges and who is being charged? By all means don’t let facts get in the way.
Tomorrow night the Anointed One will present the independent report to the BoS and the Chief’s fate will be determined. Whether you like the Chief or not, this is not the way a fair hearing should be conducted. It shouldn’t be the way we do business in Cohasset. They got away with it with the former Town Manger. Then, many of you showed perhaps not support for the man but opposition to the process. Please do so again.
“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” Edmund Burke