Archive for September, 2012
Initially, Governance said it would take changes in the Town Manager’s Act to Spring Annual Town Meeting, but selectmen are in a rush to bring their Acting Town Manager into compliance with the Town Manager Act, and because they can’t do that, they must change the Act itself. An evening public hearing will be scheduled for the end of October to bring the changes to citizens. Although the committee has not yet written the language, it has voted to remove all qualifications for the town manager and the phrase that he or she cannot be currently serving on an elected or appointed town board at the time of appointment.
Because Acting Town Manager Mike Milanoski was on two appointed boards at the time of his appointment, he cannot legally serve as town manager. Currently, he is filling an 18-month contract. The language in Milanoski’s initial contract is muddled. It appears Selectmen appointed him to be Town Manager.
Selectmen want to extend his contract by two years, until June 2015. Selectman Leland Jenkins is supposedly negotiating the extension. There has not been any news about the contract for several weeks now.
Also, the Governance committee is still discussing changing other language in the Act with regard to what triggers a search for a Town Manager. Several committee members said they didn’t want the Acting Town Manager’s contract to be long-term.
Trish Morse asked: “What triggers the search process? Can acting (town manager) be the candidate?”
Jack Keniley said the Interim Manager “is just keeping the lights on – just a bridge.”
Morse added “The search should begin a soon as it is apparent the full time manager is not coming back.” The committee also discussed the length of time selectmen could contract with an Acting Town Manager, saying there should be a limit.
The Governance Committee will now sunset in 2013 as opposed to 2012. Selectmen have expanded its life.
Selectmen are likely to appoint Tom Killelea and a yet unnamed person to the committee at their Tuesday meeting.
Merle Brown (a former selectman) said the time the town manager selection committee spent on the last search was too long. “When we hired the first town manager we did it within two months.” Brown added that he had a problem with the selectmen writing a 3 ½ year contract with Milanoski, although he thought Milansoki was doing a good job. “There are plenty of town managers looking for jobs.”
Selectman Chairman Paul Carlson spoke in favor of hiring from the inside, “The reason you hire from the inside is because you know the person.”
Brown said he thought any inside person should still go through the process (being vetted). Others concurred, including Governance Chair Christine Cunning..
Governance will meet again on Oct. 4 at 7:30 a.m. at Cohasset High School in the hearing room right off the parking lot at the right on the building.
Oh Pleeze…..give us a break, Cohasset Mariner.
So many errors and omissions in your editorial and your follow up story my head spins. I recorded the meeting to watch later and find myself being “exposed” by DeCaprio. Did the Mariner ever call me for a statement? I don’t think so. Wasn’t the reporter even a little curious about HOW DeCaprio got private E-mails? Not in the least.
There was no back and forth debate between Karen Quigley and Peter DeCaprio. As a private citizen, and town counsel recognizes her as the same, she refused to be summoned to their meeting.
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This is such a joke.
Town of Cohasset
Code of Core Values for Civil Discourse
Mission & Values
The Town of Cohasset’s municipal government values hard work, honesty, respect, integrity and earnest desire to work collaboratively to best serve our residents. The town government, made up of town employees and elected and appointed volunteers, is committed to providing the public with the highest level of services delivered in the most efficient manner with the financial resources available.
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The uproar over uncivil emails must seem inane. It is. Until you realize that it’s about public officials using their office to bully, intimidate and embarrass private citizens and members of the press who have the temerity to question and/or disagree with them.
I declined to attend last Tuesday night’s BoS meeting as I chose not to validate the Board of Selectmen’s authority to bring a private citizen before them with the purpose of examining their emails and blogs.
And, while I choose not to engage in a futile dialogue with Peter DeCaprio, I will say that his statements, both verbal and written, as they pertain to my actions are gross misrepresentations and outright untruths.
I’m listening to my recording of the Cohasset Selectmen’s meeting early Wednesday morning, around 1 a.m., the time when I am able to think. I discover that Peter DeCaprio (of Cohasset Water Dept. fame) is reading my nasty E-mails aloud – many of which are to other people!! Egads! Wish I had known the Selectmen’s Civil Discourse agenda item was going to be about me. Why wasn’t I forewarned? Should I demand equal time?
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“Oh what a tangled web we weave when first we practice to deceive”
- Sir Walter Scott 1808
Remember early 2011 when it was first reported on this blog and then in the TTG about Weymouth officials giving themselves big pay increases? Then the denials came pouring in. It was at that time our Mayor had all the TTG newspapers destroyed at the Whipple Center ( violating freedom of the press).
In the Sunday Globe 9/16/2012 headline reads 78 on payroll topped Mayor in Salary. This is what is taking place in Braintree. The Town Councilor claims compared to Quincy, and Weymouth their Mayor is underpaid and is looking to increase his salary to $130,000. He bounced the reasoning for the Braintree mayor’s increase against the Weymouth mayor’s $123,000 a year.
Back in January 2011 I stated “I continue to believe the Council will pass all these pay increases if history was any indicator.”
Well I’m back. In 2011 Weymouth Mayor Sue Kay was earning was $110,000. Now we’d like to know what increases the rest of our elected officials got.
At the Cohasset Governance’s Sept. 13 meeting member George Chamillard stepped down from the committee saying he would continue to support the committee and its work as a non-voting citizen. Chamillard is a member of the advisory committee and by local bylaw cannot serve on another appointed board. Cohasset Selectmen were not not aware of this bylaw when Chamillard was appointed. We guess.
Town Clerk Carol St. Pierre will be invited to the committee’s next meeting to discuss whether her position should be appointed or elected. One of the concerns they have is that the assistant to the Town Clerk does not live in Cohasset and could not run for election as Town Clerk should St Pierre leave her position for any reason.
Other positions being discussed as possibly becoming appointed are recreation commission, board of health, and possibly housing authority – Acting Town Manager Mike Milanoski is checking into whether the position has to be elected. Milanoski noted that many towns are moving elected positions to appointed. Water and sewer commissions are still part of the discussion as to whether they should be a combined, appointed board under the direct management of the Acting Town Manager and the Selectmen.
Governance feels the Strong Town Manager’s Act needs some better definitions with regard to the role of the Selectmen and their agent, the Town Manager.
Milanoski and Selectman Chair Paul Carlson both opined that changes to the Act could be made in stages. Milanoski questioned the board if it might want more of a town administrator form of government and several times during discussion suggested that governance take something to Dec. 10th Special Town Meeting. “Take the low-hanging fruit now,” he said. “You can come back later and do a philosophical view.”
Governance said no, it wasn’t ready for Dec. 10th.
Later Milanoski urged: “You were appointed as a microcosm of the community. Bring (sic) some changes to Special. Bring (sic) other things later.”
Carlson disagreed, saying spring town meeting was soon enough.
Committee member Merle Brown (a former two-term selectman) took issue with Cohasset Selectmen’s recent move to appoint Acting Town Manager Mike Milanoski to an extended 3-year contract. “Appointments should not be more than 180 days for Acting Town Manager.”
Ralph Dormitzer noted that the committee had already recommended a change in the Town Manager’s Act that would if voted by Town Meeting permit the Acting Town Manager to be appointed Town Manager. Changes the committee discussed at the last meeting included dropping qualifications for that office such as that person would no longer have to have had full time professional experience as a Town Manager. Also, the person could be serving on an appointed and/or elected boards at the time of the appointment.
Governance discussed asking the Selectmen to extend the Sunset of the committee to Christmas 2013. Originally, it was due to sunset December 31, 2012.
The E-mail which inspired this blog:
On Sep 11, 2012, at 4:57 PM, Carlson, Paul wrote
Dear Ms Kasperowicz
In your letter of September 7, you requested to be apprised of the Board of Selectmen’s legal authority for signing a contract with Acting Town Manager Michael Milanoski. Cohasset’s Town Manager Act vests in the Board of Selectmen the responsibility for appointing the Town Manager and the Acting Town Manager and for entering into the appropriate contracts. The Act states that a Town Manager “shall be a professionally qualified person, especially fitted by education, training and previous full-time employment to perform the duties of the office.”
The Board of Selectmen has carefully reviewed Mr. Milanoski’s educational and professional background and his performance over the past six months. The Board has determined that it is in the best interests of the Town of Cohasset to enter into a new contract with him so that he can continue serving the town through June 30, 2015 as Acting Town Manager.
Very sincerely yours,
Board of Selectmen
The April 3rd 2012 contract the Cohasset Board of Selectmen signed with Michael Milanoski is a confused, possibly illegal, contract for these reasons:
- The contract does not specify under what laws selectmen can write a multi-year contract with an Acting Town Manager. Selectmen have not answered this question. Standard procedure is a 6-9 month contract. Citizens of the Town of Cohasset would like to see the laws that allow Selectmen to write a multi-year contract outside the scope of the Strong Town Manager Act.
- The contract starts out by saying the Selectmen “desire” to employ Milanoski as Acting Town Manager. But the rest of the contract says he’s the Town Manager and is being hired as Town Manager. Is he? Mr. Milansoki is calling himself Town Manager. His letterhead and his business card say he is Town Manager. Are Selectmen subverting the Act?
- Article 5 of Milanoski’s 18 month contract (soon to be extended to June 2015) says he can removed as “Town Manager” with a super majority vote of the board, equal to four affirmative votes, as provided in Section 3(J)_ of the Statute.
- The Town Manager’s Act says the Town Manager can be removed by a simple majority. Why would it be more difficult to remove an Acting Town Manager than a Town Manager? We would think that any contract with Milanoski would have to be in scope with the Act. Why is this WAY OUTSIDE the scope of the Act?
- Please offer proof that TOWN COUNSEL Paul DeRensis saw this contract and said it is a legal one. We would also like to be assured that he has blessed the extended contract with Milansoki.
I urge you not to sign an extended contract with Milanoski and to advertise for an experienced Town Manager. Town Counsel told you early on that Milanoski would have to separated from the Town for a period of one year before he could be considered for the position of Town Manager: ”No person holding elective or appointive office in the Town shall within one year of holding such office be eligible to be appointed to the position of Town Manager.” Milanoski was on two appointed boards at the time of his appointment.
The previous full time experience stipulated in the Town Manager Act does not refer to previous full time experience as garbage collector, or Supervisor of Public Works, or bartender. It means previous full time experience as a Town Manager.
Don’t saddle the Town with an inexperienced Acting Town Manager. We have seen the results of inexperienced Acting Town Managers serving the Town in past years. Even brief tenures wrecked havoc.
Alex, Kara Frank and Maura – the girls are all daughters of
Terry (England) and Chris Duggan,
formerly of Lily Pond, Cohasset
Frank Wesson England, a former member of the Cohasset Selectmen and School Committee, died peacefully on September 4, 2012 in San Diego, CA. Frank was one of the first members of the town’s five-man board of selectmen.
He was born on May 12, 1920 in Ft. Benning, Ga. He graduated from Syracuse U in 1947 and served in the U.S. Army WWII. Also, he was a member of the US Army Reserve (Mass National guard). A long term Aetna manager he worked in the insurance industry well into his 80s.
He often remarked that his mother had lived until 103 and so he thought he had better stay employed. His wife Kay said as recently as last Sunday when asked if he were going to vote for Obama boomed “Hell No.!” Kay said she had an absentee ballot for him, but he was unable to sign it and so he will not be able to vote against Obama in November.
Frank leaves his wife, Kathleen V. England, four daughters, Deborah E. Zepnick (Glen), Kathleen J. England, Terese E. Duggan (Chris) and Janet M. England. Also, five grandaughters and two great grandsons.
A funeral mass will be celebrated at St. Gabriel’s Church in Poway, CA. Donations in his name made be made to the North Queensbury Firefighters Service., PO Box 61, Cleverdale, NY. People wishing to contact any of the Englands can do so by e-mail: Kay England (email@example.com), Debbie England Zepnic, firstname.lastname@example.org, Terry England Duggan email@example.com, Janet England firstname.lastname@example.org. Or, visit http://www.powaybernardomortuary.net/ to share a memory of Frank with his family.
Double click on letter to enlarge
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