At the Finance Committee meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 12, I, Roger Mathieu and Barry Gallant, members of the “Mitchell Team” appeared to give the reasons for our warrant article to build a revised DPW facility at either the Providence Road or Fletcher Street site.
The chairman of the Finance Committee, Mr. D’Amato, a committee unfortunately of one, made it clear that there was some type of process that had to be followed, despite our work being pro-bono and donated to the town. He also advised that we had to produce a letter from the Attorney General approving 44E and stamped drawings to be used under 44E.
He made it clear that he “knew 44E” despite our advising him that stamped drawings were not required up front and that Town Counsel had already spoken to Debra Anderson in the Attorney General’s office and sent a letter to the town manager that 44E could be used to build a DPW.
Then at the BPCC meeting on the following night he again said that a process had to be followed.
In an earlier article on this web site these comments were made: “There are people out there trying to overshadow the legitimate process you have followed, D’Amato said. He warned that any DPW proposal that hasn’t followed process will not get Finance Committee recommendation at the Oct. 23 Fall Town Meeting.”
What arrogance. That is the reason for my original comment above about a committee of one. Since when does any chair of any committee speak for the committee?
We are obviously those “people” he speaks about and it is extremely insulting to be treated like we were trying to sell the town insurance rather than build a first class DPW facility.
The process line is what has been used from day one to try and cut off any use of the plan to build first at the WWTP and now at either there or Fletcher street. It is bogus. The process was followed completely after the volunteer work was completed. The BPCC had all documents turned over to them before the fall town meeting in 2010 and they voted unanimously to approve the project. Mr. D’Amato and Mr. Nolan used that “process” card at their meetings and at town meeting to sway enough voters that we did not get the two-thirds vote needed.
The Board of Selectmen voted 3 to 2 to support and the Fincom changed their 7 to 0 vote against to 3 to 3 when they were given more documentation the night of the town meeting, including copies of all letters or emails from the Attorney General, Natural Heritage, Town Council and the Providence and Worcester railroad. One member of the Fincom even gave an impassioned plea on the town meeting floor for passage.
What more process is required when something is done pro-bono, free, no charge, no $800,000 fee to design a DPW that met the entire program of the department, added a new, safe entrance to the wastewater treatment site and replacement of a dangerous railroad crossing with dual gates?
The BPCC has been given an alternative to the $8.5 million plan that would cost the town under $2 million. Rather than continue to work against people trying to help the town, why isn’t everyone working together to come up with the best plan at the best cost? Let’s all work together.
Something Mr. D’Amato and his followers have refused to do. What a shame.