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I am an Upton resident and taxpayer. I have very serious concerns about Article 4 providing the town manager with a new car and about the professional performance of the incumbent town manager.
The Upton Board of Selectmen (BOS) cites a “Triple Bottom Line” approach to achieve sustainability. The three legs are service delivery, economics and transparency. In theory when all three circles interconnect and overlap maximum value is achieved.
The BOS Chairman is confident that Article 4 meets all the criteria above but, declines to substantiate his confidence claim with analysis. Instead, he will only respond to my inquiries at a public meeting subject to his rules. The chairman’s refusal to disclose the public information utilized to support Article 4 coupled with the BOS’s recent decision to provide the incumbent town manager a three-year contract extension appears related.
The BOS Chairman’s position that the only way to generate a response and facilitate a transparent conversation is at public meeting does not prevent him from providing me my requested information. If existing car records cannot be produced, it is evident that the BOS never gave Article 4 a complete evaluation as suggested.
The BOS Chairman’s position that discussion can only take place at public meeting is flawed. Protocol allows discussion with public officials outside of a posted meeting provided there is not a quorum.
I encourage a no vote on Article 4.
Many of the Upton neighbors that I communicate with share no positive comments with regard to their interaction with the incumbent town manager. They find the town manager to be unprofessional and difficult to deal with on a repeat basis. This is echoed by town employees that I meet. My own experiences with the town manager are very similar.
The BOS’s repeated disconnect to my complaints regarding the town manager’s conduct and performance is disappointing and unacceptable. In discussions with Upton neighbors and town employees, I know that I am not alone in my sentiment. The BOS’s apparent decision to do nothing and instead, reward the current town manager with a new car and contract extension is just wrong.
I have suggested to the BOS that a third-party, independent professional survey of the incumbent town manager’s performance is in order. It should measure town employee working relationships and citizen interaction experiences. To date, the BOS has not responded to me.
I respectfully urge Upton residents to contact the BOS and express their support of a third party professional review of the town manager. Maintaining public trust is essential to good government. The citizens of Upton deserve honesty and integrity from their local elected officials managing that good government.
William D. Montenegro