War on Volunteers

At it’s meeting on November 18, 2014, the Hillsborough Selectboard fired another shot across the bow of “Volunteerism”.   Selectmen Fullerton & Urquhart out-voted Selectperson Wendy Baker to put Peter Brigham in charge of the Manahan Park program.

Selectboard Chair Dave Fullerton had summoned the Park Board to a Non-Public session at the beginning of the meeting, ostensibly to get their input.  In reality, after some members of the Park Board expressed concerns about Fullerton’s plan, he refused to allow them to discus the matter at their next meeting to make a recommendation to the Selectboard.  He also then refused to allow  the Park Board to vote and make a recommendation right then.  After coming back into public session Fullerton immediately held a vote and the deed was done.

So, one would ask: Why have a Park Board if it’s not going to be allowed to express it’s opinion?  Perhaps Chair Fullerton was just saving time and intended to ignore any opinion that didn’t match his own anyway.

This action follows the Boards debacle with the Historical Society and never achieved Historical Board earlier in the year.  At that time the Board announced it’s intention to create a Historical Board to deal with some controversial issues.  Then after soliciting and interviewing potential members the Selectboard just abandoned the idea with no concern to those who had volunteered to serve and taken the time to apply.

This pattern of snubbing volunteers unless they agree with the powers that be appears to have become a pattern for this town government.  It has infiltrated the Planning Board (which Mr. Fullerton serves on).  That Board which has a continual need for alternate and new members refused to appoint a volunteer as an alternate when it had none.  That volunteer’s crime – being outspoken and criticizing that Boards actions.

It is clear that under this administration, the town’s mantra has become:  If you don’t agree with Dave, then don’t bother to apply!

One thought on “War on Volunteers”

  1. A Non-Public session to discuss the duties of a position? While discussion of an individual employee is fodder for a non-public session, this one apparently went way beyond. Discussion covered the gamut from: job duties, hiring a Summer Program Director, Charging fees for the summer program, to the Town Administrators time. The only thing they appear to have gotten right was apparently accidental: they forgot to seal the minutes of the non-public session! It is for that reason that we can discuss it.

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