Thursday, July 30, 2009

No slice of Jack for you or you*

There were many objections from both the council and from the audience and it's a sad day for Amesbury and Salisbury.

Amesbury Mayor Thatcher Kezer's Chief of Staff Kendra Amaral exited city council chambers, cheeks flaming. At-large councillor and candidate for mayor Donna Holaday looked pale and drawn. James Shanley was James Shanley (he's nothing if not consistent).

Holaday, who criticized people who criticized the agreement without reading it, went on the rail against the city's previous animal control officer, saying we would have, "better animal control services than ever before in this city."

That went over really well with our last ACO, Becky Taylor, who was in the audience. After the meeting, Holaday was accosted in the hallway by both people from Newburyport and from Amesbury, where the long-time ACO was booted in anticipation of this agreement going through.

Turned out that Holaday was referring to Carol LaRoque, who was 2 ACOs ago. Holaday's objection was that LaRoque worked for both Newburyport and Newbury (where she works now).

Someone informed Holaday that LaRoque worked for Newbury in addition to Newburyport and was not in fact working in Newbury on our dime, as Holaday apparently thought.

I will note here that Becky once came to my house at 10 p.m. to rescue a loose dog that had slumped on my porch.

The rest of it was all about dollars and the landfill. At-large councillor Steve Hutcheson pointed out that the stated $37,646 in "savings" did not include the cost of coming up with (8 or so versions of) the agreement or any other costs that no one knows about.

Hutcheson said after the meeting that you can't have zero expenses when there were expenses. That was pretty amusing.

The words "dilution of services" were said a lot.

Mayor John Moak told the Council that the city can now stop monitoring the landfill as much because the DEP is on the case now. And we know how effective DEP has been at staying on New Ventures' case (sorry Dick Chalpin).

He also said that the in this case, the mayor does not have the power to opt out of the contract - it's in the hands of the City Council, he said.

Sort of like how the landfill Host Community Agreement is in the City Council's hands?

Good grief!

Landfill neighbor Mary Wolf said that some DEP person told her earlier today - at her home - that the landfill won't be capped until next year (as opposed to the schedule, which outlines numbers of days and penalties for not meeting the schedule and such).

The only 2 candidates for public office that I could identify in the audience were both from Ward 3: Robert Cronin and Dawne Shand. Ari Herzog is out of town because of a death in the family.

Barry Connell was not at the meeting. I believe he also has a family issue.

*Credit to the Ward 4 councillor for the inspiration

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