CHARTER PROCESS IS BEST
To my fellow Newry citizens:
I stand behind our dedicated staff at the Town Office 100 percent. This is not about them or the work they do. They are all dedicated, honest and truthful people doing a great service to the town and the people they serve. It's not easy being on the front line. Thank you.
I do not take the tremendous responsibility of being an elected official lightly. When I took an oath I made a promise to God in front of all of you to uphold the rule of law.
I made a promise to you to uphold the Constitution of the United States, Constitution of the State of Maine and the rules and regulations of the town.
I will not compromise my promise to do my duty. Part of that is the obligation to speak up when the need arises. The hardest thing I encounter in my years of service has been to speak the truth and point out when we are operating outside of the rule of law. The truth is a hard pill to swallow for some, but medicine we all need to take.
In the haste to govern land use we neglected to come up with a plan to govern our elected and appointed officials. Establishing a town Charter Commission as provided by Maine law is the responsible and transparent way to accomplish that. In a fair and open process by six elected and three appointed registered voters. (30-A M.R.S.A. §§ 2101-2109)
The Maine Municipal Association provides this comment in the Municipal Officers’ Manual “What is a “'Charter'”?
“Although Maine law does not specifically define “charter,” it generally is understood to mean a single document setting forth a plan of municipal government comparable to the state and federal Constitutions. Typically, a charter specifies the form of government (e.g., town meeting-selectmen, town meeting-selectmen-manager, council-manager), the distribution of legislative, executive and other powers, the delegation of various legal and administrative functions, and the procedures for making and implementing budgetary decisions, among other things.”
A charter will restore the balance of powers back in our government. This effort is not about personalities, it’s about processes and procedures.
Please support the process that a charter commission provides. It will propose procedures in the form of a charter that registered voters will either vote to accept or deny, an open and honest process no one should fear.
The selectman meet next at 7 a.m. April 16 at the Town Office.