Monday, April 28, 2014

Board of Health, Library Trustees, and Town Meeting Endorsements

Board of Health

There are two candidates for a 1 year term and both offer good backgrounds for the Board.  Laura Richards is an Attorney specializing in Public Health Law, and works with the Massachusetts Association of Health Boards. The Association assists local Boards of Health in meeting their statutory obligations.  Cindy Christiansen is on the faculty of the Boston University School of Public Health where she teaches statistics and works on research in the Public Health field.

It is refreshing to have two highly qualified residents offering their service to the town. I’ve decided to support Laura Richards because I feel her expertise is both more central to the Board of Health’s mission and represents a unique need on the Board. Much of what the Board does revolves around understanding state statutes and numerous regulatory codes. This is precisely the work Laura Richards  performs at the MAHB. Cindy Christiansen’s expertise at the B.U. School of Health, while applicable to a Board of Health is duplicative of skills already on the Board. Roxanne Musto is a Nurse and Ann Fidler is an Epidemiologist who also happens to be a faculty member and Assistant Dean at the Boston University School of Public Health. In addition, Laura has been on the board for the better part of a year filling the term of Timothy Lowney.

Please vote for Laura Richards tomorrow.

Library Trustees

There are five candidates running for three seats on the Library Board –incumbents Kristine Hodlin and Frank Schroth, as well as John Folcarelli, Sheryl Fleitman, and Edward Duffy.

I am supporting both of the incumbents. Kris and Frank are completing their first term. Usually first terms are spent getting acquainted with the role and responsibility with a greater assumption of leadership in a second term. But both incumbents have made significant contributions in their first terms. Frank introduced a town-wide reading program that has been taken over by the Friends of the Library and worked on customer service issues. Kris took charge of the renegotiation of the Kidder contract and spearheaded the move of the Library Trust Funds to a new investment firm. Their performance over three years easily merits a second term to build on the strong start they’ve made and to continue to work with and support the Library Director they participated in hiring.

John Folcarelli would make an excellent new addition to the Board of Trustees. John is an Attorney, experienced in labor law. He spent five years on the Warrant Committee, serving as the Chair of the Library sub-committee.  I can assure you, after 5 years he knows that budget cold. John has the reputation of being exceptionally thoughtful and hardworking, with strong consensus building skills. I’m also told that he has a personal library of around 2000 volumes.

I hope you’ll vote for Kris, Frank and John tomorrow.

Precinct 3 Town Meeting

Finally I’m asking those of you from Precinct 3 to give Nancy and me two of your votes tomorrow for Town Meeting.

Nancy and I have served in Town Meeting for approximately 15 years, serving the residents from Precincts 9, 10 and now 3. And no, we have not moved.

Nancy and I both served on the Warrant Committee for 4 and 5 years respectively. Nancy was a member of two school site councils and for a number of years the President of the Milton League of Women Voters.  Aside from my time on the Warrant Committee, I’ve maintained this blog on and off for 9 years, coached Youth Basketball, and presently serve on the Town/Schools Consolidation Committee.  We’d appreciate your support. In any event, get out and vote!

Board of Assessors

I'm supporting Brian Cronin for Board of Assessors.  Brian has a technology background, a useful addition to a Board of Real Estate professionals,  as well as deep knowledge of the town. He'll be a welcome addition to that Board.




Anonymous Anonymous said...

Luara "was an attorney for the Massachusetts Association of Health Boards". In a debate she identified herself as a tax attorney. None of her work with MAHB is current. Health Boards seldom need attorneys. In the last year they used the Town attorney once.

7:54 AM  
Anonymous Laura Richards said...

I write in response to the recent anonymously posted comment to make sure that there are no misunderstandings about my legal experience and candidacy for the Board of Health. I have been employed by the Massachusetts Association of Health Boards as a staff attorney in the past and currently consult with them on an as needed basis. If the point of the comment was to illustrate that I have both a public health and tax law background - guilty as charged. I continue to respectfully ask for your support. Thank you.

10:56 AM  
Blogger Philip Mathews said...

Thank you for the clarification Laura. I think the logic of the anonymous comment speaks for itself. On the one hand the claim is made that Health Boards do not need attorney's, and on the other your experience is out of date. Sounds like someone is hedging their bets. And just how is the need to use the Town Attorney only once in the past year evidence that the Board didn't benefit from having a Public Law Attorney sitting on the Board? In fact, the benefit would be expected to minimize the need to consult Town Counsel.

11:27 AM  
Blogger Philip Mathews said...

That should be "public health attorney".

11:28 AM  

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