Concerns About the Future of the Library

Amanda Henshon–Wellesley Townsman, March 10, 2016

“A risky scheme like the one proposed might make sense if Wellesley were a struggling municipality – or perhaps if the Library were lacking.  It is not.  Are we prepared to take a chance on this new plan that is as extreme as any adopted in Massachusetts?”  

Continue reading “Concerns About the Future of the Library”

More Library Concerns

Deirdre Hearn–Wellesley Townsman, March 10, 2016

“Library trustees in the vast majority of Massachusetts towns hire and manage the library director, not the town manager…..The TGSC never reported this fact to Town Meeting, and they acknowledged, upon questioning, that they never even discussed this issue in all their interviews with other town managers.

Continue reading “More Library Concerns”

Thorough, Transparent and Inclusive Make Wellesley’s “Secret Formula”

Suzy Littlefield–Wellesley Townsman, March 10, 2016

“Those who are concerned about upcoming decisions on the Hardy/Hunnewell/Upham Schools and uses for the North 40 should be especially concerned about the authority given to the Town Manager under the Special Act”.

Continue reading “Thorough, Transparent and Inclusive Make Wellesley’s “Secret Formula””

School Decisions and Town Manager–Citizen Involvement is Critical

Larry Kaplan, MD–Wellesley Townsman, March 10, 2016

For those Wellesley parents who are concerned about saving neighborhood schools, the proposed town manager structure is likely to create another hurdle for citizen involvement in participatory government. Under this proposal, there will be increased pressure to close schools as town government focuses more on efficiencies and cost savings than on educational excellence. As a corollary to VOTING NO on this ballot question, Wellesley residents need to elect school committee members who are willing to act as fiduciaries for their constituents rather than rubber-stamp administration decisions.

Larry Kaplan MD

8 High Meadow Circle

Wellesley, MA 02482

Change is Too Radical and Divisive

Andy Wrobel–Wellesley Townsman, March 10, 2016

“I love change – but it needs to be a change that is embraced by the many.” 

I am going to vote NO on March 15th for the new Town government structure for two reasons: it is too divisive and it reduces the power of citizens to enhance (and perhaps more importantly protect) the character of this Town.

First, I love change – but it needs to be a change that is embraced by the many.   No doubt that our current government could use some improvement but 40% of Town Meeting Members thought this change was too much change.  To change a sign law we need a 2/3 majority in Town Meeting but to radically alter the Town’s government structure we only need (and only received)  a simple majority?   This proposal dramatically reduces the influence of the boards in town and marginalizes the highly skilled and passionate volunteers that helps give Wellesley its small feel.   Most of the elected Boards in Town spoke out against this change.  Many past Board of Selectmen are opposed to this centralization of power.  This change is too radical and certainly too divisive.

Second, as a Town Meeting member,  I am sensitive to the emails I received from distressed Hardy parents who felt that the decision to close Hardy School was made by a small insider group without citizen input. I am concerned that If the town manager proposal is passed on March 15th, there will be a lot more of these closed door decisions. The Town Manager is not required to have open meetings – as the boards are.  This is the way the law is set up.  Concentrating power in one person who doesn’t have to allow a forum for citizen input on key decisions is not what Wellesley wants.  A new town manager’s strongest mandate is expected to be tighter budget management.  If you want to save neighborhood schools (which will be more expensive but help to keep our small Town feel), think ahead, get to the polls on March 15th and VOTE NO. The same applies to the fate of the North 40 and the branch libraries.  Keep citizen government in Wellesley – join me and VOTE NO.

— Andy Wrobel  TMM, Precinct G, Board of Recreation

Serious Concerns From Sustainable Wellesley

Quentin Prideaux, President, Sustainable Wellesley, on behalf of the SW Leadership Team–From Wellesley Townsman February 25, 2016

“We do not go to a doctor who is paid by a fast-food company, to a lawyer who represents our adversary, or to a financial advisor with only one CD to sell. We go to impartial experts who are free to speak their mind, and having listened to their advice, we decide, not them or their backers.”

Read entire article below.

Continue reading “Serious Concerns From Sustainable Wellesley”