Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Kinder Morgan pipeline accidents since 2003

A review of accidents on Kinder Morgan pipelines across the country shows more than 20 since 2003 that were serious enough to be reported to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration. Here are some examples:

August 2003: Kinder Morgan 26-inch diameter natural gas pipeline exploded in a farming area in Caddo County, Okla., throwing a 54-foot long section of pipe 30 feet from the ditch.

May 2005: Kinder Morgan 30-inch diameter natural gas pipeline exploded near Marshall, Texas, sending a giant fireball into the sky and hurling a 160-foot section of pipe onto the grounds of an electric power generating plant. Two people were hurt, 40 evacuated.

July 2006: Kinder Morgan Tennessee Gas pipeline exploded near Campbellsville, Ky., blowing a 25-foot chunk of pipe out of the ground and sending it 200 feet away.

September 2008: Kinder Morgan gas pipeline manifold exploded and burned for more than 10 hours in Pasadena, Texas, injuring one employee. The Houston Chronicle reported the blaze "could be seen for miles."

August 2011: A flash fire at a Kinder Morgan gas pipeline south of Herscher, Ill., sent five employees to the hospital.

November 2011: A weld failed on a 36-inch diameter Kinder Morgan Tennessee Gas Pipeline near Glouster, Ohio, leading to an explosion that caused a blast crater 30 feet across and 15 feet deep. Three homes were destroyed by the fire.

June 2012: A 26-inch Kinder Morgan natural gas pipeline failed in Gray County, Texas, blowing a crater 30 feet in diameter, burning two acres of agricultural land and closing State Highway 152 for several hours.

June 2013: in Louisiana, a 30-inch diameter Kinder Morgan pipeline ruptured and exploded in a rural area of Washington Parish. No one was seriously hurt, but 55 homes were evacuated.

- See more at: http://www.unionleader.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20150208/NEWS05/150209202/1010/NEWS0606#sthash.IMMKgaKA.dpuf
A review of accidents on Kinder Morgan pipelines across the country shows more than 20 since 2003 that were serious enough to be reported to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration. Here are some examples:

August 2003: Kinder Morgan 26-inch diameter natural gas pipeline exploded in a farming area in Caddo County, Okla., throwing a 54-foot long section of pipe 30 feet from the ditch.

May 2005: Kinder Morgan 30-inch diameter natural gas pipeline exploded near Marshall, Texas, sending a giant fireball into the sky and hurling a 160-foot section of pipe onto the grounds of an electric power generating plant. Two people were hurt, 40 evacuated.

July 2006: Kinder Morgan Tennessee Gas pipeline exploded near Campbellsville, Ky., blowing a 25-foot chunk of pipe out of the ground and sending it 200 feet away.

September 2008: Kinder Morgan gas pipeline manifold exploded and burned for more than 10 hours in Pasadena, Texas, injuring one employee. The Houston Chronicle reported the blaze "could be seen for miles."

August 2011: A flash fire at a Kinder Morgan gas pipeline south of Herscher, Ill., sent five employees to the hospital.

November 2011: A weld failed on a 36-inch diameter Kinder Morgan Tennessee Gas Pipeline near Glouster, Ohio, leading to an explosion that caused a blast crater 30 feet across and 15 feet deep. Three homes were destroyed by the fire.

June 2012: A 26-inch Kinder Morgan natural gas pipeline failed in Gray County, Texas, blowing a crater 30 feet in diameter, burning two acres of agricultural land and closing State Highway 152 for several hours.

June 2013: in Louisiana, a 30-inch diameter Kinder Morgan pipeline ruptured and exploded in a rural area of Washington Parish. No one was seriously hurt, but 55 homes were evacuated.
- See more at: http://www.unionleader.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20150208/NEWS05/150209202/1010/NEWS0606#sthash.IMMKgaKA.dpuf
A review of accidents on Kinder Morgan pipelines across the country shows more than 20 since 2003 that were serious enough to be reported to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration. Here are some examples:

August 2003: Kinder Morgan 26-inch diameter natural gas pipeline exploded in a farming area in Caddo County, Okla., throwing a 54-foot long section of pipe 30 feet from the ditch.

May 2005: Kinder Morgan 30-inch diameter natural gas pipeline exploded near Marshall, Texas, sending a giant fireball into the sky and hurling a 160-foot section of pipe onto the grounds of an electric power generating plant. Two people were hurt, 40 evacuated.

July 2006: Kinder Morgan Tennessee Gas pipeline exploded near Campbellsville, Ky., blowing a 25-foot chunk of pipe out of the ground and sending it 200 feet away.

September 2008: Kinder Morgan gas pipeline manifold exploded and burned for more than 10 hours in Pasadena, Texas, injuring one employee. The Houston Chronicle reported the blaze "could be seen for miles."

August 2011: A flash fire at a Kinder Morgan gas pipeline south of Herscher, Ill., sent five employees to the hospital.

November 2011: A weld failed on a 36-inch diameter Kinder Morgan Tennessee Gas Pipeline near Glouster, Ohio, leading to an explosion that caused a blast crater 30 feet across and 15 feet deep. Three homes were destroyed by the fire.

June 2012: A 26-inch Kinder Morgan natural gas pipeline failed in Gray County, Texas, blowing a crater 30 feet in diameter, burning two acres of agricultural land and closing State Highway 152 for several hours.

June 2013: in Louisiana, a 30-inch diameter Kinder Morgan pipeline ruptured and exploded in a rural area of Washington Parish. No one was seriously hurt, but 55 homes were evacuated.
- See more at: http://www.unionleader.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20150208/NEWS05/150209202/1010/NEWS0606#sthash.IMMKgaKA.dpuf
A review of accidents on Kinder Morgan pipelines across the country shows more than 20 since 2003 that were serious enough to be reported to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration. Here are some examples:

August 2003: Kinder Morgan 26-inch diameter natural gas pipeline exploded in a farming area in Caddo County, Okla., throwing a 54-foot long section of pipe 30 feet from the ditch.

May 2005: Kinder Morgan 30-inch diameter natural gas pipeline exploded near Marshall, Texas, sending a giant fireball into the sky and hurling a 160-foot section of pipe onto the grounds of an electric power generating plant. Two people were hurt, 40 evacuated.

July 2006: Kinder Morgan Tennessee Gas pipeline exploded near Campbellsville, Ky., blowing a 25-foot chunk of pipe out of the ground and sending it 200 feet away.

September 2008: Kinder Morgan gas pipeline manifold exploded and burned for more than 10 hours in Pasadena, Texas, injuring one employee. The Houston Chronicle reported the blaze "could be seen for miles."

August 2011: A flash fire at a Kinder Morgan gas pipeline south of Herscher, Ill., sent five employees to the hospital.

November 2011: A weld failed on a 36-inch diameter Kinder Morgan Tennessee Gas Pipeline near Glouster, Ohio, leading to an explosion that caused a blast crater 30 feet across and 15 feet deep. Three homes were destroyed by the fire.

June 2012: A 26-inch Kinder Morgan natural gas pipeline failed in Gray County, Texas, blowing a crater 30 feet in diameter, burning two acres of agricultural land and closing State Highway 152 for several hours.

June 2013: in Louisiana, a 30-inch diameter Kinder Morgan pipeline ruptured and exploded in a rural area of Washington Parish. No one was seriously hurt, but 55 homes were evacuated.
- See more at: http://www.unionleader.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20150208/NEWS05/150209202/1010/NEWS0606#sthash.IMMKgaKA.dpuf

Wall Street Worries About Kinder Morgan’s Safety Record

BC pipeline operator slashes and defers maintenance spending. 
 
Kinder Morgan is a titan in the North American energy sector and a major player in Northwest fossil fuel shipments. The firm was the author of a failed scheme to export huge volumes of coal on the Columbia River in Oregon, and it is lobbying heavily to triple its oil pipeline through British Columbia in a bid to move more tar sands oil to Washington refineries and Asian markets.
It is also, as Sightline has documented, a dangerous and irresponsible company with a clear history of law breaking, deceit, and pollution.
Last week, a financial research firm, Hedgeye, released a scathing report on Kinder Morgan that supports many of Sightline’s conclusions. Aptly titled Is Kinder Morgan Maintaining its Stock Prices Instead of its Assets? (no longer available online), the report is mainly concerned with Kinder Morgan’s books, but it includes a few bombshells that should worry the public.
Consider just this sampling from the summary section:
We believe that Kinder Morgan’s high-level business strategy is to starve its pipelines and related infrastructure of routine maintenance spending in order to maximize Distributable Cash Flow…
And:

A broader, and more important concern is the reliability and safety of Kinder Morgan’s pipeline’s. In 2012, Kinder Morgan acquired El Paso, then the largest natural gas pipeline company in the US, in a +$30B deal; Kinder Morgan has already cut maintenance expenses by 70-99% and maintenance [capital expenditures] by ~60% on most of those assets. In our view, it is alarming that Kinder Morgan supporters believe that this is a sound business practice.
The report goes on to detail specific maintenance spending deferrals, and it enumerates a few of the mishaps—some of them deadly—that Kinder Morgan’s pipelines have suffered in recent years.

 The Hedgeye analysis made waves in the investment community. It also came in for a bit of a drubbing from company boosters (here’s some of the back and forth) and I’m certainly in no position to weigh in on the accuracy of the report’s assertions about finance. Yet we do know that the report is consistent with Kinder Morgan’s well-documented track record of law-breaking, pollution, and cover-ups.

You can find more Sightline research on Kinder Morgan here:

With limited power, local conservation commissions weigh in on pipeline plan

By Martha Shanahan Sentinel Staff


As plans progress for a Kinder Morgan-owned natural gas pipeline that would pass through southern New Hampshire, local conservation organizations are weighing their options.
At its regular meeting Monday night, members of the Fitzwilliam Conservation Commission reviewed a draft of a letter they plan to submit to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the government agency charged with reviewing Kinder Morgan’s proposal.
“The mission of the Fitzwilliam Conservation Commission is to protect the natural resources of the Town of Fitzwilliam, New Hampshire,” the letter begins.
The commission’s members bent their heads around the letter and read through it again. The letter detailed the Fitzwilliam conservation land, lakes, rivers, streams and wetlands that the proposed pipeline would pass through.
The route proposed outlined in a November proposal from Kinder Morgan shows the pipeline crossing Fitzwilliam though some areas of conserved land and wetlands, including Scott Pond and Little Monadnock Mountain.
In addition to thousands of miles from Pennsylvania to Dracut, Mass., the project would cross a total of 6.75 miles in Fitzwilliam, 6.14 in Richmond, 8.9 in Rindge, 1.59 in Troy and 5.57 in Winchester.
The commission’s letter voices local concerns — how drilling and placing the pipeline could affect the town’s drinking water sources, and global ones — how extending New Hampshire’s dependence on fossil fuels like natural gas could contribute to climate change.
“I think it’s good,” commission member Barbara Green said.
The others agreed, and briefly discussed small changes they could make to the wording or order of the letter’s points.
They voted unanimously to send it to FERC using its online commenting system. There, it will join letters from residents of places all along the pipeline’s route opposing the plan for the project.
But even as the environmental advocate for the town, the conservation commission’s options for entering the pipeline conversation are fairly limited.
“Our primary focus is on the environmental interests of Fitzwilliam,” Fitzwilliam Conservation Commission Chairman Paul M. Kotila told The Sentinel Monday. “Where is this pipeline going to go, what kind of impact will it have? ... Our assignment as a conservation commission is to monitor and plan for those kinds of situations.”
It can be hard to monitor or plan, though, when most of the information the commission has comes from its own research.
Kinder Morgan, a Houston-based energy company that owns pipelines all over the country, has not gained much trust among the residents of the towns on the proposed route.
It has offered some information to town officials and has already sent representatives to meet with property owners whose land would be affected. But most people, conservation commission members alike, feel they’re in the dark about the possible extent of the pipeline’s effects.
“They’re being nebulous as to what they’re doing,” Fitzwilliam commission member Hiel Lindquist said.
The commission’s members have been forced to do their own research, investigating other pipelines the company has built and listening to the hefty coalition of New Hampshire and Massachusetts residents who have dedicated their lives this year to studying and opposing Kinder Morgan’s foray into New England.
“I don’t know what the alternative is, because (the information) is not being provided by Kinder Morgan,” Fitzwilliam coalition member Barbara Green said.
While conservation commissions in Massachusetts towns have legal standing, New Hampshire commissions act only in an advisory role to their towns and lawmakers.
William C. Preston, vice chairman of the Rindge Conservation Commission, said members of that group feel similarly limited in their powers to stand up against the pipeline plan.
“It doesn’t seem as though we have the power to do much,” Preston said.
He said the Rindge commission also has concerns that range from global warming to the composition of Rindge’s wetlands.
The Rindge commission has written a similar statement of opposition and submitted it to the FERC website.
More information about Kinder Morgan’s plans might set their minds at ease, Preston said, but he thinks that is unlikely.
“We sent a letter to them that our practice, if someone wants to do something … is to have them come to us and explain what they want to do,” Preston said. “We haven’t had any response.”
As best as it can, Lindquist said, the commissions are trying to follow their own mission statements.
“We try to reflect what the town feels about these issues,” he said.
But without an assurance from Kinder Morgan or FERC, conservation officials in the towns are left to imagine the worst.
“The specifics are the thing that are uncertain,” Kotila said.
If the pipeline runs under Scott Pond, for instance, the commission members have heard that construction would involve constructing several new roads.
At that suggestion, the members spent several minutes discussing the mess that could create.
Conservation organizations such as the Monadnock Conservancy are also participating in the pipeline conversation, with somewhat more ease than the town commissions.
Because the Conservancy actually owns holds the easements for the land that could be affected by the pipeline, its staff are in direct contact with Kinder Morgan officials.
These parcels, both in Rindge, include Converse Meadow, a town-owned property on which the conservancy owns an easement, and Town Hill Farm, which is privately owned.
Executive Director Ryan Owens said he hopes the conservancy can convince Kinder Morgan to at least build around those properties.
“We are sharing with Kinder Morgan officials the maps ... that overlay the route with state conservation lands,” he said. “We’re indicating that our expectation is that they will find ways to avoid those properties.”
“It’s too early to say, but I’m hopeful,” he added.
The members of public conservation commissions remain determined to show they deserve a voice.

The New Hampshire Association of Conservation Commissions has organized a meeting next week where members of local commissions will discuss how they can be involved with the pipeline plans.
The Fitzwilliam commission members realized at their meeting Monday that the association’s meeting would conflict with a Kinder Morgan open house, one of several open houses that Kinder Morgan has scheduled in the area.
Fitzwilliam Selectmen Chairwoman Susan S. Silverman urged the commission members to go to the association meeting. She reminded the members that Kinder Morgan had pushed much of its original pipeline route north out of Massachusetts, partly in the face of opposition from Bay State residents.
“There was a reason for that, and the reason was people like you guys,” she said.

Martha Shanahan can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1434, or mshanahan@keenesentinel.com. Follow her on Twitter @MShanahanKS.

Court action becomes less likely in Winchester budget disagreement

By Meghan Foley Sentinel Staff


WINCHESTER — Legal wrangling feared by selectmen because the budget committee didn’t take a side on the water and sewer budgets may not happen, according to a state official.
Under state law, the budget committee is required to present a proposed operating budget to voters. Usually, such a budget would include water and sewer department expenses, if the town has them. In Winchester, the water and sewer budgets are separated from the operating budget, and set by the selectmen. But they still need budget committee support.
Since it appears the committee technically didn’t set budgets for the water and sewer departments this year, state law would allow the selectmen’s budget to move forward, said Stephan W. Hamilton, director of the municipal and property division of the N.H. Department of Revenue Administration.
That wasn’t true three years ago, when the budget committee recommended against the water and sewer department budgets, and state officials translated that to mean it funded both items at $0. And that sent the matter to the courts.
The only glitch this time is that, according to state law, there must be a notarized statement included with the budget saying in the absence of the budget committee’s recommendation, the number comes from selectmen, Hamilton said.
Hamilton doesn’t believe such a letter was included with the Winchester water and sewer budgets, and at some point, state and town officials may have to meet about it.
At next month’s town meeting, voters will consider three budget warrant articles.
The first is the proposed $3,410,489 operating budget for 2015-16, which voters amended from the original amount of $3,384,489. The second article is the proposed $337,942 sewer department budget, and the third is the proposed $250,203 water department budget. The water and sewer department budgets are supported by user fees, and not taxes.
While the budget committee made the roughly $3.3 million recommendation for the operating budget, it made no recommendations on the water and sewer portions of the budget.
Budget committee Chairman Brian Moser said Monday the committee voted on the warrant articles for the water and sewer department this year, and it was a tie vote, which meant no recommendation.
The selectmen set the water and sewer budgets, and for the past three or four years, have put them on the warrant as articles separate from the operating budget, he said.
“We’d like to see them back in the actual town budget,” he said.
At the town’s deliberative session on Feb. 7, Selectmen Chairwoman Roberta A. Fraser said the budget committee’s inaction on the water and sewer department budgets would likely result in the town having to settle the matter in court.
Her prediction was based on what happened in 2012, when the budget committee decided not to recommend money for the water and sewer budgets, but changed its mind during the deliberative session.
However, the state department of revenue administration used the budget proposal made before the deliberative session to calculate the town’s spending limit, and that invalidated the money that was added for water and sewer departments — even though voters had approved it.
According to state law, voters can’t increase a budget by more than 10 percent of the budget committee’s recommendation.
Selectmen petitioned Cheshire County Superior Court to be allowed to exceed the spending limit, saying the budget committee failed to provide proper funding for the water and sewer departments.
The court ruled in the selectmen’s favor in June 2012, allowing Winchester’s spending limit to be increased, which added back the money invalidated by the state.

Meghan Foley can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1436, or mfoley@keenesentinel.com. Follow her on Twitter @MFoleyKS.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Winchester School Board takes stance against proposed natural gas pipeline

By Meghan Foley Sentinel Staff




WINCHESTER — The school board has taken a stance against Kinder Morgan’s proposed natural gas pipeline, saying the project would put the safety of the town’s students at risk.
School board members explained their opposition to the project in a Feb. 7 letter to residents and members of town boards, saying they “feel this project is a safety concern to our children and our citizens as it has the possibility of contaminating our drinking water.
“In addition, our school buses will be crossing the pipeline several times throughout the day. We feel this puts our children at an unnecessary risk,” they said.
The Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co., a Kinder Morgan company, is proposing construction of a 36-inch-wide pipeline to carry natural gas from shale gas fields in Pennsylvania through upstate New York, part of northern Massachusetts and into southern New Hampshire before going to a distribution hub in eastern Massachusetts.
Monadnock Region communities in the path of the proposed pipeline are Fitzwilliam, Richmond, Rindge, Troy and Winchester.
The letter, which was signed by all five members of the Winchester School Board, said the pipeline is proposed to pass about a mile from Winchester School, which is also an emergency shelter for the town.
“Due to the fact we are also a shelter for our community, we do not feel we are prepared for a possible disaster that can and has occurred with similar pipeline projects,” the letter says.
School board members are also concerned about the pipeline’s proposed path through the town’s largest aquifer, according to the letter.
Besides Winchester, other area districts with schools within 5 miles of the path of the pipeline include Monadnock Regional, with Emerson Elementary School in Fitzwilliam and Troy Elementary School, and Jaffrey-Rindge Cooperative, with Rindge Memorial School.
F. Barrett Faulkner of Swanzey, chairman of the Monadnock school board, said Friday his board hasn’t taken a position on the project, and board members have declined in the past to weigh in on issues that aren’t directly related to providing education.
However, he doesn’t know what the board will do, if anything, about the proposed pipeline, he said.
The Jaffrey-Rindge board hasn’t taken a position on the project, according to board meeting minutes.
The proposed pipeline is expected to travel through 17 towns in New Hampshire.
Outside of the Monadnock Region, other public schools near the proposed pipeline path include Amherst Middle School, Litchfield Middle School and Souhegan High School in Amherst, according to mapping expert and Greenville resident Jim Giddings.
Giddings, who is with the anti-pipeline activist group NH Pipeline Awareness, said Friday Souhegan High School is partially within the 900-foot “incineration zone” around the pipeline if it were to detonate.
The Winchester letter ends with school board members asking other town boards to join them in keeping the town safe.
School board Chairman Rick Horton said Thursday that when board members heard about the proposed pipeline, they began seeking information about it.
As elected officials responsible for the roughly 700 students enrolled in the school district, board members believe they need to be informed on this matter, he said.
“The priority of the school board is not only to educate local children, but also make sure they’re safe,” he said.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Winchester officials looking for voters to pass housing ordinance

By Meghan Foley Sentinel Staff
WINCHESTER — Local officials want the rental properties in their town to be safe for residents, and they’re supporting a proposed ordinance they say would help them accomplish this.
Several residents who weighed in on the proposal at the town’s deliberative session on Feb. 7 said they agree the welfare of their neighbors is important. However, one man also said he was concerned the cost of regularly inspecting more than 500 rental properties would be greater than town officials are projecting.
“I just can’t see how this is not going to result in at least another full-time employee,” resident and property owner Kenneth A. Cole told The Sentinel Monday, adding to his remarks from the Feb. 7 session.
Town officials have undertaken a worthy effort to establish and enact the ordinance, he said, but he’s “pretty sure” it’s going to be more costly to the town than the selectmen and planning board members believe.
Officials say it would require more hours for a part-time inspector, but those would be offset by new inspection fees.
The ordinance, if passed, allows for town officials to inspect rental properties biannually to make sure they’re in compliance, and requires landlords to fix any problems. If a building or apartment unit doesn’t pass the initial inspection, another one would be required a year later until the problems are fixed, according to the proposed ordinance.
After the initial inspection cycle, no landlord could rent a property without the town issuing a permit saying the dwelling is in compliance, said Margaret A. Sharra, the town’s land use administrator and code enforcement officer.
Landlords would be required to pay $35 for the inspection of one unit, and $50 for a house, according to the ordinance. Inspection of each additional dwelling unit would cost $20.
Re-inspection fees would start at $15 per unit for the first time, $35 per unit for the second time and increase for each additional inspection after that, Sharra said.
At present, town officials enter a rental property only if they’re allowed to by the tenant or landlord, and it’s usually after the tenant or the landlord asks them to come out to the property to check something, she said.
Town policy also allows for local officials to inspect a dwelling if the person or family living there is receiving assistance from the town, she said.
To accommodate the additional inspections, an inspector position would be increased from 16 to 32 hours a week, she said. The newly generated inspection fees would pay for those added hours, she said.
Sharra said Saturday there is a need for the ordinance based on what she, the building inspector, health officer, fire chief, police chief and welfare officer have seen while inspecting houses and apartments being rented.
What they’ve spotted are illegal heating setups, undisclosed lead paint, leaking roofs, substandard plumbing, stairwells in poor condition and a lack of fire and carbon monoxide alarms, she said.
“We find that most tenants and landlords don’t realize what a code-compliant property is,” she said. “We have to make sure people are living in decent housing.”
At its root, this is a code enforcement issue, Sharra said, but the goal, if the ordinance goes into effect, would be to educate landlords and tenants.
“Right now the town of Winchester has over 542 rental units in town, that we know of,” she said. “That’s over 31 percent of the housing stock.”
Most of those buildings were constructed in the late 1800s and early 1900s, and have one or more life-safety code violations, Sharra said.
If the new ordinance passes, town officials would still need permission from landlords and tenants to enter properties to inspect them, according to Sharra, who is also a local landlord.
If they refuse, town officials could enter the site only after getting an administrative order to do so from the court, she said.
“In the worst-case scenario, a landlord may deny access or disagree with the town. We could end up in court, but I don’t see that as the norm by any means,” she said.
Despite resident Cole’s concerns, the proposed ordinance has already garnered support among townspeople.
The Winchester Board of Selectmen has unanimously recommended voters approve the ordinance at town meeting on March 10.
The ordinance gets people thinking, and raises awareness about the health and safety issues many of the town’s residents face, Selectman Sherman Tedford said at the deliberative session.
Resident Barry Montgomery, a real estate developer, also spoke in favor of the ordinance, saying “inspectors are us builders’ friends.”
Sharra said Monday she had been working on drafting the ordinance for more than a year and a half, and its content is a combination of housing standards already in place in New Hampshire communities including Keene, Claremont, Durham, Manchester and Pittsfield. Pittsfield’s ordinance has been in place since 1966, she said.
Besides striving to provide safe living quarters for tenants, the ordinance would also benefit landlords, she said.
The permit gives landlords documentation of their properties being in compliance, she said, and that can be helpful if tenants dispute the dwelling units’ conditions.
If voters at town meeting pass the ordinance, it wouldn’t go into effect until Sept. 1, she said. This would give landlords and tenants time to get their properties in compliance, she said.
If passed, a copy of the ordinance and list of what inspectors will be looking for would be included in the June tax bills, she said.


Meghan Foley can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1436, or mfoley@keenesentinel.com. Follow her on Twitter @MFoleyKS.

Guess it must be time to hire another Sharra.
The town doesn't need an ordinance, it's already documented who rents property and tenants and landlords should already know about their rights under the law. . If not then here's link that's available to all for free ...

http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/overview-landlord-tenant-laws-new-hampshire.html


The Land Use Administrator/Code Enforcement Officer could simply make sure all landlords and tenants know about the their rights under the law by simply providing them this link. We don't need another full time position/employee, it's totally unnecessary 





Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Not in anyone's backyard, by Jeanne Sable


I’d like to add to Susan Wessels’ “Reasons to Oppose Pipeline” (Feb. 5).
The Kinder Morgan/Tennessee Gas Pipeline plan to construct a 36-inch, high-pressure natural gas pipeline parallel to electrical transmission lines through seventeen New Hampshire communities might be laughable if it weren’t so dangerous.

We are called the “Granite State” for a reason. Workers would have to blast through nearly 80 miles of granite boulders and ledge to bury this oversized pipeline. The toxic chemicals used in blasting could easily contaminate the many lakes, ponds, rivers, streams and wetlands it traverses, and pollute the precious aquifers that provide drinking water for the vast majority of residents in these small New Hampshire towns. Herbicides to remove vegetation along the corridor would have similar impact.
The co-location of high-pressure pipelines adjacent to high voltage electric transmission lines is an even greater recipe for disaster. Ruptures occur even at pressures much lower than the roughly 1,500 PSI anticipated for this North East Direct (NED) pipeline. Numerous explosions, documented by the gas industry itself, have resulted in human fatalities, injuries, structure fires and acres of charred land up to 950 feet from ruptures — the area ominously referred to as the “incineration zone.”
In the densely populated Northeast, countless more citizens would be subjected to such hazards. How much time and money would local towns need to prepare volunteer fire departments and emergency personnel for a disaster of such magnitude?
Even without explosions, the “fracked” gas slated to pass through our communities presents a significant threat. Hydro fracking literally shatters the barriers between the Earth’s strata, releasing a cocktail of unknown substances that had rested deep underground, isolated from one another — and us — for eons. Pipeline leaks are common and allowed below certain levels. And the routine venting of natural gas at noisy compressor stations and other appurtenances releases methane — a powerful greenhouse gas — and other pollutants into the air, endangering health and increasing global warming.
Analysts cite ample evidence that the gas from NED is largely for export, though we would be paying for it through tariffs on New Hampshire electric bills. It’s like getting stuck with the bill for constructing a major highway through our woods, wetlands and rural neighborhoods, with no on- or off-ramps for local traffic.
But this is more than a New Hampshire issue. A growing network of citizens has been mobilizing to fight NED wherever it rears its ugly head. As we join forces across town and state lines, it occurs to me that WE are a pipeline — of people conveying truth in order to preserve our future.
We reject a private corporation’s scheme to make us pay for an obsolete infrastructure carrying dirty fossil fuel to foreign shores while the world cries out for clean air and water. We oppose riddling the countryside with dangerous natural gas pipelines, not because we are NIMBYs.
Call us NIABYs — Not In Anyone’s Backyard.
Let’s bury this pipeline proposal once and for all — by pronouncing NED dead.
Jeanne Sable
P.O. Box 712
Fitzwilliam

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Winchester deliberative session - 2015

Pickle Festival saved; racetrack regulations   are disqualified at our Town Meeting

WINCHESTER — Residents aren’t ready to sour on a popular town festival, or willing at this time to take steps to add restrictions, such as turning down the volume, at three racetracks.

A volunteer group, Winchester Proud, has made it possible for the Pickle Festival to survive another year, announcing at the town’s deliberative session Saturday morning it would take on the event. In the meantime, two petition warrant articles to further regulate Monadnock Speedway, Winchester Motorsports and Winchester Speedpark were disqualified during the five-plus hour meeting.

Roughly 80 people piled into Winchester Town Hall, including a small but forceful out-of-town pro-racetrack contingent. The town has about 2,480 registered voters.

Thirty-five warrant articles came before voters, including abolishing the Winchester Budget Committee (it was amended), and approving a town budget of more than $3 million (it was moved along, but not before a $26,000 increase).

Three other petition warrant articles, if passed, would direct town officials to take certain actions opposing the proposed construction of a pipeline by the Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. LLC, which is a Kinder Morgan Company.

The articles were moved to the warrant, but not before lengthy debate between those for and against the project.

The Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. is proposing construction of a 36-inch pipeline to carry natural gas from shale gas fields in Pennsylvania through upstate New York, part of Northern Massachusetts and into Southern New Hampshire before going to a distribution hub in Eastern Massachusetts.
The Monadnock Region communities in the path of the pipeline include Winchester, Richmond, Fitzwilliam, Troy and Rindge.

“This is our chance let a multiple-billion-dollar company know this is our town not their town,” Resident Rick Horton said.
Resident Richard Whittemore, a self-described “filthy capitalist,” said there is a shortage of power plants feeding the electric grid, and he’d like to be able to hook into a cheaper energy source.
He added that when the region loses electricity because there aren’t enough power plants, those opposing the pipeline are going to be “the biggest cry babies of all.”
Horton disagreed, saying New Hampshire produces more electricity than it uses, and as the project is being presented there are no provisions to deliver natural gas to Winchester or any towns in the path of the pipeline.

Meanwhile, the town’s Pickle Festival was in doubt after the event’s committee chairwoman, Roberta A. Fraser, also selectmen chairwoman, stepped down earlier. When no person or group stepped up, the selectmen dropped recommended funding for the festival from $4,000, a traditional amount, to $1.
But Horton and the group Winchester Proud offered to take on the work. An amendment by Fraser to restore funding to $4,000 passed, moving the article on to the warrant.
Horton, chairman of the Winchester School Board, said he’d “hate to see it go away.” He said he started Winchester Proud last summer as a Facebook page; the group’s mission is to better the community and make it a place people can be proud of, he said.

Resident Robert E. Davis, spokesman for the Winchester Noise Coalition, proposed two warrant articles seeking to enact further regulations on the racetracks. One warrant article asked voters to require selectmen to adopt bylaws for the regulation of racetracks that address hours and days of operation, limiting the number of race practice days to one four-hour slot per week, limiting the number of event days per year, and developing permit requirements for operators of the tracks.
A second warrant article sought voter approval to activate temporary regulations that would be valid until the next annual town meeting.
Those regulations would include requiring racetrack owners to install sound-engineered noise barriers and ensure every participating vehicle has a muffler that meets or exceeds the manufacturer’s specifications to reduce exhaust and engine noise.

Town Moderator Denis V. Murphy 2rd read a letter from town counsel saying the first warrant article was “void, illegal and unenforceable” because town meeting can’t force the selectmen to enact bylaws that state laws give them the ability to adopt at the board’s discretion.

Davis defended the warrant articles saying that he and the coalition’s 131 members aren’t trying to put the racetracks out of business, but make them better neighbors.
“All we want to do is have one day a weekend of enjoyment of our homes,” he said. “I ask when you vote to remember there are several coalition members with horror stories of their children crying in pain because of the noise.”
His remarks were interrupted by boos, moans and hisses from some in the audience.
Undeterred, Davis continued speaking for several more minutes, until Murphy asked him to stop — twice. Davis continued, and Murphy called Police Chief Gary A. Phillips to escort Davis from the microphone. Davis kept talking as Phillips approached and Murphy called a recess. Davis then stopped talking and sat down.

Discussion continued with several pro-racetrack speakers drawing applause for their comments.
Horton said the benefits of having clean, functional racetracks in Winchester far outweigh the negative effects.
“We are proud to have racing in this town; it’s what Winchester is known for,” he said.

Resident Margaret A. Sharra, town code enforcement officer and land-use administrator, said the racetracks are regulated by the selectmen through the permitting process, but two of the tracks were established in the 1950s and ‘60s before zoning laws.
The combined property assessment for the tracks is $1.7 million, and the businesses pay more than $48,000 in taxes a year, she said, noting that they’re also involved in the community.

The majority of voters changed both articles before placing them on the warrant.
The first article was amended to include the language “not enforceable by law.” The second article was replaced to read, “To see if the town would vote to continue operating motor vehicle race tracks in town as currently in effect.”

A sparring match between selectmen, former and current budget committee members and residents marked debate over the issue of whether to abolish the budget committee. While many residents argued the committee is needed as part of check-and-balance oversight of town government, selectmen said they weren’t doing their job and some members weren’t making decisions in the best interest of the town.
As an example, Fraser said, the budget committee voted not to make recommendations on the proposed budgets for the town water and sewer departments, which is likely going to result in litigation costs.
Budget Committee member Kenneth Cole tried to defend his board’s actions, but Fraser and Selectman Theresa G. Sepe had strong words for him and other committee members.
“Right now, we spend more on litigation than anything else,” Sepe said. “Is that truly how you want a committee to run? It’s adversarial, and it’s not good for me, you or the community.”
The article was amended to see if the town will continue the budget committee, instead of abolishing it, before being moved to the warrant.

In other business, voters sent the town’s proposed 2015-16 operating budget to the warrant after adding $26,000 at the selectmen’s request. The proposed budget is now $3,410,489, an increase of $111,872, or about 3.4 percent, from the 2014-15 operating budget of $3,298,617 that voters approved last year.
As an official-ballot town, Winchester residents are allowed to discuss and amend town meeting warrant articles during the deliberative session. Residents vote by ballot on the warrant articles March 10.


Meghan Foley can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1436, or mfoley@keenesentinel.com. Follow her on Twitter @MFoleyKS.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Reasons to oppose pipeline, by Susan Wessels

Like many effective propaganda campaigns, the Kinder Morgan effort to “sell” its behemoth pipeline project planned for southern New Hampshire relies on lies that are repeated often enough to persuade people they must be true.
Lie 1: The pipeline will be “co-located” with the existing PSNH power easement. The implication is that the pipeline will not require the taking of much private land, since PSNH owns the high transmission lines rights-of-way. The pipeline would be built not in the current right-of-way, but ALONGSIDE it. It will require at least 100 feet of additional land to be taken, all along its path, from private owners, conservation easements, towns and other public lands. It will leave a permanent scar across the state on which no vegetation will be allowed to grow.

Lie 2: The pipeline will bring natural gas to people’s homes. Unless you already have the underground infrastructure in place in your neighborhood, no gas will be available for your home.

Lie 3: Kinder Morgan, will help us reduce property taxes by paying the town millions of dollars. They are paying about $1 million total to all towns in a current 50-mile pipeline zone. They have promised local towns about $11 million more for about 70 miles of new pipe. After the first year, when depreciation formulas kick in, towns will be lucky to get one-tenth of what they’ve been promised.

Lie 4: We need this pipeline to bring more natural gas to New Hampshire so we have sufficient energy during our coldest winter days. There are other ways — less costly, intrusive and dangerous ways — to beef up our supply of energy:

1. The supply of liquid natural gas is becoming more abundant and available to New England through import and transport from within the U.S.
2. Another gas pipeline being built right now will bring natural gas to New England by 2017.
3. Oil prices have crashed, forcing other fossil fuel prices to drop as well.
4. New Hampshire ratepayers made a huge financial investment in a scrubber for our coal-burning plant. This investment is sitting there, about to go down the drain, when it could be used to buy time as we continue our stated drive for non-fossil fuels. We could take any number of steps that would avoid the harrowing risks and dislocations this pipeline brings while leaving the state in a more flexible position to take advantage of the volatility in the energy markets.
The Kinder Morgan pipeline is huge. It will pipe so much more gas than we need in New Hampshire, and bring with it so many potential hazards. Most of this gas would be destined for high-profit export. High prices abroad may drive up the cost of natural gas at home, as we find ourselves competing with foreign countries for the gas we are taking all the risks to transport.

Lie 5: Pipelines are safe. Last week alone there were five explosions of pipelines in the U.S. People were killed. Check Kinder Morgan’s safety record online.
Then tell me how safe these pipelines are.

Susan Wessels
182 Sunridge Road
Rindge

Residents sound off, say they're skeptical of pipeline

WINCHESTER — Winchester’s Town Hall was transformed into pipeline headquarters Wednesday.
The hall was filled with poster boards, pamphlets and more than a dozen people wearing bright blue polo shirts with the insignia of Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co., a subsidiary of energy company Kinder Morgan that wants to build a natural gas pipeline through much of southern New Hampshire and Massachusetts.
The posters were printed with information that has become familiar to those following Kinder Morgan’s efforts to connect what comes out of the Pennsylvania shale gas fields through upstate New York, northern Massachusetts towns and more than a dozen New Hampshire towns including Fitzwilliam, Richmond, Rindge, Troy and Winchester.
Kinder Morgan says the 36-inch pipeline, which will cross hundreds of miles, will alleviate energy shortages and winter gas price spikes in New England.
Company representatives say the pipeline will follow the path of existing power lines that already run through the southern part of the Granite State, and that the company will do its best to affect as few New Hampshire residents as possible.
But in addition to the posters and blue shirts, Winchester Town Hall was also filled with more than 100 local residents, many of whom remain skeptical of the company’s assurances.
Cheryl Barlow of Harrisville stood outside Town Hall wearing a heavy jacket and holding an anti-pipeline sign.
Behind her, representatives from the New England chapter of the Laborer’s International Union of North America had set up a large sign with bright lights blaring messages of support for the pipeline and the jobs it would create.
Barlow said she had gone inside briefly to look at Kinder Morgan’s materials and came back out to protest.
“It’s just not the right fit for New Hampshire,” Barlow said.
She said she isn’t convinced by Kinder Morgan’s representatives that the project won’t have extreme environmental impacts on Winchester and the Connecticut River Valley.
“I just felt that I was being given half-truths,” Barlow said. “They just kept answering me in a roundabout way.”
Allen Fore, Kinder Morgan’s vice president for public affairs, answered questions from residents and the media at Wednesday’s open house.
He said misinformation about the federal regulatory process and Kinder Morgan’s safety record has circulated among people opposed to the pipeline.
The need, he said, is there.
“The possibility of gas service (to towns like Winchester) is real,” he said.
Liberty Utilities, the largest natural gas distributor in New Hampshire, has signed an agreement to purchase gas from the pipeline to heat New Hampshire homes.
Liberty has not proposed building any offshoots of the pipelines to municipalities not directly on the route, but it could, Fore said.
Liberty, and Kinder Morgan’s other customers, would not sign contracts to buy the gas if they didn’t think the demand was there, he said.
Fore encouraged people who have concerns about the pipeline to engage in the public meetings the company will hold over the next several months and contribute to the open comment period that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission will continue to host in additional meetings and online.
The federal commission must approve the project before it can go forward.
Rosemary Wessel, a Cummington, Mass., resident who has been active in the anti-pipeline effort for more than a year, said she would continue to try to shut it down.
“Hopefully (federal regulators) will cancel it because there’s enough resistance, and it slows the process down.”
The corporation’s original proposed route would have crossed upstate New York and more than 40 northern Massachusetts towns.
Last month, in the face of opposition from Bay State residents and the promise of a route that aligned with existing utility lines, Kinder Morgan moved the proposed line north through 18 communities in southern New Hampshire.
Wessel said Kinder Morgan’s decision to change the pipeline’s route indicated it could possibility be swayed by public opposition.
“They knew that there is pressure, and they reacted,” she said.
Over the past two months, residents in local communities have joined Massachusetts opponents of the project, saying the pipeline will affect property values and cause environmental damage.
So far, Rindge and Winchester residents have put petition warrant articles on their town warrants, including one to not let Kinder Morgan representatives or surveyors on town land.
Other petition warrant articles, if passed, would allow Rindge and Winchester to oppose the N.H. Energy Site Evaluation Committee if it approves the pipeline.
The Site Evaluation Committee has not yet received communication from Kinder Morgan about the pipeline, according to committee administrator Timothy Drew.
The reasons for the town to oppose the project have to do with property rights and protecting the town’s drinking water, according to the warrant article.
But even if the towns vote to approve these petition warrant articles, it doesn’t effectively bar the project from going forward; it simply means the Site Evaluation Committee has to listen to the towns, Drew said. If the towns oppose the pipeline, the Site Evaluation Committee is not obligated to also oppose the project.
Drew said the state process for evaluating the project must take into account the concerns of individual towns, as well as state departments such as N.H. Fish and Game and the Department of Environmental Services.
Ultimately though, the federal government has the final decision because the pipeline crosses state lines.
“The proceedings of the (Site Evaluation Committee) would be incorporated into the federal process, too,” Drew said.
He said he’s been contacted by concerned citizens about the pipeline. He encourages people to get involved and stay involved.
“A lot of them are worried about getting run over,” Drew said. “Their voices will be heard in one way or another. I tell them not to fear, but be a participant.”

Martha Shanahan can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1434, or mshanahan@keenesentinel.com. Follow her on Twitter @ MShanahanKS.

Racetracks, future of Budget Committee in Winchester


"Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely"






WINCHESTER — Petition articles to regulate racetracks, an operating budget of more than $3 million and an article seeking to dissolve the town budget committee will top this year’s warrant at the deliberative session Saturday.
Resident Robert E. Davis, spokesman for the Winchester Noise Coalition, said Wednesday he submitted the two warrant articles to regulate racetracks because he and his fellow coalition members are at their wits’ end.

“This is our attempt to put in some bylaws under the state law just to give some relief from the noise of the racetracks,” he said.
The racetracks he is referring to are Monadnock Speedway, Winchester Motorsports and Winchester Speedpark.
He said some people who have joined the coalition say the noise has gotten so bad that their children can’t sleep at night when the tracks are hosting events.
The coalition, which was founded in 2007, has 131 members — all of whom live in Winchester — he said. Members have gone to selectmen in hopes of addressing the problem through further regulation, but with no success, he said.
The group did get the town to pass a noise ordinance in 2008, ( Selectmen made the tracks exempt, saying they were 'grandfathered in" ) but more needs to be done, he said.
One warrant article asks voters to require selectmen to adopt bylaws for the regulation of racetracks that address hours and days of operation; limiting the number of race practice days to one four-hour slot per week; limiting the number of event days per year; and developing permit requirements for operators of the tracks.
A second warrant article seeks voter approval to activate temporary racetrack regulations that would be valid until the next annual town meeting.
Those regulations would restrict racetrack hours to between 9 a.m. and 10 p.m., and restrict races, practices or any other motor vehicle competition or event to between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m., except on Sundays, when there would be no activity on the track.
Racetrack owners would also be required to install sound-engineered noise barriers and ensure every participating vehicle has a muffler that meets or exceeds the manufacturer’s specifications to reduce exhaust and engine noise, according to the warrant article.
“We aren’t out to put the racetracks out of business, we just want to make them better neighbors,” Davis said.
Other articles
Selectmen have recommended a warrant article to abolish the town’s budget committee.

Selectmen Chairman Roberta A. Fraser said Tuesday that if the warrant article passes at town meeting in March, it would put the budget process back under the control of the selectmen.

Because power corrupts, society's demands for moral authority and character increase as the importance of the position increases.

John Adams
“It’s not that we don’t think the budget committee is a good idea. We think it just needs to be re-looked at,” she said. “Somehow, the board and the budget committee need to get on the same page.”
This year, the budget committee has proposed an operating budget of $3,384,489 for 2015-16, which is $43,478 less than the selectmen’s recommended budget of $3,427,967.
The budget committee’s proposal is an increase of $85,872, or 2.6 percent, from the 2014-15 operating budget of $3,298,617 that voters approved last year.
As an official-ballot town, Winchester residents are allowed to discuss and amend town meeting warrant articles during the deliberative session. The meeting will then be adjourned until Tuesday, March 10, when residents vote by ballot on the warrant articles.


The deliberative session will be held Saturday at 9 a.m. at Winchester Town Hall.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Truck falls into water after Winchester road collapses

By Martha Shanahan Sentinel Staff

WINCHESTER — Part of a Winchester road collapsed Thursday, sending a septic truck into the brook below.

The driver escaped before the truck fell.

Andrew Lightfoot of Swanzey was driving a Septic Manager company truck east on Old Chesterfield Road when he was directed to drive around a crew doing construction work on the road, he said.

The town's highway department was working on removing a culvert at the time, Town Administrator Shelly Walker said.

"It needed to be replaced because it was an old culvert that ... they tried to unclog, and that wasn't going to happen so it needed to replaced," she said.

Lightfoot attempted to drive around the crew when the road started collapsing and his truck slid into the guardrail, he said.

He was able to get out of the vehicle before the road totally collapsed, sending the truck into the brook below.

A video of the incident from Septic Manager co-owner Ed Csenge of Sullivan shows the truck, a Dodge Ram, falling suddenly through the crumbling street.

"The road washed away right under him," Septic Manager co-owner Laurel Csenge said.

"Fortunately it was a big enough truck to span (the gap) so he could get out," she said. "If you had a little car it would have eaten him right up."

Lightfoot was on his way back from servicing the portable toilets at Pisgah State Park, but no effluence leaked out of the truck.

Workers from Porter's Diesel Service Inc. in Winchester helped make a platform to remove the truck from the brook, Laurel Csenge said.

The truck was not as badly damaged as Csenge expected, she said, but the engine may have sustained water damage.

Matthew Donachie, a resident of Old Winchester Road, said he has seen the highway department doing work on the culvert for several weeks after water had built up and blocked it this fall.

Donachie said he had noticed an irregularity in the road when he drove over the culvert Wednesday.

"The road dipped where it shouldn't dip," he said.

Town officials had not advised residents against driving over that part of the road, Donachie said.

Winchester Highway Superintendent Dale Gray could not be reached for comment today.

Old Chesterfield Road remained closed to through traffic this morning.

Martha Shanahan can be reached at 352-1234, extension 1434, or mshanahan@keenesentinel.com. Follow her on Twitter @MShanahanKS.

hmmmm , more performance bonuses ??


Thursday, October 16, 2014

Does This Sound Oh So Familar In Out Town ?

A breech of public trust - Brattleboro Reformer

By RICHARD DAVIS

When an elected public official acts in a manner that is not only behaviorally inappropriate but also ethically unacceptable, a sacred public trust has been violated.
We elect people who we hope will reflect what is best in us. That means that they should be held to the highest ethical standards and that they should behave in a respectful manner. Their election by their peers implies that they understand that their actions will be under more scrutiny than the people who elected them.
Recent events in Vernon have put a blemish on the integrity of small town politics everywhere. The chairwoman of the Vernon Selectboard not only allegedly tried to intervene in the outcome of a police action, but also acted in a demeaning manner to the officers involved.
If this was an isolated incident of an abuse of power and an isolated act of arrogance by a public official we should still be outraged.
At the very least, this elected public official needs to make a public apology to all the parties involved.I believe she then needs to resign. I would go so far as to suggest that this official make a good faith effort at making sure this kind of thing is never done again by her.
The current behavioral indiscretion by the Vernon Selectboard chairwoman appears to be a case of bullying by an adult. If that proves to be true, then we have an instance where the behavior of a public official is undermining the efforts of school officials who have been working hard for a number of years to send a message that bullying is not acceptable behavior.
Adult bullying by a publicly elected official is a mean-spirited type of politics that should have no place in Vermont. If we disagree with each other we should be civil enough to be able to speak to each other frankly and to freely express our differences of opinion. In the case of this official, it has been my experience that differences of opinion are not well tolerated and even considered an affront to her way of life.
This current incident between the police and a public official in Vernon is only the most recent in a long line of controversial events in this little town. One has to wonder if there is some sort of toxic force at work that is causing too many public proceedings to be contentious more often than they need to be. There was a time when dealing with people and issues in Vernon was not so contentious and when anger and arrogance were not in the air. I hope for the days when a political candidate from Guilford can canvass door to door in Vernon and not have to worry about being treated as a hostile interloper.
The hope for those days begins by removing any bad apples from the barrel. If laws have been broken, public officials need to pay the price. The public trust has been violated and this Vernon official needs to step back from public life, whether as an elected official or a member of any institutional board, and reflect on her actions and try to make herself a better person.

Richard Davis is a registered nurse and long-time health care advocate. He writes from Guilford and welcomes comments at rbdav@comcast.net.


One could easily make the connection to a certain town official who on numerous occasions has used her position(s) and personal feelings to influence outcomes of board decisions in this town many times. One has to ask themselves why would someone act in such a way time and time again? A bigger question is why the Selectboard of Winchester allows this type of behavior and does nothing to uphold the public trust?