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Friday, October 26, 2007

West Hartford Town Clerk Race

I posted this link : on West Hartford Blog this morning from the West Hartford News which I thought was a fair and balanced look at the two candidates running for Town Clerk.

Theresa McGrath has clearly been an advocate for families and children since she arrived here from New York, and she courageously led the battle against the huge tax increase that the Democrats proposed last year, and pretty much helped tip the scale in favor of working families in West Hartford. Since the tax issue has been so contenuous, its put her in the awkward position of being targeted and facing unprecedented verbal assault by pro-tax advocates in a highly uncivilized manner.

The very fact that she is willing to serve the town in any capacity after such tiring and painful experience clearly shows her high level of commitment for residents of West Hartford; it obvious that she cares tremendously for this town, and is willing to take on responsibilities in a non-partisan position.

I only met her once (the story is below in a previous entry). She was very pleasant and remarkably bright. From everything that I've seen of her, I think she'd carry out the role of Town Clerk in a very neutral style, meaning should wouldn't let politics enter into the Clerk's Office.

I'm not saying that Essie would either. I haven't heard much from her in this campaign, I only know that she is a well connected Democratic operative who has been a delegate to the Democratic National Committee - and those aren't slots that they hand out casually to just anyone - these spots go to liberal political activists. I guess I have a concern for why a Democratic operative would be so interested in securing the Town Clerk's position, if not for any other reason than to pull some strings and turn the Clerk's office into the Democrats new base of operations.

Theresa's ideas about facilitating open government, and providing minutes to meetings online seems like a no-brainer to most people since many towns provide minutes to residents so that they can follow actions taken by their officials. Since Essie hasn't commented on this one way or another so I'm going to have to believe she's against the concept. In a large town like West Hartford, there needs to be commitment from our public officials to make policy decisions available to the public.

Lately, it seems that many decisions are being made in a vacuum or in back rooms away from public scrutiny. The only people that fear public knowledge of their proceedings, are those that realize that the decisions they are making might not be in the best interest of the public. This kind of underhanded handling of the town government smells rotten of deceit and dishonesty.

Let's choose open Government, let's choose Theresa McGrath.


Judy Aron said...

You forgot to mention - Theresa is willing to take a substantial pay cut for a position that pays $79,000+! Maybe Norma Cronin deserves that much in pay after 20 years on the job - but a newcomer shouldn't be so grossly compensated. Theresa has vowed to take a pay cut.. Essie hasn't.

Anonymous said...

How much of a paycut is Theresa willing to take? Is there a dollar figure?

Is this real or a political stunt?

Elliot Check said...

Isn't Anonymous the one to accuse someone of a political stunt after his false accusations on Kelly Clark!

The King said...

Hi Elliot:

I would agree with you if anonymous is the same anonymous...

But I am curious as well about the salary amount, so if Theresa said "X" amount, that would be worth putting out there to see if Essie would be willing to take the same cut. I guess my point is that Theresa would have a stronger message if she were willing to say what exact amount she would be willing to take, so either Essie would match it or beat it... in either case the voters would win.

You probably talk with her once in a while, it might be worth asking.

Anonymous said...

“I myself am not able to afford to live in this town,” [Theresa] McGrath said. She said her agenda was to cut taxes. “I don’t want to move. I’m going to have to move,” she said.

Meanwhile, she sends 2 children to private schools... maybe if she lived within her means she could afford WH.

Says she's "non-partisan"? Oh really... well what about the Yankee Institute? And working for the blond bombshell for State Senate? You know, the candidate that actually fired Theresa because, well, she's a head case.

McGrath is a documented lier. She will say, do, promise anything to get what she wants.

She has said "I'm running because I didn't want the position to go unopposed". Well ain't that a great reason to vote for her?

And by the way Judy, the position doesn't pay $79K. Another fabrication by the supposed non-partisan Taxpayers Association.

You reap what you sow... and McGrath will be sewing another taxpayer referendum next year.

Judy Aron said...

Looks to me like anonymous is the documented liar here. Show us some proof here of your claim that the town clerk doesn't make $79 K. Where is the link, or the page in the budget book? Try page 2 - $282,000+ for 4.5 employees - we know the rest - Theresa has spoken to the Town Clerk.

As for Theresa's kids going to private schools - they get scholarships. You pompous creep - how dare you make such accusations about her financial affairs when you don't know a thing about them! And who the heck are you to pass such judgments?

The candidate for state senate didn't fire Theresa, so you do not know what the heck you are talking about on that account either. Yet another lie you'd like to spread.

Gee, looks like the Dems are the ones saying and doing anything to get re-elected. They are promising to lower spending and make leisure services self-sustaining, etc. Well, why haven't they done it?
Why weren't they committed to significantly lowering taxes in the past two years??? Because they have no real interest to. It took referendums to MAKE them do it. And even so - they did a poor job. Taxes still went up and they'd just as soon blame it on the revaluation which was done in such a piss poor way - with no visual assessments - such that our properties are way over valued, and thus we are still overtaxed.

You Dems blame the tax burden on the state - on the reval - on the union contracts - on everything else but on yourselves for being unwilling to make appropriate cuts in your spending. You are too damn afraid to do what has to be done. You time has run out. The state is not going to save your asses the next time either, especially with Dems in the CGA who think that every other town like Hartford and Bridgeport deserve more of the pie, so we get less.

The Dems have no real interest in keeping the tax burden in check anyway. They haven't the whole time they have been in control. They just want to spend, and the proof of that is the ridiculous pay raises they just conceded in doling out. They'd rather cut school programs in favor of pay raises for administrators! They also lied about Blue Back lowering our tax burden. $33,714,187 phased-in net assessment growth for Blue Back development was not included as General Fund revenue and hence did not lower the mill rate at all. It won't matter how much Blue Back makes anyway - that money will already be spent as the budget spirals higher.

These incumbents have no concept of prioritizing spending nor do they care if old people are tossed out of their homes. The proof is in the reality of what is happening in town. We are losing our senior citizens at a much higher rate then the surrounding towns. All one has to do is look at the referendum numbers to see how the budget affected folks. I will tell you - they are not pleased. And you know what else? Our school system in comparison with other towns is not so much better anymore. Farmington, Simsbury and everyone else in our ERG outshines us. Oh, but now you are saying we don't belong in that comparison group anymore - how convenient. Now you want to place us with the dregs, so we look better - despite the fact that people when shopping for homes will compare us to Farmington or Simsbury or Canton or Avon.

The Dems lied about the mini-golf too - that is still in the CIP - with money earmarked for it. No, they haven't spent anything yet - but they plan to. Just like they plan to make the mayor's job one that receives a salary, with all the whining we are hearing from Scotty about all the time he spends answering his own phone messages. If any of them find the job so burdensome, then they shouldn't run.

Anonymous doesn't even have the honesty or integrity to use his real name here.
What a coward. Typical liberal.
So what other lies will you tell, you coward? Why don't you go back to the West Hartford Blog and spew your disingenuous garbage over there?

The King said...

Is there a way to contact Dr. Elliot Check without making a dental appointment?

Elliot Check said...

Hi King,

I'm in the west hartford directory.
BTW, did we meet last night?

The King said...

Hi Elliot. Sorry to take so long to get back to you... yes, we did meet and we chatted about lots of topics as I recall - from travel to rainbow something or other.

I apologize for coming as Clark Kent, but I recognize that not everyone (not meaning you) can handle the whole blog thing. I can understand this as many folks cannot read inflection and humor in my writings in the same way that I mean to portray.

Thanks for running. It would be a huge loss if you don't stay active and pick it up again. Whether you love me or hate me, I'd vote for you in a heartbeat again.

I had hoped that you would seek a leadership role in the New WH GOP that I pray gets formed. You will bring a lot of credibility to the team. No smoke intended. I hope you bounce back quick, more determined than ever. The party needs people like you.

Best of luck in whatever you decide to do. And stay in touch and keep commenting. You are a breath of fresh air.