Last night, I was able to put my iPhone to good use during the Selectmen’s meeting. I had to leave my son’s Little League playoff game early to attend, but my friend Beth helpfully texted me the scores (tied 6-6 in the sixth! And YES! They won in overtime!). And when Town Administrator Tim McInerney named his DPW pick and mentioned he used to work with him in Seekonk, I plugged in “james tusino seekonk mcinerney” and came up with this, which allowed me to ask Tim after the meeting about Tusino losing his job in Seekonk and filing suit against the town.
But really, the meeting for me was a series of head-desk moments. I’m a child of politics, as I’ve mentioned over and over, and I actually personally like Tim. So I just have to say it: Dude, why are you suddenly politically tone-deaf?
We have pay as you throw starting just two weeks from today and there are no bags in stores yet? We haven’t locked down Stop & Shop? We’re not selling the bags at the Municipal Center? Are you kidding me? PAYT is NOT popular and the best way to make it at least accepted by a wide segment of the population is to make it as easy as possible.
And on top of that, Tim’s appointing a guy he’s previously worked with, who has filed suit against a previous town employer for wrongful termination, to take over the DPW spot? I’m sure Tusino is a great guy and he may have, in fact, been pushed out by a Board of Selectmen with a grudge. But do you really want to start out as a Town Administrator by bringing in old friends?
I just sat there, alone at the media table (where was everyone last night? No T&G, no GraftonNews?), just picturing the string of comments that would end up following the stories I would inevitably write about the night. Granted, the Town Administrator has to be the one to make the unpopular decisions and, given Toma’s inglorious departure (yeah, anyone want to go on the record about that one? Bueller?), he may feel more comfortable putting someone with whom he has a history in there to get a good look at the department. God, did they have to be at the same meeting? Couldn’t this have been done when we were all distracted by the parade of minor-selling liquor stores? (“Sorry.” “Sorry.” “Hey, let’s hire a new acting DPW director.” “Great!” “Sorry.” “Sorry.” “I’ll never sell to a minor again.”)
But the average person isn’t looking at that. They’re pissed off that they have to pay extra for trash bags and, oh great, the guy they see as responsible for that (PAYT was in the works pre-Tim!) now wants to hire an old buddy instead of a guy from Grafton.
And the comments section spirals out of control!