Sunday Notes June 14th 2015

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“I don’t know for sure but I would like to think he puts the city’s interests before those of the union,” said Belanger. – Lowell Sun Column Blog.

Should Councilor Belanger even be voting to approve members of the License Commission who oversee his establishment? – The Lowell Curmudgeon

What does Belanger gain by taking a jab at Rourke?

State Rep. Tom Golden is very supportive of his cousin City Councilor Dan Rourke. He is also much more supportive of City Manager Murphy than he was of the last Manager. So why is Murphy’s biggest Council supporter shooting off his mouth and taking a shot at fellow Councilor Rourke? Is Belanger just being Murphy’s protector? Is there a possibility Belanger thinks he doesn’t need the Golden/ Rourke support to get re-elected since he has the Gov./ Lt Gov? Could he be doing the bidding of Mayor Elliott who wants a second term but supposedly hasn’t got a commitment from Rourke?

These are some of the questions floating out in the political bubble.

FYI: How much does it cost to “rent” or get a permit to use Fort Hill Park to host a Political Fundraiser? Does it require a Police detail? While it is “legal” it just leaves the appearance of conflict of interest but that has never seemed to bother Councilor Belanger who will be hosting his fundraiser there next Saturday from 1:00 – 4:00 kids and Seniors over 65 are free otherwise cost is $10 per person. Can Alcohol be served?

REORG

Unions now saying maybe Lynch wasn’t so bad!

The City Unions were talked into supporting those Councilors who wanted to dump former Manager Lynch being told that the “next” Manager would “take care” of the Unions.

The firefighters feel they have been whacked by this administration over staffing and overtime. The Manager’s shots against retiring Chief Skip Pitta over labor issues and overtime have been noted. It was also noticed and described as being disrespectful that neither City Manager Murphy nor Mayor Elliott attended the retiring Fire Chiefs function Thursday night to represent the City. This just days after the Council supported the Manager’s decision to remove the Chiefs position from Civil Service.

Local 1705 is up for a new contract and may still be fighting with the administration over overtime issues. The teacher’s union is unhappy with the pace and offer for a new contract.

Many rank and file members are unhappy with this Manager and his constant creation of high level jobs. He created a 3rd Asst. City Manager position, a new department of Health and Human Services that gets a Director and a HHS Deputy Director for Administration and a new assistant director for administration and finance in the DPW. All with the seemingly full support of this current City Council.

While creating the New HHS, the Murphy Administration has taken away the Recreation Dept. from the DPW Parks, Recreation and Cemetery’s Commissioner Tom Bellgarde along with the $710,997 budget and personal. So he has less responsibilities but loses nothing in pay?

I’m hearing that multiple city Unions are getting tired of being told there is no money for raises and seeing High End jobs created with full Council support while responsibilities reduced for some existing management and they are told SORRY NOTHING for you! They are starting to think they would have been better off with Lynch staying on as Manager after all.

The Firefighters and teachers are NOT the only upset groups, those citizens who want the right to carry a concealed weapon but because they don’t live in Dracut or Tewksbury can’t are looking for challengers to support.

If anyone of the existing challengers started pointing out how poorly the Unions are being treated along with the Hamilton Canal FIASCO (where it was claimed Trinity did nothing) but now we have the Administrations lead Cheerleader(Councilor Belanger )and Manager Murphy this week trying to shift blame to the LRTA or National Park maybe we could have a real Council Race! Unfortunately most Council candidates have been nonexistent on any real ISSUES!

It’s harder now???

In case you missed the “discussion ” on the Hamilton Canal Issue at the city Council meeting this past week, Councilor Belanger asked for an update on the land swap with the National Park and the possible use of the LRTA bus facility. He points to these as two obstacles to moving forward on the Hamilton Canal development. The Manager says Belanger is 100% right. It’s been very frustrating.

Raise your hand if anyone heard Councilor Belanger or Manager Murphy stating this when Trinity Financial was the developer? Hello..anyone…anyone..? Why is it harder now and not when Belanger was grandstanding and calling out Trinity??? DUH! Why do you think they were having issues??

Payback for your support or anyone who doesn’t want a contract?

Many parents/Lang supporters are wondering if the real reason Mayor Elliot voted for Dr.Khelfaoui was to payback Dave Conway for being such a loyal supporter. Conway the retired LHS Submaster took on the role of Mayor’s Aide, answering the phone etc. in the Mayor’s Office when Elliott first took over between the time Jen Myers departed and Ms. Gettings started. Conway has been loyal and supported Elliott on the School Committee so maybe the Anyone but Lang Leader received a little support back from the Mayor?

Many can’t believe the only reason the Mayor voted for Dr.Khelfaoui is because he didn’t want a contract. While that may be one of the reasons others smell political payback to Conway has the main reason.

The big danger the Mayor now faces before the election is that the former Lowell City Manager is now the administrator for the Town Dr. K comes from and can let people know if has many people in Lowell fear, Dr. K was one of the main contributors to the fiscal issue the town of Winchendon faces and make the Mayor’s hand-picked School Superintendent look inept and the Mayor look foolish for being his chief supporter.

Now really would Bernie Lynch do that to Rodney???

Lynch lending support to Dracut

While Lowell is fortunate to have Bob Healy in the fold, the financial sub-committee that consist of Dracut Selectman, Dracut School Committee members the Town Managers and others have recruited Bernie Lynch to assist / advise them has they review the current and projected finances of the town. Lynch who is currently the part time Winchendon Administrator helped straighten and strengthen Lowell’s finances and provides a strong fiscal and public administrative background.

So why supposedly is at least one Selectman/Selectperson “concerned” or unhappy about it? Maybe because they weren’t asked to be on that Committee?

Bruised Feeling?….Taking my ball and going home?

Rumors are circulating that the public disclosure of the infighting and negative comments directed at each other among the School a Committee is making a couple members rethink whether they want another term. Again showing its about them not the kids.

HAPPY FLAG DAY! and Happy Birthday to my sister Lisa!

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