Actions Not Words

Guest Post by Michael Chambers
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I have spent some time recently going over the events of the past two years. I wanted to get the full picture of what the Charlestown Democratic Town Committee (CDTC) has offered on behalf of the entire town, the business community, and the public servants. Because the CDTC tries to distance itself from the actions of its own members, I am restricted to identifying the Homestead Tax Exemption as the only written proposal endorsed by that group. Two years and only one proposal is not a praiseworthy accomplishment.

I was going to take a closer look at that proposal but others have commented on how lackluster and dangerous that proposal is to the people of Charlestown. So rather than repeat each and every comment, I will summarize what I have read. The tax exemption is divisive. It is meant to help the residents who can’t pay their property taxes by taking the money from out-of-town property owners. There are less than fifty household in this town that are having trouble paying their taxes and until the State passes a law that excuses the poor from paying their property taxes, the town will continue to work with them. By the way, as long as the poor are meant to get the largesse of picking the pockets of out-of-state property owners, let’s give everyone of the full time residents a share in the booty, oh, but not people considered rich. The exemption as written is bad for local business and tradesmen. That is evident, but the union-run CDTC keeps trying to let local business know that they are their friends. I don’t need friends like that!!

Now the college kids who rent the house of the out-of-state property owners can expect to see increased rents because the cost as most businessmen know, gets passed on to the consumer. The college renters may have to look elsewhere or add more students to the property. Not a good deal. Besides, the CDTC doesn’t care about students, they can’t vote in the Charlestown elections just like their landlords. This is my assessment of the Homestead Tax Exemption, the only proposal the CDTC has brought to the table. Not good enough if you expect the voters to turn a blind eye and a deaf ear to your rhetoric.

What has the CDTC done on behalf of the public servants? I came up empty on this one. Did they participate in the contract negotiations through their supported councilors? Did they help, through their supported councilors, update the employee handbook? Did they add more work to the normal daily routine of the clerk’s office? Did they offer to help Bill DiLibero, through their supported councilors? What did they do on behalf of the employees of Charlestown?

Other than this, the CDTC has accused the town council of several shortcomings without specifying what constitutes those shortcomings. So I won’t guess what they are getting at because, since the issues are not fully explained in writing and carry the imprimatur of Catherine O’Reilly Collette, they can and will probably be denied.