According to a post on Facebook by Portsmouth Town Councilor Keith Hamilton, meetings will now be available online at PortsmouthRecord.com. W00t!
After my post this morning about flooding in Island Park, I received three communications from the Portsmouth Town Council. Keith Hamilton called me at home, expressed concern about the situation, and said that he had already called RI DOT to file a complaint and try to get some action.
Update: Councilor Mike Buddemeyer emailed to let me know he called a contact at RIDOT and sent him the the pictures so he could see the situation first-hand.
Update 2: Councilor Jim Seveney sent an e-mail after work saying that he was continuing to follow events. I didn't ask him to do anything, because by that point, I'd already received the note from Dolce saying that the bus location would be moved. But I appreciate — and suggest that my Island Park parents and neighbors remember — that we got support from Hamilton, Buddemeyer, and Seveney.
Paul "Transparancy" Kesson, on the other hand, replied by e-mail, attached below; my response to him follows.
Cc: Town Council
Subject: Re: Island Park flooding and school bus safety
Date: Thu, 08 Sep 2011 10:07:11 -0400
Thanks for your quick response and your suggestion; I have filed a complaint with RIDOT. Do I correctly infer from your e-mail that you expect citizens to deal with RIDOT without your assistance?
This seems out of character, given the Council's active role in other issues in Island Park where you have repeatedly stepped in between citizens and state agencies.
I must say that this response leaves me very dissatisfied.
Councilor Keith Hamilton, on the other hand, just phoned me to let me know that he had personally called RIDOT to file a complaint and try to get some action.
I'll let my neighbors in Island Park decide which of these responses they find more helpful.
On Thu, 2011-09-08 at 13:27 +0000, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
> This has been a problem at the area near the clamshack for over a year and
> I went to the RIDOT website and made a formal complaint. I also noticed RIDOT
> had their loader on the beach and dug out the Strom drains earlier this week.
> In the period after my contact RIDOT cleaned the manholes last spring there
> and at Sprague Street and. East Main Road.
> I would suggest you got to the RIDOT website under customer service and contact
> them again as another formal complaint.
> There was a formal complaint filed last week for the area at Dexter and East
> Main as all the water is going down I believe is Potomac and flooding yard
> and basements during a normal 3 day rain.
Three-term Portsmouth Town Councilor Dennis Canario sent this press release following his defeat in yesterday's election:
I would like to take this time to thank everyone for giving me the honor of serving as your councilman over the past 6 years. As I stated during my campaign, I realize and truly appreciate all the hard work and effort each and every town employee give of themselves on a daily basis.
Portsmouth certainly faces some challenges ahead such as future budgets and the implementation of the waste water management district. The future budgets are going to require a great deal of commitment in order to preserve education, health and welfare and vital services. The implementation of the WWMD will also be challenging in terms of satisfying our obligations under state law while providing an affordable solution to all town residents.
I would like to thank my family especially my wife Amy, my children, Dennis jr., Jonathan, Olivia, daughter in law Tori, and all my friends who supported my efforts as your town councilor. Although I wish the outcome would have been in my favor, the voters have spoken. We must now move forward as a community and work together to keep Portsmouth the most precious place on earth to live.
Thank you once again for giving me the honor.
Dennis M Canario
Full disclosure: I've known Dennis since I started covering the Council four years ago, and got to know him much better running with him this year. He is an absolutely straight-up guy, with a ton of common sense, who did his best every minute of his time on the Council, and we will miss his calm, rational voice. Dennis, thank you for your service to the town. All the best to you, Amy, and your wonderful family.
Portstmouth Town Council candidate Len Katzman has a zinger of a letter to the editor up on Portsmouth Patch where he takes the Portsmouth Concerned Citizens (PCC) to task for their highly selective use of decontextualized "information."
If you're headed out to the Council meeting tonight, where the School Committee will be asking to use their fund balance in a desperate effort to preserve programs for this year, you might want to read Katzman's letter as a warm-up. Because I can virtually guarantee that the PCC is going to get up and tell the Council such action would be illegal.
After they spent what had to be at least a thousand dollars (and a bag of rocks) convincing Portsmouth residents not to vote for the referendum because those funds existed.