Sunday, June 26, 2011

Make It Trifecta Tuesday

Kenneth M. O’Brien

Vote Tuesday, June 28, 2011
8 AM to 8PM
If you need a ride to the polls, call

Fontaine, Lazo, Logan.

Those are the names to vote for in Tuesday’s Southbridge election for town council.

The reasons are crystal clear.

For over ten years two groups have dominated the Southbridge town council. The first time they called themselves the “Restore Confidence Group”. These days they call themselves the “Future Of Southbridge”.

The first group, for reasons of a “political agenda” met in a basement to conspire to remove the town manager and thereby scuttled a letter of intent that would have put a theater in Southbridge.

The second group has worked hand in glove with the local landfill operator to run roughshod over the town charter while blindly supporting the intervening town managers and the interim town managers to further the interests of that trash behemoth in making Southbridge home to the largest trash dump in Massachusetts.

Both groups were composed of essentially the same cast of characters. (Excluding the leader of the first group who has moved to Sturbridge).

As a result, Southbridge property values have declined faster than surrounding towns:

Tax rates are the highest of any local community to support a bloated town bureaucracy:

Unemployment has outstripped the averages for the rest of Worcester County:

The pipe dream of an industrial park has steadily disappointed:

They have not hesitated to use official town resources to pursue personal vendettas and political agendas:

And both groups have engaged in tactics that would have embarrassed Donald Segretti:

The Clark/Casella cronies of the current majority on the town council keep shouting about political agendas. Their political agenda could not be clearer. They want to preserve their privileged position while driving Southbridge residents into virtual indentured servitude.
They keep shouting about expertise when the only expertise that has been shown by the town managers they have allied with is the expertise to line their own pockets while driving the town and its residents deeper into debt and financial ruin.

My biggest gripe with the current minority and crop of candidates I support is their timidity in confronting these schoolyard bullies while the FOS clan has no problem calling their constituents “thieves”. “pigs”, “barnyard animals” and “inbred”.

I wish that those that I support would grow a set and stand up for what they claim to believe in.

But, in the final analysis, they present a far better option than the misfeasant cabal that constitutes the alternative.


  1. Well, said, Ken, warts and all.

  2. Ken
    Why does everthing center around casella or FOS. If you really look at yourself and the group that you support its the same, just dosnt have a name hung to it. Lazo, McDonald, Logan and Vandel. Its no differant, just look at the last meeting when Vandel voted against McDonald and Lazo. Picture is worth its weight in gold sometimes. We, you and I really know how the game works. We have been around way to long to think differant. Is a change needed yes it is. But we wont see it with the form of goverment that we presently have. Chairman Lazo has lost control and he keeps putting himself deeper in the hole.McDonald missed his profession should be the Town Atty. and Logan so smart he forgot how to reason. There is only one choice and thats to elect Gary Fontaine and to forget about the rest. But we cant do that we need to elect 3. I am sorry but Lazo needs to go and let the chips fall from there. I listern to your ideas obout a mayor form of goverment and maybe its time to at least have a serious discussion regarding this. In the good old days the present form of goverment worked but today, forget it, its not working. Hopefully the topic of a moyor form of goverment comes about this next year and at least lets talk about. good day

  3. One would think that the voters of Southbridge would be leery of the personal connections of people on the council or who are running.

    For example, Denise Clemence is very good friends with Ed Moore, the President of Harrington Memorial Hospital.

    Dick Clemence, Denise Clemence’s father-in-law, is the Chairman of the Board and Past President of Hyde Group. He is also on the Board of Trustees for Harrington Memorial Hospital.

    Ron Chernisky is on the Board of Trustees for Harrington Memorial Hospital. Lorna Chernisky runs a business called Oak Transcription, that provides transcription services for Harrington Memorial Hospital.

    Dave Langevin, former councilor and current candidate for Town Council works at Harrington Memorial Hospital.

    Darlene Marcucci works for a Dr. who has his practice at Harrington Memorial Hospital.

    Larry Spinelli who won the Late Councilor Laurent E. McDonald’s council seat in February, works for Dexter Russell, a Hyde Group company.

    Dr. O’Leary worked for a hospital out in Westfield until he was hired by Harrington Memorial Hospital after voting to expand the landfill.

    The fact that Nikolla, Marcucci, and Langevin are apparently running as a ticket should raise alarm bells in the voters’ heads given this information.

    Is this mere coincidence? Highly unlikely.

  4. In defense of Steve Lazo, I'll say this. Solomon himself could not have controlled that Council after the passing of Larry McDonald. With that lamentable event, and the election of Spinelli, he was clearly stuck with the chair of a council in which his supporters were in the minority.
    In the recent candidates' forum, he alone had the audacity to say that this form of government wasn't working and that we should go to a mayor.
    As regards your comments about the minority group being no different than the FOS gang, I thoroughly disagree. The FOS group has a clear and unitary agenda. That is not the case with the others. Nothing made this clearer than my service on the Charter review committee and the issues that were repeatedly supported by a singular set of individuals.
    Finally, when you review my comments in the articles "The Sleaze Factor In Southbridge Politics" and "Ain't That A Crime?" you will find that the deplorable tactics outlined have been practiced solely by the FOS coalition. I know of no similar acts by the minority.

  5. Ken
    you say it yourself Lazo is clearly stuck with the chair of council in which his support were in the minority. His group and with this election he is hoping to change that with his group. As chair its his responsibilty to bring leadership no mater what side he is on its his job to guide the council by Robert Rules not Lazo rules. But he has lost control and he need to go a change is needed. Lazoand Logan need to go. Lets really get a change going and have a movement to change this form of goverment, start a movement get it going this goverment needs fixing. But no matter what folks get out and vote.


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