The Political Column actually defends the Manager this week about notifying the Council on his vacation.
This is from the City Council Packet received on the Friday before the Tuesday meeting and is in fact where I found out he was going to be on vacation. It is in the beginning of the Packet, AUGUST 28, 2012 – CITY MANAGER’S COMMUNICATIONS SUMMARY
I will be away next week due to a previously scheduled vacation. Assistant City Manager Adam Baacke and Chief Financial Officer Tom Moses will be present to provide follow up and additional information as needed. Approved motions will be addressed in the coming weeks.
So the Manager did inform the Council and as he has done in the past, if he is in the area he doesn’t appoint an acting manager.
I do think if reports are true that he was seen at City Hall on Thursday it is a bit arrogant for him to duck a meeting on Tuesday. If you can’t make a Council meeting and duck a subpoena then you should stay away all week.
Reading the 75 pages of the Walter Bayliss VS. Bernie Lynch, City of Lowell Suit filed by Mr, Bayliss and his Atty. Peter Nicosia is fascinating.
Some of the items I found interesting are:
Mr. Bayliss is claiming that since our charter wasn’t updated when Prohibition was lifted the City subject to the general provisions of MGL C 138
Also Plan E went into effect on 1944 but the City Charter was never updated to change the power of appointment from the Mayor (subject to the Council approval) to the Manager.
Lowell does NOT HAVE written provisions governing the definition of cause to remove a License Commissioner
Nor does it it have any written rules or regulations governing the conduct of a License Commissioner
Prior to the August 10th 2012 notice, the City Manager , Council or Mayor have never issued a warning or any type of disciplinary notice to Mr. Bayliss regarding his conduct or service since he was served on the board which dates back to 1995.
It will be interesting to see if the Court on Wednesday Sept. 5th agrees that the Lowell City Charter has not been updated and that therefore Mr. Bayliss must be removed by the Mayor and can appeal in court rather than to the council.
I have no huge issue with the fire dept. wanting wireless boxes to improve on response time. My issue is the lack of “transparency” with the bid specs (Anytime you have a low of $77K and a High of $394K than someone should be asking why) and the apparent disregard by the Lynch Administration for the Inspector General’s statements including:
Additionally, the ill-planned and ill-executed procurement process that required that system users purchase the Keltron brand name fire alarm boxes from East Coast was not only a M.G.L. c.30B violation, but it completely obliterated price competition among distributors of radio fire alarm boxes that would have happened under M.G.L. c.30B.
The City violated the law by failing to conduct a M.G.L. c.30B procurement for the radio fire alarm boxes for the non-municipal users. As a result, the possibility of more favorable terms and conditions that may have been attained from a fair and transparent competition, were not available to customers.
The arrogance of the City Manager and CFO to not only state they don’t recall seeing the letter but for the Manager to justify NOT giving it to the Council and stating a Dept. head doesn’t have to tell him that a State Agency sent the city a letter that says - The City violated the law calls into question his promise in 2006 of Professional Management..
This entire episode only highlights several events that have transpired in the past year where the City Manager and his Administration seem so content and high on themselves for the great fiscal shape the city is in that to them all else is secondary and unimportant. They seem to thrive on political payback to those who oppose, not sharing information with the entire (and at times any) City Councilors and becoming far arrogant in their dealing with the paper who they believe is only out to get them. That isn’t in my humble opinion a trait of “Professional” Management.
Speaking of unprofessional management, I don’t care what the reason or what justification is given by Greater Lowell Supt. for not appointing Dave McLaughlin as equipment manager for the football team, that move was a slap in the face not only to David but to many longtime school employees’s and is one of the many reasons moral is so poor at that school.
Superintendent Santoro needs to work to rebuild moral and by dismissing a person who has shown a longtime love for the students after a lifetime of service to that school is reprehensible and she should be ashamed of herself.
There is no way or reason for this action to be explained and justified and while the School Committee cannot take any action, those who have supported the football team and athletics at the school should send emails voicing your displeasure to each member and the Supt.
What’s next removing him as Baseball Coach?
I have supported Supt. in the past and like the Manager believe she is doing a good job but this move only highlights that she is partially responsible for the poor moral at the school and should make the School Committee think long and hard about a new contract if this type of behavior and respect she is showing to longtime employees. This is a type of political payback for a person who doesn’t 100% agree with her and is wrong!