2009-12-10 / Letters to the Editor

A regret at leaving Town Council

With the election now behind us and the new Town Council seated, I would like to take this opportunity to wish these new members every success in their term of office. The pressures of these difficult economic times will be the principal challenge that this council will have to deal with.

The choice of Michael Schnack as council president is an encouraging start. I had the pleasure of serving with Mike when he was previously on the council; he does his homework, comes to council meetings prepared and his experience in labor relations will be vital in the upcoming budget processes.

Looking back at my terms on the council, I believe it appropriate to thank the Democratic Town Committee for their support and encouragement, as well as friends, acquaintances and the voters that gave me the opportunity to serve on the council. It has proven to be a very rewarding experience.

David Long was the president and leader of that council, which I was fortunate to be a member of along with Mike Schnack, Julio DiGiando and Barbara Szepatowski; we made signifi cant progress resolving some long-standing issues, such as finalizing the location of the DPW facility, which was one of the most long-standing and bitterly debated of issues. I would have preferred a different location, but once the voters made their decision, it was time to move on. That facility is now completed, up and running and the men of the DPW now have a home of which they can be proud. Town Hall was approved and built, and is a building which is both functional and appropriate for our community. A major portion of the farms’ development rights have been obtained and the DPW now has decent equipment that they can do their jobs with, i.e., snow plowing, which is such a vital service to the community.

I have been asked if I have any regrets about not continuing on the council. The one regret I do have will be the lack of opportunity to interface with the very professional staff that makes up our town’s administration. We are fortunate to have such a dedicated group of individuals. Working with and through Bruce Keiser, our town administrator, I have witnessed on a day-today basis their commitment to serving the community of Jamestown.

Bruce Keiser is very knowledgeable in Rhode Island laws and regulations, and has done an excellent job in preparing and administering the town’s budget. Arlene Petit, the town clerk; Steve Goslee, the DPW di- rector; Mike Gray, the town engineer; Lisa Bryer, the town planner; Fred Brown, the building inspector; Tina Collins, the finance director; Ken Gray, tax assessor and Kevin Deacon, the DPW supervisor, day in and day out demonstrate their commitment to bettering this community, along with the members of their staffs. I have truly enjoyed the opportunity of working with them on a variety of projects.
Bill Kelly

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