A letter to the editor from Marshall Miles Reply

Dear Editor:

The reasons to vote NO on the Region One budget are many again, here are but a few…

The public now has a full-blown lack of confidence in the leadership of this board, its objectivity, it’s relationship with the ABC ( All Boards Chairmen), and its direction of Superintendent Chamberlain

Why you ask?

Region 1 school board chairman Phil Hart of Cornwall said he had no prior knowledge of the impending lawsuit before the news broke, but bills submitted to the Board of Education raise questions about that statement, the district’s March invoice for attorneys’ fees details conversations between board attorney Gary Brochu and Ms. Paige’s attorney in reference to litigation over an employee matter and a conversation between Mr. Brochu and Ms. Chamberlain about “the employee issue” and then, a fourth call to Mr. Hart and “about the employee matter.”

An apparent lack of Board involvement by Mr. Hart. After speaking with three Region One Board Members, all said they had NO PRIOR KNOWLEDGE of the suit and had not been advised of one by Mr. Hart. Did Mrs. Fruend, and Mr. Moore have knowledge of the suit? If so why did they, and not the others. And,if not, shame on Mr. Hart.

How could the ABC have offered a three-year contract if they had knowledge of this suit? I ask any of the Board Chair of Region One to inform the public if they had prior knowledge of the suit. If not, shame of Mr. Hart. If so, shame on the ABC for moving forward with a three-year contract recommendation to the Region One Board with the threat of litigation hanging overhead.

Disrespectful statements about Region One taxpayers published from Board Co-Chair Jonathan Moore. A direct quote “… It also astounds me that, of the people I have spoken to since the referendum, they all are vastly misinformed about the budget. And there is no difference as to whether they voted yes or no! They all are misinformed. I guess they are all so flush they don’t worry about their tax dollars enough to seek out the facts….”

And why did the Board not even mention the impending LEGAL COSTS to the region of the lawsuit against Pat Chamberlain at the special meeting? Where is that money going to come from….out of this years budget, or next years? And, for good measure, two of the charges are against Pat as superintendent, and two are personal charges, who pays for what, or does Region One pick up the bill for all? Questions that should have been asked but were not.

How did the administration of Housatonic, and the Region One Board allow Mr. Harnett’s statement be to be made to the press and board about Hotchkiss School and Kent School? As we have seen, Hotchkiss responded and their response makes Region One look quite foolish, and is a great embarrassment to the region.

These are complicated times, and one 2 hour session is not going to come up with answers. It’s no longer just one item that has doomed the budget, it is many items, and a poor perception of the board, the administration, and what came out of the two-hour special session raised more questions than it answered.

Marshall Miles