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  • 27 Aug 2014

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The Valley Reporter
P.O. Box 119
Waitsfield, VT 05673
802-496-3928
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Misimpression

To The Editor:

I am forwarding this letter relating to the article in the February 13, 2014, edition of The Valley Reporter. The headline and first paragraph in last week's story on Duxbury create a misimpression and misstatement of what took place. The town did not surrender the titles "to satisfy an unpaid balance...." The titles were used as collateral on the extension for the loan balance still outstanding.

The select board has asked the town clerk to explain how and when his contribution to his health insurance was reduced. He informed the auditor that town employees contribute 15 percent and he has only been contributing 5 percent, a reduction from the 10 percent he contributed previously. We forwarded a letter asking for an answer on or before our February meeting and have received no response to date.

The article misquoted me as saying, "We don't go in and double-check anything." My actual statement was we don't go in and double-check everything. All bills are signed off on by two board members before payment and then are reviewed and approved by at least three members after they are paid.

The former treasurer played no part in the preparation of the FEMA documents, project worksheets, etc. His role was limited to payment of the bills, deposit of reimbursements and payment of the line of credit. The unfortunate comingling of the town's ordinary operational expenses with the storm damage expenses made the process difficult. At no time was anyone involved in "speaking FEMA."

The select board has expressed concern over the failure to balance the town's checkbook and reconcile vendor statements on a monthly basis. We attempted on several occasions to meet and deal with these and other questions only to be rebuffed with his answer that we had no control over the position or he did not know the answer and we would have to consult the auditor.

Dick Charland
Duxbury Select Board

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