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Questions for Selectmen Candidates

SCTV and the Salisbury Beach Betterment Association (SBBA) are co-sponsoring Candidates' Night on Tuesday, April 29 at 7 PM in Salisbury Town Hall.  The first five questions below are have been submitted to the Selectmen candidates in advance.  They will each have 3 minutes to answer these questions.  After this round, we will open a second round for questions from the audience. If you scroll farther down below, you can see questions that have been submitted for both rounds.  We publish these so citizens can ask different questions or seek more detailed answers.  They are posted as a forum for Salisbury citizens to discuss the most important topics on people's minds.  We invite you to engage in a civil dialog.  

We encourage you to submit questions to the candidates by clicking here to bring up the form. 


1.  In your opinion what are the pluses and minuses of the development plan by the Salisbury Beach Partnership, and why might it be more successful than the Thompson Group plan? 

 

2.  Salisbury is planning several projects that would raise taxes or betterment fees to home and business owners, including a new police station and extensions of the sewer project.  What projects do you favor or oppose?

                                          
3.  During the off-season, Salisbury motels are a refuge for families who are down on their luck or have lost their homes.  As a Town, have we done enough to ensure their safe housing and protection? Should we do more?

 

4.  A controversy has arisen over Massachusetts laws governing the Building Department and the Board of Health.  In the past, Town officials might have “looked the other way” on certain projects and issues. How would you draw the line between “flexibility” and basically ignoring the building codes and other State laws? 

 

5.  Does the Board of Selectmen or any board have a right to question individual operating decisions of the Town Manager or his subordinates, or are the Selectmen supposed to only set policy direction and judge the Manager's overall performance?  


Other Questions Submitted by Salisbury Citizens


Town Charter, Power of Town Manager, Building Inspector

Since there has been a difference of philosophies with the town manager and boards, would you be for the selectmen developing a policy to aid in a mediation process before any board is replaced? Although the charter allows the Town manager operation of daily affairs, Sect 1 of the charter, gives the selectmen the authority over the entire matters of the town.

Do you support the current town charter with its strong town manager form of government?


In a Daily News article from April 2, the Town Manager was quoted as saying with reference to the building inspector, "With Dave, it was never a case of who you knew.  Obviously, that has rubbed some people in the community the wrong way and led to conflicts with several local contractors."   This implies that favoritism or "who you know" was the norm in Salisbury. Do you believe that, and if so, as a Selectman, how would you change that culture to assure residents that everyone will be treated equally regardless of "who you know?”


Should the town manager be able to deny legal counsel to a legally constituted Salisbury board whether he has appointed them or not?

Board of Health, Beach Road Motels

Given the fact that we have a charter, what do you see as your role if elected, and how do you think you can help change the reputation of Salisbury, especially in regards to the current situation with the motel issues that face the Board of Health?


How would you as a Selectman address the situation concerning the Board of Health? Please explain the problems as you see them and what can be done to resolve them.

The dispute between the former BOH and the Town Manager seems to have had at its core the Board's legal obligation to enforce state laws regarding motel habitability and licensing and the Manager's apparent reluctance to do so.  How do you see that dispute, how would you resolve it and how would you ensure that the newly constituted Board will enforce those laws ?

Why did it take almost six months for the BOH to get wind of a citizen petition regarding illegal clam dumping? Because privileged individuals did the dumping. Where was that petition for six months? Guess! How did the BOH find out? The citizens came to [the Board of Health] DIRECTLY!

WBUR radio recently had an extensive news story on winter rentals at the beach involving some people paying $250 a week to stay in Beach Road motels. Do you believe the motels in Salisbury comply with state Board of Health regulations?  If you had family members coming to visit you in Salisbury, and there was no room at your house, would you book them rooms to stay in these Beach Road motels?

The taxpayers are concerned about having too many trash haulers servicing the town. There have been several meetings and conversations regarding this issue, yet nothing had been done. What steps would you take to help rectify this situation? Obviously, we need more than the board of health to weigh in on this issue.

Sand and Beach

Do you see an inherent conflict asking the state to buy sand to protect the beach at the same time the town is asking the state to invest in infrastructure at the beach center?  Doesn't the first suggest that the second is a bad use of tax dollars putting tax funded investment where it is at risk?


What steps should the Town take to address issues associated with potential future coastal storms? Please be specific and include both long term and short term items.


General

The taxpayers are concerned about having too many trash haulers servicing the town. There have been several meetings and conversations regarding this issue, yet nothing had been done. What steps would you take to help rectify this situation? Obviously, we need more than the board of health to weigh in on this issue.


Lafayette Road from the square to the NH line is going to be repaved, sewered, and re-zoned. This will open up new possibilities for commercial and residential development on that roadway. What is your vision for Lafayette Road?


We encourage you to submit questions to the candidates by clicking here to bring up the form.