Category Archives: PR hire

The Real Reason TRSD Hired a PR Consultant

“…[T]here are people out here who are trying to sabotage things…”

This is how Rob Collins, former Chairman of the Timberlane School Board, feels about this blog and the representation that Mr. Green and I are providing.  He and the district will be using your taxpayer dollars by way of a PR person to combat the public policy measures we are advocating.

Here is a clip from Danville’s fascinating Selectman’s meeting of Dec. 22 where they discussed trying to change the district’s funding formula or withdrawing from the school district.   I disagree with virtually everything Mr. Collins says at this meeting and would dispute the relevance of his facts, especially his claim that our cost per pupil is in the lowest third for the entire state.  Why does Timberlane think it should be comparing itself to tiny school districts in rural areas?  Of the ten school districts in the state  similar in size to Timberlane, we have the third highest cost per pupil for 2013-2014.  I could go on disputing his reasoning, but I  most want to draw to your attention to the real reason Timberlane hired a PR specialist, according to the man who was instrumental in the bidding and contracting process.

Now Mr. Collins’ own words:

Citizen:  Why do we need a PR person?

Rob Collins: “I was on the chair of the committee that spearheaded that.  So the last five years, you may recall, that in the mail you get something called School Board Notes…  predominantly I wrote that…  To mail that out 4 times a year costs about $12,000, maybe a little bit more…  We’ve stopped that.  We’re not doing that.  To hire the PR consultant  is less than that.  It’s $10,500.

Citizen:  That is not a full year cost.
Collins:  You’re right… it is to the end of June.
Citizen: Why do you need a PR person for a public high school that our kids have to go to?
Collins:  “Well, it is for the entire district actually.  It would be for efforts like educating the public on the [funding] formula.  It would be for efforts for getting out information that’s true and not skewed like we see currently.  That’s right.  That’s Mr. Green right there bravely waving his hand.  So there are people out here who are trying to sabotage things and we cannot work our jobs, meet twice a month, and deal with things like what’s going on which angers people…”
Watch it yourself:    http://vimeo.com/115743437

The law has something to say about this. RSA 659:44-a Electioneering by Public Employees:

No public employee, as defined in RSA 273-A:1, IX, shall electioneer while in the performance of his or her official duties or use government property, including, but not limited to, telephones, facsimile machines, vehicles, and computers, for electioneering.  For the purposes of this section, “electioneer” means to act in any way specifically designed to influence the vote of a voter on any question or office.  Any person who violates this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

A public employee is defined as “any person employed by a public employer . . .”  with some other qualifications not pertaining to a PR consultant.

Here is the whole meeting:  http://vimeo.com/115743437

The Attorney General’s Role in Overseeing Municipal Governance , by:

http://www.nhbar.org/publications/display-journal-issue.asp?id=382

 

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3 Comments

Filed under Budget 2015-2016, Pinocchio Academy, PR hire, Sandown Issues, School Board Behavior, Taxes

Complaint to the Office of Public Integrity

Nov.24, 2014

Dear Attorney General:

We submit the attached letter of complaint for your attention with the faith that you will forward it to the appropriate investigative team under your supervision.
The first attachment in this email is our letter of complaint concerning the Timberlane Regional School District and SAU #55 for a repeated pattern of withholding public information for political purposes and charging people in elective office for that information. The second attachment is a very detailed history of municipal budget law violations at Timberlane supported by extensive documentation we have uploaded to Google drive. The budget infractions are just a part of our larger complaint.
Thank you for your attention to this matter and we hope to hear from you soon to learn who will be investigating our complaint.
Sincerely,
Donna Green
Arthur Green

6 Comments

Filed under Budget Committee, Expenditures, Non-public session abuse, PR hire, Right to Know issues, Sandown Issues, SAU 55 Issues, School Board Behavior, Spanish Consultant Contract

How Things Work: PR continued

Here are two meeting clips, four months apart, that show a contradiction about the intention of the Community Advisory Committee in recommending (or not) a professional PR person for the district.   Given that the September minutes of the CAC are not yet released, there is no way to know whether what we see here is an evolution of position or a less kind interpretation.  Perhaps someone from the CAC will step forward and set the record straight.

In the first clip, from May 29, the school board liaison for the Community Advisory Committee (CAC), Kate Delfino, speaks of the CAC’s recommendation which  she said did not necessarily envision hiring a professional PR person. In fact, Ms. Delfino firmly denies that a professional hire is required by the CAC.

Now here is a clip from the school board October 2 meeting.  While the board was discussing a Request for Proposal for professional PR services, Ms. Delfino says that hiring a PR professional came out of the CAC recommendations where they felt strongly a professional PR person was needed:

This matter of fact is important because the CAC is going to be taking the public blame for recommending the expenditure of taxpayer money for a spin doctor which the school board is about to hire. Will the real decision maker please step forward.

You can view the entirety of any meeting at Timberlane.net where at the bottom of the page you will see “School Board Vimeos.”

 

 

2 Comments

Filed under Expenditures, PR hire, School Board Issues