Planning Board, 10-19-17

The planning board had a quick, 30-minute meeting on October 19, 2017. John Cameron was elected chairman and Matt Young vice-chairman.

Agenda:

I. Scheduled Appointments

Justin Tetherly Site Plan Review; Relocation of Storage Bins Tax Map #55-2-23

Sentinel Ministries Site Plan Review; Sentinel Ministries Parsonage Tax Map #34-1-1

II. Approval of Minutes

October 5, 2017

III. Action Items

a. Appointment of Chairman
b. Steve Hunter; Amendment of NHDOT Driveway Permit

IV. Discussion
Item a. Planning Board Rules of Procedure, Mission Statement & Policy Statement

V. Informational Items

VI. Other Business

VII. Adjournment

Carolyn Sundquist Mocked Route 171 Safety Concerns

Carolyn Sundquist, then the chairman of the board of selectmen, mocked my concerns about traffic safety on Route 171, an August 3, 2016, email reveals.

Selectman Bill Marcussen had suggested that the lanes on Route 171 (Maintain Road) could be narrowed. Route 171 is a state road, so the selectmen would not have had the final decision about the matter in any case. In response to Bill’s suggestion that the road be narrowed, I emailed the selectmen and asked them to convey to the state my concerns: Mountain Road is already narrow, and I’ve experienced several nearly head-on accidents there when oncoming cars crossed the yellow line on blind curves or hills.

Instead of taking my concerns seriously, Carolyn seems to have mocked them, joking in an email to the selectmen’s administrative secretary, Karen Koch, that I sounded “like a menace on the road” and that they “should see if he has a license.”

I don’t mind that Carolyn made a joke, but I know that I’m not the only one in town to have almost had an accident on Route 171.

Selectmen to Set Tax Rate for 2018 Update: CANCELLED

Update: The meeting has been cancelled. No indication yet when the tax rate will be set. Original post below:

The board of selectmen (Lloyd Wood, Bill Marcussen, and Chip Albee) are meeting tomorrow at 8:30AM, Thursday, October 26, at the town offices. Their regular meetings are Mondays. Tomorrow’s meeting is classified as a work session, which means they will not allow public comment.

How the Selectmen Waste Your Money

The selectmen are redacting public information from government records that they have provided to me as the result of a Right to Know request I made for emails between town employees and the town’s IT vendor, Tom Albert of Computer Port, Inc, in North Conway.

In the attached email, the selectmen have redacted the name server for tuftonboro.org.

If you don’t know what a name server is, don’t worry about it. The short version is that when you type “tuftonboro.org” into the address bar of your browser and hit enter, the browser uses the name server to determine the IP address of the web site. If you don’t know what an IP address is, you can think of it as the website’s phone number. In this analogy, “tuftonboro.org” is your friend’s name, the name server is the phone book, and the IP address is the phone number.

The point is, the name server is public — it’s not confidential. There are many tools for looking up a website’s name servers, but to provide just one example you can look up the name servers for Tuftonboro.org right here. (Having two name servers is normal.) The name servers for tuftonboro.org are:

NS1.OXFORDNETWORKS.NET
NS2.OXFORDNETWORKS.NET

Again, this is not secret information. The name servers for this site, tuftonboro.net, are:
ROB.NS.CLOUDFLARE.COM
ROSA.NS.CLOUDFLARE.COM

So why are the selectmen wasting your tax money redacting publicly available information?

The selectmen have spent about $20,000 over the past year attempting to make it harder for the public to know what they’re doing. They filed a lawsuit against Bob McWhirter and me, which they lost, because they wanted to charge us 25 cents per page to inspect government records, even though the law states clearly that “no fee shall be charged for the inspection or delivery, without copying, of governmental records, whether in paper, electronic, or other form.”

Having spent so much of your tax money on their lawsuit, they don’t want to admit that they were wrong, I believe. Thus, they do absurd things like redact Bob McWhirter’s telephone number and mailing address from emails that they provided to Bob McWhirter himself.

The selectmen paid their attorney, Richard Sager, $175 an hour to keep Bob’s email address, telephone number, and mailing address from Bob. One wonders, what they thought would be the consequences of informing Bob what his own phone number is. Perhaps they thought he would do something foolish, like give it out. They surely didn’t want to be responsible for that. People he had given his number to as a result of the town’s actions might then call him!

Fire Department and Transfer Station Reports for September

At Monday’s selectmen’s meeting several department heads gave their monthly reports to the board. Attached are the fire department and transfer station reports.

Click to view:

fire department 2017-9

transfer station 2017-9