Hudson Taxes Montreal Gazette

For those interested, you can share as you wish:

I was quoted on how I feel about Hudson’s big legal bills in the Off Island section of the Montreal Gazette this morning, article by Albert Kramberger, Here’s the full text of my response to his emailed question last week, because they cut and paste and use what they want.

For openness and clarity and no one surprised I had openly copied Council and Mayor Prevost when I responded as well.

My reactions to Hudson’s legal bills:

Qualified anger and significant concern would be my simplistic response at the huge legal costs, but directed at the underlying reasons and the few people not on current Council who have taken actions that resulted in these inflated costs in both time and distraction.

There may have been some very minor errors in exact procedures by a new Council, but I believe that there has been absolutely no bad faith or inappropriate action by any of the currently sitting Council and Mayor. We citizens are correctly kept blind of details in most cases by confidentiality required in some of these issues, but from my view the bulk of the causes have seemed like an organized multi-pronged predation by a limited number of sources. Mayor Prevost and Council have been forced to protect the Town interests and their own reputations aggressively because of these outside actions, so I fully understand the reasons for the number of files and costs. Clearly our Town’s lawyers are both cautious and expensive, we need to manage those points into the future.

Perhaps you should be asking those who would have most benefitted had Council not defended themselves adequately? And questioning the myriad of legal protections of municipal employees who are rightly or wrongly terminated or leave their position.

A municipal government seems an easy target of frivolous claims likely to pay out rather than fight. I am proud that we’ve defended not just our Town but the honour of those elected to serve us, but am disgusted by the legal system that allows this type of expensive process to reduce the resources we can allocate to important things.

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5 thoughts on “Hudson Taxes Montreal Gazette

  1. I am going to need to know a bit more about this ” organized multi-prong predation ” before i jump on the Mayor Ed love boat, Peter. OK , so they’ve done their best but they refused continuously to listen to any advice , made a mess of human resources , and treat a lot of relevant questions as an inconvenience . Maybe nobody’s to blame for all the mis-direction , maybe just chaos theory but my feeling is none of these people should run again.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Brian, definitely not well managed. No love here, just respect for a group that stepped up and did the best they could and with one exception didn’t quit.

    I won’t comment on specifics of what I think happened, but when a continuous shit storm like this hits, usually someone’s running the manure spreader flat out.

    The None Run is an ongoing problem. My 2 Questions to those who wish to run again (if any) are:

    1) What did you learn?
    2) Are you F’ing NUTS?

    We just don’t make a warm fuzzy experience out of public service in Hudson.

    My brilliant (except for marrying me) and beautiful wife Diane says it perfectly after completing a ten year sentence as School Commissioner; “I’ll never run to be Mayor of a town I live in”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I am enclosing a copy of my comments to the gazette, I am one (of the many no doubt) that was asked for our comments.

    “Of course all municipalities have legal issues to deal with, but isn’t there any insurance for this? I also understand that town Mayors, Councillors, etc, have their legal battles costs paid by the taxpayer (who would be in public service without this protection) but aren’t there any limits, any guidelines? Furthermore should the taxpayer be on the hook for costs associated with situations such as “Hudson mayor moves to keep ethics complaint under wraps”. http://montrealgazette.com/news/local-news/off-island-gazette/hudson-mayor-moves-to-keep-ethics-complaint-under-wraps. Don’t we as taxpayers have the right to know what allegations we are paying to defend? What did that cost us and was it a necessary part of the defense?

    I think its time some clear guidelines be put in place. How many cases have we fought and lost? How many employees have left or been dismissed and settlement made? how many suppliers have sued and won? Given recent history, the current projection of $150,000 legal fees for 2017 is not realistic. Its time for some common sense to prevail, time to take the lawyers off speed dial, and time to act more like a government office, less like a corporation. Maybe take a little advise from old Kenny Rogers: You’ve got to know when to hold ’em – Know when to fold ’em know when to walk away, and know when to run…… ”

    Honor and being right are truly important values….. but at what cost, when does the bleeding stop?

    Liked by 2 people

  4. i take great issue with the amount of the town’s legal bills incurred over the last few years.

    Their modus operandi seems to be to inflict as much pain as possible on the one who initiated the lawsuit………. case in point is the Judy Sheehan lawsuit. She asked for $25K and after the town spending some $14k on legal bills settled the lawsuit for $23k. Many others like this as well ………….

    Liked by 2 people

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