"I had the money in my budget, I had the authority to do this," he said.
Town Attorney James Potter said that while the town code says the board must authorize contracts, the board also delegates authority to enter into them in many situations for practicality's sake. If a Highway Department needed to purchase shovels, for example, the superintendent wouldn't have to come before the board to authorize the expenditure.
There is a schedule of purchasing practices, Potter continued, which details the limits of this policy.
Looking at policy, however, he was unable to say if the current situation would have been allowed or not.
"This written guideline is not crystal clear," Potter said.
This assumes the expense falls under the category of the line item, though. Several board members said the idea of Webcasting had come up in the budgeting process.
"The board had opined on this situation. The board had removed it from the budget," Kotary said.
Messina said everyone liked the idea, but the cost being discussed at that time was much higher, around $60,000 to $80,000.
"It's clearly documented that [former supervisor Jack Cunningham] thought this was a good idea to have streaming video, just that the cost was too much," Messina said.
Hennessey suggested pulling the contract back and going into a competitive bidding process.
"I will be very happy to work with you on a project like this so we can put it out to competitive bid," Hennessey said.
Messina declined, at which time Councilman Mark Jordan presented a motion to rescind the contract.