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Letter: An open letter to town government

• We do not support appointment of an officer of a political party committee. Town board members should represent all the citizens of Bethlehem, not just those enrolled in their party and the presence of a political party leader on the Board conflicts with that expectation. In addition, the appointment of a party officer also creates the potential for pressure and undue influence, because other Board members will eventually need to seek his or her endorsement for any future run for office.

• Similarly we are concerned about the potential conflict of interest in appointing someone who holds a top position in a neighboring municipality, one that could compete with Bethlehem for economic development investment as well as state and federal grants.

Lastly we urge you to arrange for a public forum to vet candidates with respect to their background, qualifications, and ideas, which would also allow the public to hear from those wishing to be considered for this interim appointment. Such an open and transparent process would be an excellent way to begin your work together as a new board.

Achieving success for our town’s residents will necessitate each of you to work together based on principles of mutual respect, cooperation and collaboration. Filling this board vacancy provides an opportunity to put those principles into practice right from the start. With that accomplished we have confidence that you can continue to move forward operating within this framework, resulting in many positive outcomes in 2012.

Sincerely,

Keith W. Bennett

Delmar

Patrick J. Bulgaro

Slingerlands

Paul and Maureen Cagino

Glenmont

Lisa Callahan and Mark Bryant

Delmar

Lois Dorman

Slingerlands

Lisa and Bruce Finkle

Delmar

John Guastella

Delmar

Susan and Tom Hager

Glenmont

Linda Jasinski

Selkirk

Judi E. Kehoe

Delmar

Mark Joseph Kelly

Delmar

Jean Kerr

Delmar

Kathleen L. Martens

Glenmont

Maureen McLeod

Delmar

Jan and Sam Messina

Delmar

Robert P. Miller

Delmar

Terry Moskowitz

Delmar

Chan Noether

Delmar

Ellie Prakken and John Smolinsky

Delmar

Ross and Marge Prinzo

Glenmont

Joseph P. Richardson

Slingerlands

Pam and Don Robbins

Slingerlands

William Seyler

Delmar

Hank and Carolyn Steadman

Delmar

Judy Thompson

Delmar

Keith Wiggand

Glenmont

Lois Wilson

Glenmont

Barbara Zaron

Slingerlands

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