Letter: Elect Zurrin to be an Egremont watchdog

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Elect Zurrin to be an Egremont watchdog

To the editor:

The May 10 Egremont election for selectman is all about the taxpayers. These are some of the reasons we need to elect Kevin Zurrin as to be a watchdog on town expenses, to protect residents' pocketbooks, wallets and bank accounts.

This year our town's expenses may go up over 7 percent if the administration's plans are approved at the town meeting. In the past, under the current chairman of the Board of Selectmen, Bruce Turner, new positions were created to do what the Selectmen should have been doing. If elected, Zurrin will scrutinize this type of activity very carefully to protect your bank account.

Under Turner's watch as the chairman, the Selectmen summarily fired Police Chief Reena Bucknell with insufficient regard for the legal ramifications. Now there is a pending lawsuit in Superior Court against our town and against each selectman. The Selectmen could have simply decided not to renew Bucknell's contract but chose not to. They did not have to smear her reputation and open up the town of Egremont to a big lawsuit. Currently, a trial is forthcoming. It may cost Egremont taxpayers big-time should Chief Bucknell win. If Zurrin had been a selectman at the time, a much better solution would have been found.

As a Finance Committee member a few years ago, Zurrin discovered that the Egremont Water Company was losing many thousands of dollars each year because the company was routinely failing to send out monthly bills to its customers. His digging brought down a barrage of wrath by the Selectmen headed by Mr. Turner.

But Zurrin's assertions proved to be correct. His sleuthing forced the Selectmen and the water company to put new billing procedures in place. Now, instead of our taxpayers paying out hundreds of thousands of dollars per year to subsidize it, the water company is collecting the money owed. This year the subsidy will shrink to some $25,000 thanks to Zurrin's watchdog efforts to protect your bank account.

Zurrin will also make certain that all citizens who may appear before the board will receive fair, dignified and courteous treatment with no bullying from its members as has been occurring in the past under the current board chairman.

Our residents deserve much better. Please give Kevin Zurrin your vote and your support.

William Weigle, Egremont


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