Right to speak out on Conte School

Tuesday April 23, 2013

In reference to the letter of April 15 by North Adams City Councilor Jennifer M. Breen regarding the old Conte School project and her innuendoes about private citizens, her statements are problematic at best, ballistic at worse.

I wrote a letter in the Transcript on March 22, regarding Conte saying in part, "Beware of the old snake oil salesman hard at work" and that the choice was now in the hands of the voters on April 30. She claims the city has a rare opportunity to get millions and if we don't we will have to reapply and be at the bottom. The money will always be there and no one from the MSBA said anything about losing the up to 80 percent of the $23 million. The money is not a gift, it comes from the taxpayers of Massachusetts.

There is no location for a new school. It will be refurbishing, renovating, or restoring a more than 100-year-old building. She claims that our taxes will not be raised. Does she have a crystal ball? They have gone up over the last three years and are going up again this year and next too.

Now to her lampooning of citizens' right to speak. Ms. Breen, the citizens who elected you, your constituents, have more rights then public officials. It's a fundamental principle of our Constitution for the public to speak one's mind regarding public officials without malice or slander, although not always with perfect good taste.

Is Ms. Breen the cheerleader for the mayor's office now? What is her agenda? Remember, it's more then about Conte School, it's now about her political future as this is also an election year. It's now time for the voters of North Adams to decide. Again this has only been my personal opinion as a citizen. MARK TROTTIER

North Adams


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