Governor – Urban Town Hall Meeting – Sunday

Via JOB on Facebook, Deval Patrick will be having an “Urban Town Hall Meeting” at 7pm (doors open at 6:30pm) at Christ Tabernacle Apostolic Church, 1189 Main Street, Worcester (which has absolutely no parking, except for on-street, so be urban and walk, or take a bus or cab).  For more info, call 508-756-0238 or visit ctacministries.org

I wonder if he’ll go to stART on the Street beforehand?

Next Week at City Hall

There’s a full docket of meetings next week at City Hall, so here’s a list of what’s up and why you should care. 

I would love to see more people covering these meetings.  If there is one thing I would like to show with this blog, it’s that citizens do care about the lesser-covered aspects of city government (the library and public works, especially) and that we as citizens should try to inform other citizens about what’s going on.

If you don’t have a blog, and you don’t care to have one, but you would like to go to a meeting and write a summary of what happened, email me and I’ll post it.

I’m also looking for someone who’d like to do some research into the Wheels-to-Water program.  Send me a note if you’d like more details.

Monday, May 17
5:30pm — Worcester Conservation Commission Meeting, City Hall, Room 312.
Why should I care?  Who knows?  They haven’t posted the agenda yet.

6:00pm — City Council Standing Committee on Rules and Legislative Affairs Meeting, Levi Lincoln Chamber.
Why should I care?  They will be discussing Ron Madnick’s petitions to have a Public Access forum at the start of every Council meeting and to allow the primary petitioner for any item before the city council to speak on his or her petition the day it appears on the agenda.  This is important, folks.  I will actually attend/liveblog this meeting, because it is that important.  If you think the Council does not listen to enough regular folks, show your face at this meeting.  

6:30pm — City Council Standing Committee Joint Public Works and Public Service and Transportation Meeting, Esther Howland Chamber.
Why should I care?  They’re going to talk about CSX.

Tuesday, May 18
4:30pm — City Council Standing Committee on Public Works Meeting, Esther Howland Chamber.
Why should I care?  There’s a petition to make part of Austin Street private, and they might discuss water and sewer rates.

5:00pm — Board of Library Directors Ad Hoc Committee on Personnel Meeting, Main Library.
Why should I care?  They might be discussing the new head librarian candidates.  (Also, I cannot attend this meeting, and wasn’t able to attend the last one, and I really think the library needs better coverage.)

5:30pm — City Council Standing Committee on Finance Meeting, Esther Howland Chamber.
Why should I care?  They’re talking budget this week & next week.  If you feel passionately about any aspect of the budget, or if you have unique insights, I’d like to hear about it.

Thursday, May 20
7:00pm — School Committee Meeting
Why should I care?  Well, you know Tracy’s going to cover it well, but perhaps she might like a break…

7:00pm — Parks and Recreation Commission Meeting, 50 Skyline Drive.
Why should I care?  Maybe you can go and get some details about how Wheels-to-Water will work this year.

Hurley on embarrassing details

The Daily Leicester published the weekly dispatch from the Leicester Police Chief yesterday, and one of the things he chose to address was this incident, which the Daily Leicester reported on, and which the Telegram reported on (and included certain details that the Daily Leicester did not report, and which I’d rather not repeat).

He did address some questions about why those embarrassing details would be included in the officer’s report:

Q. – Why would the police officer put embarrassing information in his report knowing that the report could be publicly released?

A. – In order for a police officer to make an arrest, the officer must establish probable cause that a crime was committed. The officer established probable cause that the suspect had committed the offense of operating under the influence of intoxicating liquor. In this case a number of embarrassing facts assisted the officer in determining probable cause and thus have evidential value in the prosecution of the suspect. The public must also remember that if the embarrassing facts were left out, they could not be used to help secure a conviction and the LPD would be guilty of treating this suspect differently than other individuals arrested for operating under the influence of intoxicating liquor, and that is not the way we do business at the LPD.

Q. – How would the media come up with the information contained in the police report, if the LPD did not release it?

A. – The LPD is required to file a copy of the police report with the clerk’s office at the court house. Once the report is included in the file at the court, it becomes public record but is also subject to redactions, as set forth under the public records law.

Finally, I would ask all of those people who are questioning the police department’s motives for including the “embarrassing facts” in the police report to answer this question:

Q. – What would you think if the police report did not contain the embarrassing facts and it later came out that they were intentionally omitted?

A. – Police cover up!

The whole piece is well worth a read.  It’s also a great public service to the people of the town to have a chief respond to these questions thoughtfully.