This is in response to the George Tremblay letter titled, “Who qualifies to serve on boards in Charlestown?” published on Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019. Mr. Tremblay is a former town council member in his town. He was responding to comments about Charlestown and appointments, to quote “ … town council should appoint ‘the best qualified candidates’ for boards and commissions without consideration of political affiliation.”
Who Charlestown or any community appoints is their business, pretty much. Any town council can appoint anyone they choose, provided they meet basic qualifications. The political power, especially, of a town council is wielded through the appointment process, enactment of ordinances, and formulating a town budget. In the Chariho region, it needs to be noted, that unlike single municipal school districts, the town councils do not have the power to formally vote on the Chariho school budget.
One needs to note there is both a political and professional aspect of government. Generally speaking, the political aspects are done by elected officials, and the professional aspects by staff. The staff on the town level is hired by a town manager. The town manager is appointed by a town council. The Chariho School Committee is also a political body, not a professional one, of 12 elected individuals, four from each member town.
Hopkinton residents can reach me at (401) 360-4603 or (401) 529-3240, and at firstname.lastname@example.org, with any comments or concerns.
Scott Bill Hirst
The writer is the vice president of the Hopkinton Town Council.