I had the opportunity of working with Bill Keohan for several years in the early days of the Community Preservation Committee. Under his leadership, the committee was able to accomplish great things in conservation of open space, while also providing significant support for both the town’s historical structures and its senior citizen housing, often by leveraging limited funds to obtain significant outside grant support for these projects.

I find it sad that the Select Board, at its June 11 meeting, chose not to retain Bill’s considerable volunteer talents, particularly as some of the votes seemed to be based on short-sighted, personality-driven considerations.

My deeper issue, however, is with the process itself. Three of the five members asked insightful questions; only one, however, cited those questions and answers as a reason for their ultimate vote, and attempted to open a discussion. The other four members responded with dead silence.

This is not how good town governance works, being run by a Select Board that seemingly dislikes independent thought, and is unable or unwilling to articulate what qualifications, experience, or talents are particularly valued or significant in service to the town. It is hardly a surprise that the residents of Plymouth are apathetic when the members of the Select Board, while they may appear to listen, do not hear those residents. Neither, at the most recent meeting, did they demonstrate the openness and accountability necessary for a healthy democratic process.

Peggy M. Baker

Share this story

We believe that journalism as a public service should be free to the community.
That’s why the support of donors like you is critical.

Thank you to our sponsors. Become a sponsor.