Go Back   Winnipesaukee Forum > Lake Issues > General Issues
Home Forums Gallery YouTube Channel Classifieds Links Calendar Register FAQDonate Members List Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 02-23-2015, 06:21 PM   #1
lagoon
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Posts: 46
Thanks: 2
Thanked 6 Times in 4 Posts
Default Alton Tries to Silence its Citizens

From the Union Leader, gotta think this will backfire on Alton Selectmen for sure.

Quote:
THE UNION LEADER

Arrested in Alton: Selectmen silence a critic
On Feb. 3, Alton’s Board of Selectmen had a town resident arrested for criticizing them. This is not going to end well for the town.

At the board meeting that evening, resident Jeffrey T. Clay sat down to speak during the time allotted for public comments. The board allows each speaker five minutes, and Clay brought a timer to make sure he got his — and the selectmen got theirs.

Clay, a longtime critic of the board, according to the Laconia Daily Sun, which first reported the story, immediately asked all members to resign for their “poor actions as selectmen,” “poor decisions” and “continued violations of the citizens’ rights here in Alton.”

At that last phrase, Selectman David Hussey raised his hand, said “This is character assassination,” and walked out of the room to fetch the chief of police, the town video (www.alton.nh.gov/Videos.asp) shows. Exactly 38 seconds had elapsed between the time Clay stated his name for the record and Hussey moved to shut him up.

The board voted to end the public comment section, claiming that Clay had uttered “defamatory” and “libelous” statements. (Good luck proving that in court.) Clay kept talking, and Chief Ryan Heath came to escort him out, the Daily Sun reported. When Clay refused to stop speaking, Heath arrested him.

Elected officials present themselves for criticism, much of it unjustified, the moment they file to run for office.

They may choose to ignore it, respond to it, even mock it. But they may not have their critics arrested.

We suspect that Alton taxpayers are about to spend a good deal of money in legal fees for that civics lesson.
- See more at: http://www.unionleader.com/article/2....UHmUR3IS.dpuf
lagoon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2015, 06:47 PM   #2
dickiej
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Newburyport, MA
Posts: 115
Thanks: 3
Thanked 63 Times in 30 Posts
Default

Wow.....the underbelly of living in a small town, eh? I might remind the selectmen that lots of blood has been shed in our history protecting citizens rights to criticize the government. If they're going to run for office they need to have thick skin and take the criticism. It's not always pleasant, but as American citizens we do have the right to voice our opinion.
dickiej is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to dickiej For This Useful Post:
granitebox (02-24-2015), Misha888 (03-29-2015), wynndog (02-24-2015)
Old 02-23-2015, 07:35 PM   #3
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

The selectmen didn't have the citizen arrested, they asked the police chief to remove him. The citizen was told by the chief many times to stop talking and leave the room. The citizen refused to leave and kept talking. The chief had no choice but to arrest him. He would not have been arrested if he would have followed the chiefs instructions.

Why do some citizens have to harass public servants with comments like that gentleman made? I know, free speech...but gee whiz.
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Rusty For This Useful Post:
DRH (02-23-2015), Slickcraft (02-24-2015), upthesaukee (02-23-2015)
Old 02-23-2015, 08:25 PM   #4
Merrymeeting
Senior Member
 
Merrymeeting's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Merrymeeting Lake, New Durham
Posts: 1,991
Thanks: 238
Thanked 684 Times in 299 Posts
Default

And it's incidents like this that result in fewer and fewer people choosing to volunteer to fill these roles.

Most town offices, including Selectmen, now have only one candidate who therefore wins by default. Many seem to forget that the majority of these roles in small towns are unpaid, volunteer positions, not ones that are typically filled by "career politicians".
Merrymeeting is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to Merrymeeting For This Useful Post:
DRH (02-23-2015), Rusty (02-23-2015), Slickcraft (02-24-2015), upthesaukee (02-23-2015)
Old 02-23-2015, 08:37 PM   #5
ITD
Senior Member
 
ITD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Massachusetts and Moultonboro, NH
Posts: 2,290
Thanks: 334
Thanked 419 Times in 243 Posts
Default

If they can't handle public criticism they should not be in public office, the selectmen should have given him his 5 minutes, he probably would have gone home satisfied, the selectmen would have forgotten about it in about 10 minutes and it would have been over. Instead, they need to exert their authority and make mountain out of molehill. The town will end up paying for this, it should in my opinion.
ITD is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 11 Users Say Thank You to ITD For This Useful Post:
CaptT820 (03-05-2015), chattypatty (02-25-2015), Grandpa Redneck (02-24-2015), granitebox (02-24-2015), laketrout (05-17-2015), Marauder (03-01-2015), Ms Molly McKever (02-23-2015), Natt (02-24-2015), Resident 2B (02-25-2015), secondcurve (02-24-2015), tis (02-24-2015)
Sponsored Links
Old 02-23-2015, 08:39 PM   #6
wifi
Senior Member
 
wifi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Lakes Region
Posts: 1,321
Thanks: 282
Thanked 287 Times in 169 Posts
Default

If a citizen is given five minutes to speak, short of emitting vulgar language, the citizen has the right to speak his mind. Nobody, including the police, has the right to determine or punish what he says. I seem to remember a similar scene in Gilford.

I put up with more than five continuous minutes of unpleasant criticism at work most every day... no one gets arrested.
wifi is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 8 Users Say Thank You to wifi For This Useful Post:
chattypatty (02-25-2015), Grandpa Redneck (02-24-2015), granitebox (02-24-2015), LakeSnake (02-24-2015), Marauder (03-01-2015), riverat (02-26-2015), secondcurve (02-24-2015), tis (02-24-2015)
Old 02-23-2015, 08:44 PM   #7
Mr. V
Senior Member
 
Mr. V's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: the left coast (Portland)and West Alton
Posts: 743
Thanks: 12
Thanked 79 Times in 56 Posts
Default

I hope the guy who was arrested has the sense to talk to a lawyer about this.

*I smell a lawsuit*
Mr. V is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2015, 08:57 PM   #8
Merrymeeting
Senior Member
 
Merrymeeting's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Merrymeeting Lake, New Durham
Posts: 1,991
Thanks: 238
Thanked 684 Times in 299 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ITD View Post
If they can't handle public criticism they should not be in public office, the selectmen should have given him his 5 minutes, he probably would have gone home satisfied, the selectmen would have forgotten about it in about 10 minutes and it would have been over. Instead, they need to exert their authority and make mountain out of molehill. The town will end up paying for this, it should in my opinion.
In normal circumstances, most would agree. But in this case, this is a "citizen" who has been continually disruptive, refuses to conform to Robert's Rules and other norms of public behavior in meetings, and is preventing the meeting from proceeding.

At some point it stops being free speech and just becomes obnoxious.
Merrymeeting is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to Merrymeeting For This Useful Post:
DRH (02-23-2015), Ropetow (03-07-2015), Rusty (02-23-2015), upthesaukee (02-23-2015)
Old 02-23-2015, 09:35 PM   #9
TMI Guy
Senior Member
 
TMI Guy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Midcoast Maine & Sanbornton
Posts: 348
Thanks: 3
Thanked 149 Times in 73 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merrymeeting View Post
In normal circumstances, most would agree. But in this case, this is a "citizen" who has been continually disruptive, refuses to conform to Robert's Rules and other norms of public behavior in meetings, and is preventing the meeting from proceeding.

At some point it stops being free speech and just becomes obnoxious.
Speech can be both obnoxious and protected by the First Amendment. It's not an either/or proposition. If everyone in government agreed with what everyone else said, we wouldn't need a Constitutional amendment protecting speech.

I don't know how it works in Alton, but generally when citizens at a Selectmen's meeting get a chance to address the board, the rules are that they have a set time and that whatever is said stays within the bounds of decorum. There are no Roberts Rules involved - no one is making a motion or taking a vote. Based on what was contained in the editorial, it doesn't sound like any rules were broken, just some thin-skinned public officials got their feathers ruffled and overreacted.
TMI Guy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-23-2015, 10:21 PM   #10
Woodsy
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Weirs Beach
Posts: 1,576
Thanks: 45
Thanked 669 Times in 274 Posts
Default

The 1st Amendment to the Constitution is not up for debate...

If the meeting rules of the Alton Selectmen are such that John Q. Public gets 5 minutes to speak.... then the Selectmen have to abide by those rules. They are Public Servants and as such public scrutiny & criticism is part of the job.

Too bad if they didn't like what he had to say... I say we should be happy for the people like Mr. Clay who go to these meetings and voice their opinion. Too many people nowadays just don't care....

Woodsy
__________________
The only way to eliminate ignorant behavior is through education. You can't fix stupid.
Woodsy is online now   Reply With Quote
The Following 11 Users Say Thank You to Woodsy For This Useful Post:
BroadHopper (02-24-2015), CaptT820 (03-05-2015), Grandpa Redneck (02-24-2015), granitebox (02-24-2015), Jersey Ed (02-24-2015), Marauder (03-01-2015), Resident 2B (02-25-2015), riverat (02-26-2015), SAMIAM (02-26-2015), tis (02-24-2015), wynndog (02-24-2015)
Old 02-24-2015, 06:35 AM   #11
secondcurve
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 2,014
Thanks: 1,103
Thanked 527 Times in 268 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Merrymeeting View Post
In normal circumstances, most would agree. But in this case, this is a "citizen" who has been continually disruptive, refuses to conform to Robert's Rules and other norms of public behavior in meetings, and is preventing the meeting from proceeding.

At some point it stops being free speech and just becomes obnoxious.
I have met this fellow. As we all have, I'm sure. I am certain that most Alton residents would agree his actions are counter productive. However, rather than let the gentlemen speak his mind for 5-minutes and further prove he is an idiot the selectmen took it upon themselves to prove they are idiots. There is a time and a place to call the police and this wasn't one of them.
secondcurve is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to secondcurve For This Useful Post:
ITD (02-24-2015), jetlag100 (02-25-2015), Natt (02-24-2015), wifi (02-24-2015)
Old 02-24-2015, 07:30 AM   #12
Merrymeeting
Senior Member
 
Merrymeeting's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Merrymeeting Lake, New Durham
Posts: 1,991
Thanks: 238
Thanked 684 Times in 299 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by secondcurve View Post
I have met this fellow. As we all have, I'm sure. I am certain that most Alton residents would agree his actions are counter productive. However, rather than let the gentlemen speak his mind for 5-minutes and further prove he is an idiot the selectmen took it upon themselves to prove they are idiots. There is a time and a place to call the police and this wasn't one of them.
Thanks secondcurve. I was hoping to hear from someone with first (or second) hand experience here.

The impression I was left with after reading about this is that the citizen WAS given his 5 minutes, and then refused to stop when his time was up. I stand corrected and agree he should have been given his time.
Merrymeeting is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Merrymeeting For This Useful Post:
secondcurve (02-24-2015)
Old 02-24-2015, 08:16 AM   #13
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

Below is the Board Policy Public Participation at Meetings

Question: Did the citizen break any of the rules in paragraph 3 ?

TOWN OF ALTON

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION AT BOARD MEETINGS

The primary purpose of the Board of Selectmen’s meetings is to conduct the business of the Town. The Board encourages residents to attend Board meetings so that they may become acquainted with the operation and programs of the Town. All official meetings of the Board shall be open to the press and the public. However, the Board reserves the right to meet and to adjourn or recess a meeting at any time. The Board also reserves the right to enter non-public session at any time, in accordance with the provisions of RSA 91-A:3.

Public participation in the Board’s regular meetings is a privilege that the Board has adopted in order to assure that persons who wish to appear before the Board and bring matters to its attention may be heard. At the same time, in order to assure that it may conduct its meetings properly and efficiently, the Board adopts as policy the following procedures and rules pertaining to public participation at Board meetings:

1. At regularly scheduled Board meetings, the agenda will reflect two (2) times during the meeting that allows for public input. Speakers will be allotted five (5) minutes per person unless extended by approval of the Board.
2. Complaints regarding individual employees, other individuals and/or any matter that may, in the opinion of the Board infringe on another persons rights of privacy will not be allowed, such matters must be directed to the Town Administrator during normal business hours at Town Hall.
3. When addressing the Board, all speakers are to conduct themselves in a civil manner. Obscene, libelous, defamatory or violent statements will be considered out of order and will not be tolerated. The Board Chair may terminate the speaker’s privilege to address the Board if the speaker does not follow these rules of order.
4. If a speaker does not follow these rules after being warned to do so by the Board Chair they may be removed from the meeting. Persistent violations of these rules may result in loss of the privilege to address the Board.

Purpose:

The purpose of this policy is to provide the Board with an opportunity to receive directly from citizens any concerns, desires, or hopes they may have for the community.

Procedure:

A. Persons wishing to be heard must state their name(s), and address and state the issue(s) they wish to be heard on.
B. Persons should try to speak directly to the issue, as briefly—and fully—as possible.
C. Persons should try to be specific about what they want acted upon -–if that is the case—by the Board.
Ground Rules:

A. The Chairman of the Board conducts public input.
B. The Chairman indicates how much time will be allowed for public input.
C. The Chairman will call on those wishing to be heard.
D. No discussion on individual personalities (good or bad) is permissible in public session.
E.The Board will make no decisions during Public Input.
F. Any person whose conduct is disruptive or disorderly will be ordered to cease and desist from such behavior. Should their behavior continue after due warning, they will be removed from the meeting room.

Adopted this 14th day of January, 2015, by the Alton Board of Selectmen


R. Loring Carr, Chairman
Marc DeCoff, Vice Chairman
Cydney Johnson, Selectman
Lou LaCourse, Selectman
David Hussey, Selectman
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Rusty For This Useful Post:
DRH (02-24-2015), upthesaukee (02-24-2015)
Old 02-24-2015, 08:47 AM   #14
upthesaukee
Senior Member
 
upthesaukee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Alton Bay
Posts: 4,690
Thanks: 1,404
Thanked 1,423 Times in 772 Posts
Default From the Union Leader:

http://www.unionleader.com/article/2...0606/150229668
__________________
I Live Here... I am always UPTHESAUKEE !!!!
upthesaukee is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to upthesaukee For This Useful Post:
Rusty (02-24-2015)
Old 02-24-2015, 09:47 AM   #15
fatlazyless
Senior Member
 
fatlazyless's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 6,226
Thanks: 192
Thanked 475 Times in 351 Posts
Default

If someone is critical of a selectman in a town meeting, does that make it ok for the selectman to have that person arrested? No way - Jose!

Something like this also recently happened in Gilford, and it actually went to a trial court where the judge said something like "while the defendant may have been rude, he was not breaking any laws, and people do have the right of free expression.....up to an un-determined point."

After what happened in Gilford, I betcha the local Town of Alton prosecutor decides to drop it as not acceptable for prosecution...and respectfully suggests for the selectman to get a grip on himself and what happens at town meetings, and go saw up some firewood for an hour or so to just get over his (the selectman) being disrespected.
__________________
Down & out, livn that Walmart side of the lake!
fatlazyless is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 10:25 AM   #16
BroadHopper
Senior Member
 
BroadHopper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Laconia NH / Bozeman MO
Posts: 4,738
Thanks: 2,262
Thanked 826 Times in 574 Posts
Default Town of Gilford

I think they had a similar incident when a concerned citizen was arrested by the selectmen last year. Higher court overturn the lower court decision. It was a costly battle.
__________________
Someday may never be an actual day.
BroadHopper is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 10:33 AM   #17
Merrymeeting
Senior Member
 
Merrymeeting's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Merrymeeting Lake, New Durham
Posts: 1,991
Thanks: 238
Thanked 684 Times in 299 Posts
Default

The video is here. You can watch and decide for yourself.

http://www.alton.nh.gov/Videos.asp
Merrymeeting is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Merrymeeting For This Useful Post:
Misha888 (03-29-2015)
Old 02-24-2015, 11:08 AM   #18
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by fatlazyless View Post
If someone is critical of a selectman in a town meeting, does that make it ok for the selectman to have that person arrested? No way - Jose!
As I said before: "The selectmen didn't have the citizen arrested, they asked the police chief to remove him. The citizen was told by the chief many times to stop talking and leave the room. The citizen refused to leave and kept talking. The chief had no choice but to arrest him. He would not have been arrested if he would have followed the chiefs instructions."

Watching the video, IMO the citizen made some defamatory remarks against the selectmen.
Definition of defamatory: (of remarks, writing, etc.) damaging the good reputation of someone.
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Rusty For This Useful Post:
VitaBene (02-24-2015)
Old 02-24-2015, 11:54 AM   #19
HellRaZoR004
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Litchfield/Gilford
Posts: 824
Thanks: 230
Thanked 224 Times in 131 Posts
Default

I see a very expensive lawsuit coming. There is absolutely nothing in what he said that was defamatory. They closed down public input, arrested him, and opened public input after he was escorted out of the room. This video shows it all.
HellRaZoR004 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 12:02 PM   #20
AC2717
Senior Member
 
AC2717's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Maynard, MA & Paugus Bay
Posts: 2,101
Thanks: 569
Thanked 246 Times in 178 Posts
Default

my only two cents on this topic
the town police are more in trouble, the selectman have a right to request the police chiefs presence to regulate the person if warranted. Police chief did not have probable cause to request him to stop talking nor probable cause to arrest him
__________________
Capt. of the "No Worries"
AC2717 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 01:04 PM   #21
LIforrelaxin
Senior Member
 
LIforrelaxin's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Long Island, not that one, the one on Winnipesaukee
Posts: 2,195
Thanks: 775
Thanked 622 Times in 335 Posts
Default

Did the man get charged with anything? Or did the Police chief simply take him into custody to remove him?

The board of selectman have the right to ask somebody to leave or have them removed, if that person is interjecting themselves in a disruptive way.

I actually have no problem with what seems to have happened, as long as the person wasn't charged with anything... This person has a track record of disrupting meetings, has been warned time and time again, and was finally dealt with in a way, that will hopefully teach him a lesson.

If he hasn't been charged with anything then there is no "further cost".... he was given a chance to speak, he was rude and orderly, and was removed... I know that some liberal feel good atty. will argue that his basic rights where violated... But where they really???? He brought a timer... come one really??? get the guy some help he probably needs it.... he was purposely trying to bring this on himself... end of story.....
__________________
Life is about how much time you can spend relaxing... I do it on an island that isn't really an island.....

Last edited by LIforrelaxin; 02-24-2015 at 04:57 PM. Reason: spelling and gramer
LIforrelaxin is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to LIforrelaxin For This Useful Post:
DRH (02-24-2015)
Old 02-24-2015, 01:55 PM   #22
DBreskin
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Southern NJ and Wolfeboro NH
Posts: 184
Thanks: 114
Thanked 74 Times in 41 Posts
Default Oxymorons

Although this is not the main topic of this thread, there are several references to the term "libelous..statements" including paragraph 3 of the Alton public participation rules. It is impossible to be libelous while speaking, since by definition libel is written, not spoken. A spoken falsehood would be called slander.
DBreskin is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to DBreskin For This Useful Post:
Rusty (02-24-2015)
Old 02-24-2015, 02:32 PM   #23
PaugusBayFireFighter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 837
Thanks: 361
Thanked 672 Times in 264 Posts
Default

Google the guy arrested. Jeffrey T. Clay. He seems to have a history of this stuff.
PaugusBayFireFighter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 02:56 PM   #24
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

Removed video.
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.

Last edited by Rusty; 04-08-2015 at 02:07 PM.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Rusty For This Useful Post:
riverat (02-26-2015)
Old 02-24-2015, 03:03 PM   #25
SIKSUKR
Senior Member
 
SIKSUKR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 5,058
Thanks: 215
Thanked 893 Times in 505 Posts
Default

Looks like a troublemaker to me.Has been escorted out of previous meetings 3 times.Had run-ins at with Newmarket school officials.
__________________
SIKSUKR
SIKSUKR is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to SIKSUKR For This Useful Post:
Natt (02-25-2015), Slickcraft (02-24-2015)
Old 02-24-2015, 03:33 PM   #26
fatlazyless
Senior Member
 
fatlazyless's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 6,226
Thanks: 192
Thanked 475 Times in 351 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
As I said before: "The selectmen didn't have the citizen arrested, they asked the police chief to remove him.
.....duh....oopsie-doopsie.....say.....maybe I'm just not the britest bulb on the tree???
__________________
Down & out, livn that Walmart side of the lake!
fatlazyless is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 04:21 PM   #27
tis
Senior Member
 
tis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,529
Thanks: 446
Thanked 791 Times in 544 Posts
Default

Obviously he has a beef. I wonder what it is. He should have said something about that rather than just repeating that they should resign. It made him look rather ridiculous.
tis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 07:06 PM   #28
secondcurve
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 2,014
Thanks: 1,103
Thanked 527 Times in 268 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by SIKSUKR View Post
Looks like a troublemaker to me.Has been escorted out of previous meetings 3 times.Had run-ins at with Newmarket school officials.
No doubt he is a trouble maker. I think if they simply had allowed him to ramble on for 5-minutes it would have been better for all involved. Calling the officer into the room and having him watch the gentlemen while he got his 5-minutes of time would have been a better intermediate step.

Does anyone know what caused the man to be so obsessed with having the selectman resign? What is his issue?
secondcurve is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to secondcurve For This Useful Post:
Merrymeeting (02-24-2015)
Old 02-24-2015, 07:08 PM   #29
secondcurve
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 2,014
Thanks: 1,103
Thanked 527 Times in 268 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
Below is the Board Policy Public Participation at Meetings

Question: Did the citizen break any of the rules in paragraph 3 ?

TOWN OF ALTON

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION AT BOARD MEETINGS

The primary purpose of the Board of Selectmen’s meetings is to conduct the business of the Town. The Board encourages residents to attend Board meetings so that they may become acquainted with the operation and programs of the Town. All official meetings of the Board shall be open to the press and the public. However, the Board reserves the right to meet and to adjourn or recess a meeting at any time. The Board also reserves the right to enter non-public session at any time, in accordance with the provisions of RSA 91-A:3.

Public participation in the Board’s regular meetings is a privilege that the Board has adopted in order to assure that persons who wish to appear before the Board and bring matters to its attention may be heard. At the same time, in order to assure that it may conduct its meetings properly and efficiently, the Board adopts as policy the following procedures and rules pertaining to public participation at Board meetings:

1. At regularly scheduled Board meetings, the agenda will reflect two (2) times during the meeting that allows for public input. Speakers will be allotted five (5) minutes per person unless extended by approval of the Board.
2. Complaints regarding individual employees, other individuals and/or any matter that may, in the opinion of the Board infringe on another persons rights of privacy will not be allowed, such matters must be directed to the Town Administrator during normal business hours at Town Hall.
3. When addressing the Board, all speakers are to conduct themselves in a civil manner. Obscene, libelous, defamatory or violent statements will be considered out of order and will not be tolerated. The Board Chair may terminate the speaker’s privilege to address the Board if the speaker does not follow these rules of order.
4. If a speaker does not follow these rules after being warned to do so by the Board Chair they may be removed from the meeting. Persistent violations of these rules may result in loss of the privilege to address the Board.

Purpose:

The purpose of this policy is to provide the Board with an opportunity to receive directly from citizens any concerns, desires, or hopes they may have for the community.

Procedure:

A. Persons wishing to be heard must state their name(s), and address and state the issue(s) they wish to be heard on.
B. Persons should try to speak directly to the issue, as briefly—and fully—as possible.
C. Persons should try to be specific about what they want acted upon -–if that is the case—by the Board.
Ground Rules:

A. The Chairman of the Board conducts public input.
B. The Chairman indicates how much time will be allowed for public input.
C. The Chairman will call on those wishing to be heard.
D. No discussion on individual personalities (good or bad) is permissible in public session.
E.The Board will make no decisions during Public Input.
F. Any person whose conduct is disruptive or disorderly will be ordered to cease and desist from such behavior. Should their behavior continue after due warning, they will be removed from the meeting room.

Adopted this 14th day of January, 2015, by the Alton Board of Selectmen


R. Loring Carr, Chairman
Marc DeCoff, Vice Chairman
Cydney Johnson, Selectman
Lou LaCourse, Selectman
David Hussey, Selectman
Rusty: As senseless as this guy is, I don't think he met the criteria that you have highlighted.
secondcurve is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 07:31 PM   #30
8gv
Senior Member
 
8gv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,059
Thanks: 20
Thanked 311 Times in 187 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by secondcurve View Post
Rusty: As senseless as this guy is, I don't think he met the criteria that you have highlighted.
I concur.

Sometimes you have to just count to 100 (10,000?) and play the long game.

Given more time, he may have acted in a way more within the definition.

I suspect he will become more trouble for the board than they could ever have imagined.
8gv is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 07:38 PM   #31
Just Sold
Senior Member
 
Just Sold's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Suncook, NH, but at The Lake at Heart
Posts: 2,599
Thanks: 1,057
Thanked 430 Times in 207 Posts
Default

I think that the Selectmen should have let him ramble on for his 5 minutes and let it go at that.
I lived in Atkinson, NH in the 90's and worked for the town as a camera person recording the Selectman's meetings. We had a long time resident who would make their rather odd statements/suggestions to the Selectmen that normally had nothing to do with the actual meeting or the current agenda pretty regularly. They were allowed to do this and would even be thanked by the Selectmen and then they would continue with their meeting. The resident would then be quiet for the rest of the meeting.
I think the way Atkinson handled its resident is what the Alton Selectmen should have done.
__________________
Just Sold
At the lake the stress of daily life just melts away. Pro Re Nata
Just Sold is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2015, 08:21 PM   #32
Coolbreeze
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 331
Thanks: 0
Thanked 50 Times in 25 Posts
Default

I think the selection were facing a person who was clearly testing the system. There was a clear history of no love between the selection and this guy. It was if they were ready to trap this guy, the closest selection to the door went for help before the guy really started his talk. The guy wasn't even yelling in a tantrum. He was level headed the entire time. A simple resolution would be to have just give him his 5 minutes and go after him after reviewing the video with a attorney. Their actions regardless of the person being a nuisance to them or a true American expressing his right to speak should not have been stopped based on what I heard. The Police chief could have caused an explosive situation with someone who could have been violent. There was no need for his involvement. Cell phone calling for assistance???? How about a radio. Did he even have any protection if this guy turned out to have a weapon????? This is the stuff stuff where you see people go postal. I am sad for the people of Alton. I did not hear anything offensive from him; I hear similar remarks about our current federal leaders and see nobody being arrested for it. What is different here than everywhere else.
Coolbreeze is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2015, 06:09 AM   #33
Kamper
Senior Member
 
Kamper's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Thornton's Ferry
Posts: 1,193
Thanks: 65
Thanked 140 Times in 104 Posts
Default

As I understand it, "Libel" is expressing something as fact, which is damaging to a reputation when the speaker knows it is a false statement.

A period of 'commentary' infers that facts and opinions may be expressed. It can be hard to tell the difference sometimes which is why libel and slander can be hard to prove.

That's all I think I know about that,
Kamper is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2015, 08:02 AM   #34
dave603
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Nashua/Winnisquam
Posts: 280
Thanks: 101
Thanked 96 Times in 49 Posts
Default Paragraph 3

"3. When addressing the Board, all speakers are to conduct themselves in a civil manner. Obscene, libelous, defamatory or violent statements will be considered out of order and will not be tolerated. The Board Chair may terminate the speaker’s privilege to address the Board if the speaker does not follow these rules of order."

These rules seem to have been re-written this year.
I don't know if that was in there before or not, but it's
almost like they had this guy in mind when they wrote them.
dave603 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2015, 08:17 AM   #35
tis
Senior Member
 
tis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,529
Thanks: 446
Thanked 791 Times in 544 Posts
Default

I wouldn't consider asking someone to resign or even telling them they should resign any of those things would you?
tis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2015, 08:26 AM   #36
PaugusBayFireFighter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 837
Thanks: 361
Thanked 672 Times in 264 Posts
Default Claiming police injured him now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dave603 View Post
These rules seem to have been re-written this year.
I don't know if that was in there before or not, but it's
almost like they had this guy in mind when they wrote them.
I think you may be right, according to his blog:

In an effort to squelch my free speech rights whereby I attempt to hold the BOS accountable during public input time at BOS meetings for their willful violations of the peoples' rights, the BOS stopped airing public meetings on public TV, instituted a policy regarding pubic input (where none existed prior) limiting public input to five minutes and which dis-allows so called “personal attacks.”

Now he claims that he was hurt during the arrest.

ALTON — Right to Know advocate Jeffrey Clay said Monday that Alton Police Chief Ryan Heath physically hurt him when he was arrested for disorderly conduct at a board of selectmen's meeting on Feb. 3.

Alton's Chief of Police threw my left arm up behind my back, causing severe pain,” Clay said.
PaugusBayFireFighter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2015, 08:33 AM   #37
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by dave603 View Post
"3. When addressing the Board, all speakers are to conduct themselves in a civil manner. Obscene, libelous, defamatory or violent statements will be considered out of order and will not be tolerated. The Board Chair may terminate the speaker’s privilege to address the Board if the speaker does not follow these rules of order."

These rules seem to have been re-written this year.
I don't know if that was in there before or not, but it's
almost like they had this guy in mind when they wrote them.

That's the way I understand it. The selectboard revised the policy and stopped showing live televised meetings. This aggravated Clay and now he wants them to pack their bags and go to...wherever??

Here is an article that is in the fosters this morning:
Clay claims he was hurt when arrested by police chief

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

ALTON — Right to Know advocate Jeffrey Clay said Monday that Alton Police Chief Ryan Heath physically hurt him when he was arrested for disorderly conduct at a board of selectmen's meeting on Feb. 3.

Clay, who has sued the Dover School Board for allegedly violating New Hampshire's laws about public meetings, was arrested by Heath after he asked members of Alton's board of selectmen to resign, during a public forum at their meeting, earlier this month.

The entire incident was captured by a local cable access television channel and posted on fosters.com. It shows that Clay sat down before the board, during the public forum, and said, “Every time I show up here, it is my most fervent hope that I am going to find that you folks have resigned. But you continue to show an unwillingness to step up to the plate and take responsibility for your poor actions as selectmen and resign. I am asking you to do that now.”

One of the board members said, “This is character assassination.”

Board Chair R. Loring Carr asked for two points of order as Clay continued to talk about the selectmen's actions. Carr asked his fellow board members if they felt Clay's statements were libelous and inflammatory.

Less than two minutes into Clay's statements, the board voted in favor of closing down their public forum because of the comments.
That did not stop Clay from speaking. He remained in his chair and started reading definitions of integrity, honesty and character.
That is when Carr told Clay, “You are done.”

Heath, who was in the audience, was asked to address the issue. He moved a set of chairs next to where Clay was sitting and approached him.
“You want to take your hands off me, please?” Clay asked Heath.

When Heath did not back away, Clay said again, “Take your hands off me, please.”
Heath told Clay that he had been asked to leave. Clay asked Heath if he was under arrest. Heath replied that he would be if Clay did not comply with his orders.

Clay again started to speak. Heath reached into his pocket, pulled out a cell phone and called for police back up.
After Clay finished reciting the definition of audacity, which means boldness or daring, especially with confident or arrogant disregard for personal safety, conventional thought, or other restrictions, Carr warned Clay for a third time.

Heath placed Clay under arrest. As he did, he pulled on Clay's left arm and led him from the room with that arm behind his back. That is when Clay says he was physically injured.

“Alton's Chief of Police threw my left arm up behind my back, causing severe pain,” Clay said in a letter sent to Foster's editors on Monday.
Clay said in the letter that he takes no pride in being arrested, but he takes “great pride” in the First Amendment and freedom of speech, and in citizens' duties to “hold public officials accountable when they violate laws and people's trust.”

“This is exactly what I was doing when I was arrested,” Clay said.

Lt. Todd MacDougall of the Alton Police Department said Tuesday that Clay was charged with two Class B misdemeanor counts of disorderly conduct. These charges carry a fine as their maximum penalty.

Clay vowed to fight the charges against him.
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2015, 09:04 AM   #38
mcdude
Senior Member
 
mcdude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Rock Haven Lake - West Newfield, ME
Posts: 5,081
Thanks: 310
Thanked 723 Times in 348 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. V View Post
I hope the guy who was arrested has the sense to talk to a lawyer about this.

*I smell a lawsuit*
you mean like this?

Quote:
Parent sues officer over arrest at school board meeting

GILFORD — The man who objected to one of his 9th grade daughter's reading assignments at a School Board meeting last year is suing the local police lieutenant who arrested him and removed him from the meeting.
William Baer has filed a suit in the United States District Court for the District of New Hampshire seeking damages from Lt. James Leach for allegedly violating his Fourth and Fourteenth Amendment rights.
"Had (Leach) of the Gilford Police Department not falsely arrested the plaintiff, without a warrant or probable cause, for exercising his right to free speech, the plaintiff would have been free from seizure, arrest, and criminal charges," wrote Concord attorney Charles Douglas in his pleading.
Baer was charged with three criminal complaints of disorderly conduct under three separate sections of the disorderly conduct law.
After a number of months, 4th Circuit Court, Laconia Division Judge Jim Carroll dismissed the charges against Baer saying, among other things, that "the court questions the constitutionality of the state's action in the sequence as memorialized by the deposition."
Because of his arrest, Baer is seeking damages because he was humiliated in front of a room filled with people and the videos went viral. A YouTube video of the incident was viewed by at least one million times.
In addition, Baer's license to carry a concealed weapon in Maine was delayed and he was temporarily held at the Canadian border because of the arrest.
Baer's children attend Gilford Schools and he said they have suffered emotional repercussions as a result of his father's public arrest.
He is seeking a unknown amount of financial compensation and legal fees.
At a regularly scheduled Gilford School Board meeting on May 5, 2014 Baer and a number of other residents attending the meeting to voice their opinions on a reading assignment.
In Baer's opinion, the book, "Nineteen Minutes" by Jody Picoult, contained a sexually explicit section that he believed was inappropriate for a ninth grader. He had made his objections known through various outlets and because of the controversy, the meeting was packed with Baer supporters and detractors. At least three newspapers reporters were there as were two people operating video cameras.
Chair Sue Allen opened public comment and limited each speaker to two minutes and a single opportunity to speak. Leach was at the meeting, in uniform and initially standing off to one side.
Baer spoke for at least two minutes and, according to the lawsuit, was told by resident Joe Wernig that his time had ended. Baer finished his thought and sat down. Wernig lives in Gilford and is an educator in the Shaker Regional School District.
Two others spoke and were followed by Wernig who said Baer are others were trying to dictate what his kids can and cannot read. Without being recognized to speak again, Baer loudly reacted that Wernig's statement was ridiculous and was told by Allen to respect other speakers. But Baer kept talking.
After a nod from Allen and Superintendent Kent Hemingway, Leach approached Baer and told him he was being asked to leave. He gave him no prior warning and Baer said, "I guess you're gonna have to arrest me."
Leach removed Baer by grabbing his wrist and leading him from the meeting room. He was handcuffed outside the glass-walled room and arrested.
While the suit is filed against Leach as an individual, according to state law he is indemnified by state law — meaning he is not personally responsible for any financial awards should Baer prevail, but the town of Gilford is.
When contacted yesterday, Leach said he was not aware of the suit
__________________

mcdude is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2015, 09:58 AM   #39
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

"Clay stands by his statements, and has hired Sisti, who represented Pamela Smart in 1991 and several months ago successfully defended Gilford parent Billy Baer, winning his case against the Gilford police department after Baer was arrested for protesting a Gilford school’s choice of reading assignments for his daughter.A judge found Baer’s conduct was “impolite but not criminal.” Clay says his case will have a similar outcome."

Here is the article: Sisti
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2015, 10:57 AM   #40
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 2,110
Thanks: 583
Thanked 572 Times in 336 Posts
Default

I appreciate Clay's defense of the First Amendment--where I teach, we are seeing an issue with transparency in local government which might destroy the opportunity for a new school--but I also believe there needs to be a system to keep extremists (inexact word choice, but you get it) in check.
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2015, 11:08 AM   #41
Mr. V
Senior Member
 
Mr. V's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: the left coast (Portland)and West Alton
Posts: 743
Thanks: 12
Thanked 79 Times in 56 Posts
Default

Politicians must be thick skinned.

One price they pay for the "power" which their political position affords them is the necessity to listen to the concerns and grievances of their constituents, who are given very wide latitude when airing them, due to "Freedom of Speech."

The concern of course is: when you act to abridge or curtail free speech, where do you draw the line?
Mr. V is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2015, 12:30 PM   #42
Donzi Minx
Senior Member
 
Donzi Minx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Melrose, Mass.
Posts: 136
Thanks: 0
Thanked 117 Times in 31 Posts
Smile Alton Tries to Silence its Citizens

I thought this only happened in Mass.
As a Public Servant for the City of Beverly MA I have been using Armor All on my skin for years. You do receive your fair share of abuse from the constituents it goes with the job.
Donzi Minx is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-26-2015, 07:51 AM   #43
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default Now the fun begins!

Clay to file civil suit against Alton officials after his arrest


ALTON — Right to Know advocate Jeffrey Clay plans to file a civil law suit against the town of Alton’s police department and the Board of Selectmen, after he was arrested for disorderly conduct, during a public forum, Feb. 3.

Clay said on Wednesday that the board had the chief of police, or one of his officers, sitting behind him during three board meetings before his arrest date. Clay said he was informed that the board was trying to intimidate him, and make him fearful of speaking his mind.

Clay has recently been calling for all of the board’s members to resign, claiming that they have been violating the state’s Right to Know laws.

“I have repeatedly spoken to the board, regarding this issue, over the past several months in an attempt to resolve the issues without having to take them to court. Their response to my concerns, however, was silence. No discussion. No taking responsibility for their actions,” Clay said.

Clay said instead of correcting their violations, board members continued to commit them.



“That is why I asked them to resign,” Clay said. “My point was, if you are unwilling to follow the law, and respect the rights of the citizens, then they should resign.”

Police Chief Ryan Heath, who arrested Clay, has a different view on the incidents leading up to his arrest. Heath said that Clay has a script that he is reading from when he approaches the board, during their meetings. As the script continues, Clay makes personal attacks on a family member of one of the people who sits on the board.

“It is not relevant to any business being talked about,” Heath said. “He is reading from the same script about Right to Know laws, but it doesn’t specify any incident. He says, ‘You guys violated the Right to Know laws.’ Well then, when, and how?”

Heath said Clay, who was removed from board meetings twice before his arrest on Feb. 3, approached the school board with the same accusations before waging his attacks on the board of selectmen. Heath said that, according to Clay, every public official in Alton violates the Right to Know laws.



Heath said that the selectmen have adopted a series of rules for public participation, which prohibits defamatory statements, because of Clay’s scripted accusations.

As for claims that he hurt Clay while putting him under arrest, Heath said Clay is “completely embellishing.”

When removing Clay from the meeting room, he placed his left arm behind his back and walked behind him into an outside hallway, where he let Clay go until back up officers arrived.

“It’s called the escort position,” Heath said. “That’s what they teach at the police academy. There was no pressure on his arm.”

Clay said on Wednesday that his arm and shoulder are still sore, but he will not be seeking medical attention for the pain. He added that “psychologically, the entire process has been traumatizing.”

Mark Sisti of Sisti Law Offices in Chichester said he will be representing Clay as he defends himself against the two Class B misdemeanor charges against him. Sisti is also expected to file the civil suit on Clay’s behalf.



Sisti said what he saw in the video of Clay’s arrest was appalling. He intends to defend the charges against Clay by using the First Amendment, and his client’s right to free speech.

Clay, who regularly contributes letters to the editor at Foster’s Daily Democrat, has also filed lawsuits against Dover’s school board, claiming a violation of the state’s laws regarding public meetings.
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-26-2015, 08:21 AM   #44
SAMIAM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Moultonborough
Posts: 2,389
Thanks: 138
Thanked 951 Times in 354 Posts
Default

Shows the arrogance of many public officials. A better choice would have been to let him complete his statement, thank him for his contribution....even respond to points of disagreement and continue the meeting.
SAMIAM is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to SAMIAM For This Useful Post:
Charlie T (02-28-2015)
Old 02-26-2015, 08:45 AM   #45
PaugusBayFireFighter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 837
Thanks: 361
Thanked 672 Times in 264 Posts
Default Not surprised at all...any arrest would have resulted in injury, imo

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post

As for claims that he hurt Clay while putting him under arrest, Heath said Clay is “completely embellishing.”

When removing Clay from the meeting room, he placed his left arm behind his back and walked behind him into an outside hallway, where he let Clay go until back up officers arrived.

“It’s called the escort position,” Heath said. “That’s what they teach at the police academy. There was no pressure on his arm.”

Clay said on Wednesday that his arm and shoulder are still sore, but he will not be seeking medical attention for the pain. He added that “psychologically, the entire process has been traumatizing.”
In my humble opinion, this guy is trouble. Good luck Alton.
PaugusBayFireFighter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-26-2015, 09:31 AM   #46
8gv
Senior Member
 
8gv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,059
Thanks: 20
Thanked 311 Times in 187 Posts
Default

Prior to my retirement I owned a business that had many "interesting" customers. There were frequent "interesting" interactions between my employees and the customers.

Inappropriate reactions on the part of my employees caused quite a few messes over the years. This caused me to preach the following:

"Let's not be shocked by the things people do. Let's just consider what the APPROPRIATE RESPONSE should be."

Whether it was somewhat planned or just fate, the board seems to have shot itself in the foot and given Clay the upper hand.
8gv is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-26-2015, 11:59 AM   #47
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 2,110
Thanks: 583
Thanked 572 Times in 336 Posts
Default

I can't stand the title of this thread.
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-26-2015, 04:30 PM   #48
MDoug
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 253
Thanks: 90
Thanked 29 Times in 26 Posts
Default Live Free or Die

This thread somehow reminds of the Ward Bird incident.

I still see a sign or two on back roads saying, "Free Ward Bird."
MDoug is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-27-2015, 08:47 AM   #49
Tired of Waiting
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 519
Thanks: 111
Thanked 258 Times in 107 Posts
Default Why

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
I can't stand the title of this thread.
Why?

ToW
Tired of Waiting is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-27-2015, 12:25 PM   #50
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 2,110
Thanks: 583
Thanked 572 Times in 336 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired of Waiting View Post
Why?

ToW
Because it is completely biased, even though it appears that the selectmen had been proactive at preventing what appears to me is abuse of a system.
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-27-2015, 12:31 PM   #51
DEJ
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 310
Thanks: 236
Thanked 174 Times in 76 Posts
Default

If you want to see/watch biased, tune into the evening news on most any channel. IMO the title of this thread is accurate.
DEJ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-27-2015, 01:44 PM   #52
SAMIAM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Moultonborough
Posts: 2,389
Thanks: 138
Thanked 951 Times in 354 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
Because it is completely biased, even though it appears that the selectmen had been proactive at preventing what appears to me is abuse of a system.
Abuse of the system was not letting him speak.They were clearly waiting to jump on him the minute he got started.Ranting about resigning is really not slanderous and I think they won't do well in court.
SAMIAM is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to SAMIAM For This Useful Post:
nicole (03-01-2015)
Old 02-27-2015, 01:57 PM   #53
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

Clay has been on a rampage for a few years now. Here is a good article written about him:

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

As I have read the numerous letters from Jeffrey T. Clay about facilities issues faced by the Newmarket School District, I have wondered why he is so concerned about a school system 35 miles and two counties away from where he lives in Alton. I couldn't imagine why he should be so interested in what happens in Newmarket.

After all, since I live and pay taxes in Durham, I have considered the problem faced by Newmarket Junior/Senior High School to be none of my business. However, since some of Mr. Clay's recent commentary has thrown the Oyster River Cooperative School District into the public discussion, the situation is now the business of Oyster River taxpayers, of which I am one. Additionally, Mr. Clay has chosen to comment on the affairs of the Rochester and Barrington School Districts — two more districts in which he neither resides nor votes.

Mr. Clay's frequent letters and (lately) community commentaries have attacked Newmarket school officials and other public figures with a vicious maze of charges, backed up by a baffling flood of information comprised of few facts, but a boatload of fiction. He is depending on the likelihood that readers will not have the time to track down the accuracy of his charges. He is probably correct to assume that most readers will have neither the time nor the energy to fact-check his numbers and dates and blustering conspiracy theories. So for me, the issue comes down to one crucial fact. The New Hampshire State Fire Marshall's Office has set a deadline for the Newmarket School District: the existing Newmarket Junior/Senior High School will not be allowed to open for the 2015 school year without substantial (and costly) renovation. That means that if Newmarket school officials put students in that building — as is — in September of 2015, they will be in violation of state law. The decision about whether to renovate, build a new school, or send students to another town's school is a decision for Newmarket voters to make. It is not up to Mr. Clay.



So why, as a resident of Alton, does he care?

As it turns out, Mr. Clay is a former Newmarket teacher, and he has an ax to grind. A simple Google search will turn up the public record regarding Mr. Clay's departure from Newmarket, along with his subsequent attempts to be reinstated. According to these public records, Mr. Clay was dismissed from his teaching position for multiple reasons.

You can find online: 1) several newspaper articles regarding his situation; 2) rulings by the NH Public Employee Labor Relations Board upholding the dismissal and then confirming the PELRB's own decision, followed by; 3) the NH Supreme Court's upholding of the PELRB ruling.

Mr. Clay has had his fifteen minutes of fame. Readers of his letters would do well to filter his invective — his wild, inaccurate charges and flat-out fantasies — through the lens of his grudge against the Newmarket School District, which, as affirmed by the PELRB and the NH Supreme Court, acted well within its rights to terminate Mr. Clay's employment.



And, in the interest of disclosure, I was myself a teacher for 31 years, most of that time at the Oyster River Middle School, so I am familiar with the job requirements of teachers, teacher contracts, teachers' unions, and the responsibilities of school administrators.

John Parsons

Durham

http://www.fosters.com/apps/pbcs.dll...19831/0/SEARCH
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-27-2015, 04:25 PM   #54
LIforrelaxin
Senior Member
 
LIforrelaxin's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Long Island, not that one, the one on Winnipesaukee
Posts: 2,195
Thanks: 775
Thanked 622 Times in 335 Posts
Default

I did a quick search on Jeffery T. Clay.... he has got a history... The clip in this thread would lead one to believe that the board acted to quickly.... However I think there is more to this story then anyone knows....

In short don't judge the Alton Board to quickly... Nor for that matter Jeffery Clay, and this situation....

What I can tell you from the clip however is that Jeffery Clay was asked repeatedly to stop, and stand down.. By both the Board of Selectmen, and by the police officer...

They had the justification to remove him for not cooperating and that is the bottom line....

He didn't speak directly on any particular issue... Rather he had a general statement that the Board needs to resign....

This is the rule that applies:

2. Complaints regarding individual employees, other individuals and/or any matter that may, in the opinion of the Board infringe on another persons rights of privacy will not be allowed, such matters must be directed to the Town Administrator during normal business hours at Town Hall.

The complaint was about each individual board member and their personal integrity....... Mr. Clay however knew that if he directed his comments at anyone individual this rule would clearly be evoked, so he instead direct his comments at the entire board to skirt this issue...

My big question in this matter, is weather or not someone on the board and Mr. Clay have crossed paths, and that this is all a bit more personal then anyone knows.
__________________
Life is about how much time you can spend relaxing... I do it on an island that isn't really an island.....
LIforrelaxin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-27-2015, 05:42 PM   #55
ITD
Senior Member
 
ITD's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Massachusetts and Moultonboro, NH
Posts: 2,290
Thanks: 334
Thanked 419 Times in 243 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by LIforrelaxin View Post
I did a quick search on Jeffery T. Clay.... he has got a history... The clip in this thread would lead one to believe that the board acted to quickly.... However I think there is more to this story then anyone knows....

In short don't judge the Alton Board to quickly... Nor for that matter Jeffery Clay, and this situation....

What I can tell you from the clip however is that Jeffery Clay was asked repeatedly to stop, and stand down.. By both the Board of Selectmen, and by the police officer...

They had the justification to remove him for not cooperating and that is the bottom line....

He didn't speak directly on any particular issue... Rather he had a general statement that the Board needs to resign....

This is the rule that applies:

2. Complaints regarding individual employees, other individuals and/or any matter that may, in the opinion of the Board infringe on another persons rights of privacy will not be allowed, such matters must be directed to the Town Administrator during normal business hours at Town Hall.

The complaint was about each individual board member and their personal integrity....... Mr. Clay however knew that if he directed his comments at anyone individual this rule would clearly be evoked, so he instead direct his comments at the entire board to skirt this issue...

My big question in this matter, is weather or not someone on the board and Mr. Clay have crossed paths, and that this is all a bit more personal then anyone knows.
5 minutes, they just had to listen for 5 minutes, they are just words, and they weren't even that bad. Government is supposed to serve the people, not the other way around. I'm not a fan of litigation, nor am I a fan of Mr Clay, but in this case, I hope Mr Clay has a big payday.
ITD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-27-2015, 06:05 PM   #56
tbonies
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Meredith, NH. Anchorage
Posts: 79
Thanks: 16
Thanked 17 Times in 11 Posts
Default

This Clay guy sounds like an idiot and got what he deserved.
tbonies is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-27-2015, 06:13 PM   #57
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 2,110
Thanks: 583
Thanked 572 Times in 336 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ITD View Post
I hope Mr Clay has a big payday.
This is what's wrong with America--think about how many problems are a result of an overly litigious society. From what I've seen and read, this guy's an ambulance chaser.
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-27-2015, 08:53 PM   #58
jeffk
Senior Member
 
jeffk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Center Harbor
Posts: 832
Thanks: 140
Thanked 217 Times in 130 Posts
Default

In my opinion it doesn't matter how annoying this guy is or what his past is. This was a time of public comment. It is reasonable to have rules of order and IF he violated them, he could be asked to stop. It is unclear to me that he did violate the rules and even if he did bend them a bit it is not in the interests of a public board to come down on citizens so they should have given him broad leeway. Of course it is up to the board members to make the decision to cut him off and they did. Now they are paying the price for their lack of patience. Was it worth it? They shut him out of his 5 minutes and now the board is going to spend many hours in legal meetings and the town will bear the costs of the legal fight. Was this a winning plan? I'll bet the board members will be cursing their intolerance before too long.

The reason we should tolerate "free speech", even when presented by annoying individuals, is that EVERYONE who speaks in opposition to something strongly supported by someone else is going to be perceived as "annoying". Maybe next year the Alton board will do something that ticks off someone else. That person might rise to speak in opposition and probably become annoying in doing it. There is a time limit and rules to prevent extremely disorderly conduct. Those seem sufficient safeguards to prevent monopoly of the boards time. Let the fools have their few minutes.
jeffk is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 7 Users Say Thank You to jeffk For This Useful Post:
christo1 (02-28-2015), DEJ (02-28-2015), riverat (03-01-2015), Seaplane Pilot (02-28-2015), secondcurve (02-27-2015), Tired of Waiting (02-28-2015), wifi (02-28-2015)
Old 02-27-2015, 09:36 PM   #59
secondcurve
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 2,014
Thanks: 1,103
Thanked 527 Times in 268 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffk View Post
In my opinion it doesn't matter how annoying this guy is or what his past is. This was a time of public comment. It is reasonable to have rules of order and IF he violated them, he could be asked to stop. It is unclear to me that he did violate the rules and even if he did bend them a bit it is not in the interests of a public board to come down on citizens so they should have given him broad leeway. Of course it is up to the board members to make the decision to cut him off and they did. Now they are paying the price for their lack of patience. Was it worth it? They shut him out of his 5 minutes and now the board is going to spend many hours in legal meetings and the town will bear the costs of the legal fight. Was this a winning plan? I'll bet the board members will be cursing their intolerance before too long.

The reason we should tolerate "free speech", even when presented by annoying individuals, is that EVERYONE who speaks in opposition to something strongly supported by someone else is going to be perceived as "annoying". Maybe next year the Alton board will do something that ticks off someone else. That person might rise to speak in opposition and probably become annoying in doing it. There is a time limit and rules to prevent extremely disorderly conduct. Those seem sufficient safeguards to prevent monopoly of the boards time. Let the fools have their few minutes.
Jeff: you are a bright guy. Thanks for summing this up nicely.
secondcurve is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 06:02 AM   #60
Seaplane Pilot
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 850
Thanks: 300
Thanked 467 Times in 174 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkxingu View Post
This is what's wrong with America--think about how many problems are a result of an overly litigious society. From what I've seen and read, this guy's an ambulance chaser.
That's seems a.bit defamatory.
Seaplane Pilot is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Seaplane Pilot For This Useful Post:
DEJ (02-28-2015)
Old 02-28-2015, 06:28 AM   #61
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 2,110
Thanks: 583
Thanked 572 Times in 336 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seaplane Pilot View Post
That's seems a.bit defamatory.
I'm not sure if you misunderstood whom I was referring to as an ambulance chaser, but in either case there would be no reputation to be hurt and, therefore, not defamation.

However, if that was a subtle joke, bravo--subtlety is so rare these days, I assume it doesn't exist online.
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 07:39 AM   #62
tis
Senior Member
 
tis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,529
Thanks: 446
Thanked 791 Times in 544 Posts
Default

I agree with you jeffk EXCEPT that I doubt if the Selectmen will care if they have to spend a lot of money on legal fees. It's not their money they are wasting. Now if it was THEIR money it might be a different story------
tis is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 09:52 AM   #63
Tired of Waiting
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 519
Thanks: 111
Thanked 258 Times in 107 Posts
Default Time to change NH License plate

And remove the "Live Free or Die" !!!

I cannot believe some of the posts in this thread where the poster is willing to take "Free Speech, Redress of Government and others" away from a person just because they are a nut job and a thorn in the sides of some.

Here is a man who was RECOGNIZED by the board of selectmen to speak and as soon as he made a statement they, the Board, did not like they shut him down and cut his time off through "USE of FORCE." Are you kidding me!! And some of the posters on this board are OK with this?

I live in a small town that has Selectmen and is run by town meetings. We also have folks who seem to be on the nutty side. But NEVER has the board shut them down for expressing their opinion even if calling for the board to resign. But yes we have had folks removed from select and town meeting for getting unruly. That is defined as using foul language, issuing threats, or refusing to end their talk when time has expired.

I have read the town rules and watched the video and at NO time did the speaker violate the rules or the Constitution. The only violation I saw was the Selectmen violate the speakers right to free speech and redress of the Government.

Every single citizen of the town should come to the defense of Mr. Clay, not because they agree with him and his positions but because if the board can shut him down they may be next.

Do not take you rights lightly and defend those rights for every person regardless if you agree with them or not, but just because they are using your rights as well as theirs. If he looses his rights then you WILL loose yours.

ToW
Tired of Waiting is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to Tired of Waiting For This Useful Post:
Cindido (02-28-2015), dickiej (02-28-2015), Seaplane Pilot (02-28-2015), tis (02-28-2015)
Old 02-28-2015, 10:24 AM   #64
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired of Waiting View Post
And remove the "Live Free or Die" !!!

I cannot believe some of the posts in this thread where the poster is willing to take "Free Speech, Redress of Government and others" away from a person just because they are a nut job and a thorn in the sides of some.

Here is a man who was RECOGNIZED by the board of selectmen to speak and as soon as he made a statement they, the Board, did not like they shut him down and cut his time off through "USE of FORCE." Are you kidding me!! And some of the posters on this board are OK with this?

I live in a small town that has Selectmen and is run by town meetings. We also have folks who seem to be on the nutty side. But NEVER has the board shut them down for expressing their opinion even if calling for the board to resign. But yes we have had folks removed from select and town meeting for getting unruly. That is defined as using foul language, issuing threats, or refusing to end their talk when time has expired.

I have read the town rules and watched the video and at NO time did the speaker violate the rules or the Constitution. The only violation I saw was the Selectmen violate the speakers right to free speech and redress of the Government.

Every single citizen of the town should come to the defense of Mr. Clay, not because they agree with him and his positions but because if the board can shut him down they may be next.

Do not take you rights lightly and defend those rights for every person regardless if you agree with them or not, but just because they are using your rights as well as theirs. If he looses his rights then you WILL loose yours.

ToW
I think there is one thing missing in your analysis as to why Mr. Clay was told to be quiet and get up from the table and either leave the room or sit in the audience.
The BOS took a legal and binding vote that accused Mr. Clay of using defamatory language against the board. Therefore it was not up to Mr. Clay to decide as to whether the board was right, or wrong. The chair made a motion and the board approved it. From that point on the board took the necessary action to have Clay removed and that did happen.
We can all give our opinion as to whether Clay’s right to free speech was violated, but now it is going to be up to the court/s to decide what the outcome will be.

So, all that being said, neither you nor I can say who has violated any laws, it will be up to the court/s to decide.
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 10:39 AM   #65
PaugusBayFireFighter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 837
Thanks: 361
Thanked 672 Times in 264 Posts
Default

He may have an argument with the BOS. But the game he is playing now involves a civil suit against a police officer that was doing his job. That's dirty pool as far as I'm concerned.
Should the civil suit against Alton's Police Chief and Police Department be embraced by the people of Alton as heroic in the fight for free speech?
PaugusBayFireFighter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 11:52 AM   #66
DickR
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Moultonborough
Posts: 508
Thanks: 0
Thanked 153 Times in 95 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
....We can all give our opinion as to whether Clay’s right to free speech was violated...
I don't like getting into debates where perhaps both sides were wrong at least in part, but abuse of "free speech" in this case and others gets me. Nowhere in the constitution, when talking about a person's right to speak freely, does it say that others shall be forced to listen.
DickR is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 11:57 AM   #67
Tired of Waiting
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 519
Thanks: 111
Thanked 258 Times in 107 Posts
Default I covered it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
I think there is one thing missing in your analysis as to why Mr. Clay was told to be quiet and get up from the table and either leave the room or sit in the audience.
The BOS took a legal and binding vote that accused Mr. Clay of using defamatory language against the board. Therefore it was not up to Mr. Clay to decide as to whether the board was right, or wrong. The chair made a motion and the board approved it. From that point on the board took the necessary action to have Clay removed and that did happen.
We can all give our opinion as to whether Clay’s right to free speech was violated, but now it is going to be up to the court/s to decide what the outcome will be.

So, all that being said, neither you nor I can say who has violated any laws, it will be up to the court/s to decide.

From my post: "Here is a man who was RECOGNIZED by the board of selectmen to speak and as soon as he made a statement they, the Board, did not like they shut him down and cut his time off through "USE of FORCE."

I watched the video and Mr, Clay did not in any way use defamatory language.

"A defamatory statement is a false statement of fact that exposes a person to hatred, ridicule, or contempt, causes him to be shunned, or injures him in his business or trade."

Show me where any statement had any of those results and I'll then agree.

The selectmen voted to violate his rights because their feelings were being hurt.

As for the part of the law suite against the police any lawyer is going to name all involved with the action. The complaint against the officer is for pain and suffering as stated for his arm being bent up behind his back. Don't know if he was really hurt or not but the court will decide that.

ToW
Tired of Waiting is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 12:12 PM   #68
Tired of Waiting
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 519
Thanks: 111
Thanked 258 Times in 107 Posts
Default Defend His Rights

Quote:
Originally Posted by PaugusBayFireFighter View Post
He may have an argument with the BOS. But the game he is playing now involves a civil suit against a police officer that was doing his job. That's dirty pool as far as I'm concerned.
Should the civil suit against Alton's Police Chief and Police Department be embraced by the people of Alton as heroic in the fight for free speech?
I stated they should rally to defend his "rights". They don't have to defend all of his law suits. They should put pressure on the BOS to amend the way they act in "public" meetings and how they treat those present at the meetings.

True the Courts will say if his rights were violated or not. But do you want your rights whittled away by the courts? Because that is what can and is happening in this country. Only you and your fellow citizens can stand up and DEFEND your rights.

When you stop defending your fellow citizens rights you loose yours as well. And it doesn't matter a tinkers damn if you agree with the other point of view or not.

ToW
Tired of Waiting is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Tired of Waiting For This Useful Post:
Grandpa Redneck (02-28-2015), nicole (03-01-2015), Pontoon Goon (07-16-2015)
Old 02-28-2015, 12:20 PM   #69
Tired of Waiting
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 519
Thanks: 111
Thanked 258 Times in 107 Posts
Default They shut him up with force!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by DickR View Post
I don't like getting into debates where perhaps both sides were wrong at least in part, but abuse of "free speech" in this case and others gets me. Nowhere in the constitution, when talking about a person's right to speak freely, does it say that others shall be forced to listen.

You are right!!

No one needed to listen. But that is NOT what happened. They prevented him from speaking through the use of force.

It's a lot different not to listen to a speaker and stopping them from speaking with force.

I hope you can see the difference.

ToW
Tired of Waiting is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 01:02 PM   #70
Charlie T
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 245
Thanks: 129
Thanked 114 Times in 51 Posts
Default The BOS didn't act smart

I personally think the BOS should have allowed his rant and when 5 min was up ask him to step away. If I was on the BOS I would have taken that 5 min to check email, step out for a bathroom visit, play solitaire on my phone or do anything other than listen to him. I doubt the rules state that anyone is forced to listen and pay attention during his time, he simply must be allowed to speak during his 5 min of fame.
If this guy was allowed his time he would have no recourse other than to sit down and shut up, he knew the rules and his legal rights long before he ever set foot in that room. If the BOS put any intelligent thought into it they could have avoided the unfortunate results, and the cost that is sure to result.

CT
Charlie T is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 01:46 PM   #71
Mr. V
Senior Member
 
Mr. V's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: the left coast (Portland)and West Alton
Posts: 743
Thanks: 12
Thanked 79 Times in 56 Posts
Default

I suspect that as he was arrested, that old line from Uncle Remus floated throught Clay's brain: "Please, bre'r fox, don't throw me into that briar patch."

He trolled the BOS perfectly.
Mr. V is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 03:42 PM   #72
Natt
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Moultonborough
Posts: 116
Thanks: 124
Thanked 26 Times in 22 Posts
Default Alton tries to silence one of its citizens

I understand that this is Clays' MO. Making the same claims over and over again. Offering constructive criticism is one thing but continuing once he makes his point is simply being obstructive. The select board are basically volunteers with a complex workload. They have to set a limit.
Natt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 03:56 PM   #73
Tired of Waiting
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 519
Thanks: 111
Thanked 258 Times in 107 Posts
Default They set the rules.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natt View Post
I understand that this is Clays' MO. Making the same claims over and over again. Offering constructive criticism is one thing but continuing once he makes his point is simply being obstructive. The select board are basically volunteers with a complex workload. They have to set a limit.

Agreed a limit is set. And that limit is FIVE minutes per their rules not Mr. Clay's. Once he was recognized to speak he had 5 minutes and was not finished when shut off.

ToW
Tired of Waiting is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Tired of Waiting For This Useful Post:
Jersey Ed (02-28-2015)
Old 02-28-2015, 04:01 PM   #74
belly_button_biter
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Gilford NH
Posts: 77
Thanks: 5
Thanked 21 Times in 15 Posts
Wink

I think they should all just resign
belly_button_biter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 04:41 PM   #75
dickiej
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Newburyport, MA
Posts: 115
Thanks: 3
Thanked 63 Times in 30 Posts
Default

"Dissent is the highest form of patriotism "-Samuel Adams. Watch Sons of Liberty if you want to see how chilling it can be when the government can silence you. The whole reason for the first amendment was so you could criticize the government and they couldn't drag you out of bed some night and hang you from a tree. We are slowly abdicating our rights and allowing the government to control us. Time to read George Orwell again everybody!
dickiej is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 05:06 PM   #76
8gv
Senior Member
 
8gv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,059
Thanks: 20
Thanked 311 Times in 187 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by dickiej View Post
"Dissent is the highest form of patriotism "-Samuel Adams. Watch Sons of Liberty if you want to see how chilling it can be when the government can silence you. The whole reason for the first amendment was so you could criticize the government and they couldn't drag you out of bed some night and hang you from a tree. We are slowly abdicating our rights and allowing the government to control us. Time to read George Orwell again everybody!
Or shoot you like what happened to Putin's adversary this week!
8gv is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-28-2015, 08:58 PM   #77
thinkxingu
Senior Member
 
thinkxingu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 2,110
Thanks: 583
Thanked 572 Times in 336 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by dickiej View Post
"Dissent is the highest form of patriotism "-Samuel Adams. Watch Sons of Liberty if you want to see how chilling it can be when the government can silence you. The whole reason for the first amendment was so you could criticize the government and they couldn't drag you out of bed some night and hang you from a tree. We are slowly abdicating our rights and allowing the government to control us. Time to read George Orwell again everybody!
Appreciate the literary reference, but I think this is much more of a Brave New World.
thinkxingu is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2015, 07:51 AM   #78
Patiently Watching
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 169
Thanks: 1
Thanked 32 Times in 28 Posts
Default

The Alton chief of police should resign and the town needs to issue an apology to this person and to the town.
'Public servants' are just that - if you cannot stand a little name calling or disagreement, perhaps the private sector (McDonald's) would be a better place...
While the individual at the center of this controversy appears to be someone who frequently pushes the boundaries, it does not constitute taking away his rights.
I hope this miscarriage of justice is very costly for the town of Alton and that other nearby local governments learn a lesson from their mistake.
Patiently Watching is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2015, 08:30 AM   #79
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patiently Watching View Post
The Alton chief of police should resign and the town needs to issue an apology to this person and to the town.
'Public servants' are just that - if you cannot stand a little name calling or disagreement, perhaps the private sector (McDonald's) would be a better place...
While the individual at the center of this controversy appears to be someone who frequently pushes the boundaries, it does not constitute taking away his rights.
I hope this miscarriage of justice is very costly for the town of Alton and that other nearby local governments learn a lesson from their mistake.
So in your view reconciliation between all parties involved is to destroy a man’s career, embarrass the governing body of Alton, and cost the tax payer a large sum of money. Make an example out of one side of the issue and call it a day.

Public servants aren’t supposed to be human beings…have emotions or allowed to express their feelings while in office…suck it up or get out.

This type of attitude is why no one wants to run for any office in town government.

OK now throw the 1st amendment violation at us again!!....Geeeeezzz!!!
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2015, 08:38 AM   #80
8gv
Senior Member
 
8gv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,059
Thanks: 20
Thanked 311 Times in 187 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Patiently Watching View Post
The Alton chief of police should resign and the town needs to issue an apology to this person and to the town.
'Public servants' are just that - if you cannot stand a little name calling or disagreement, perhaps the private sector (McDonald's) would be a better place...
While the individual at the center of this controversy appears to be someone who frequently pushes the boundaries, it does not constitute taking away his rights.
I hope this miscarriage of justice is very costly for the town of Alton and that other nearby local governments learn a lesson from their mistake.
I can tell you from experiance that one receives more than one's fair share of "citizen abuse" while working at McDonald's.
8gv is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2015, 09:08 AM   #81
Tired of Waiting
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 519
Thanks: 111
Thanked 258 Times in 107 Posts
Default Maybe

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
So in your view reconciliation between all parties involved is to destroy a man’s career, embarrass the governing body of Alton, and cost the tax payer a large sum of money. Make an example out of one side of the issue and call it a day.

Public servants aren’t supposed to be human beings…have emotions or allowed to express their feelings while in office…suck it up or get out.

This type of attitude is why no one wants to run for any office in town government.

OK now throw the 1st amendment violation at us again!!....Geeeeezzz!!!
If the one side is violating the citizens rights then yes destroy a carrier, embarrass a Government body and do what ever it is that is necessary to DEFEND your rights.

Rusty, Look at your sig line: “Private property and freedom are inseparable.” — George Washington

Now go do some research on property rights and how they have been eroded by the courts. Did you know that according to the Supreme Court of the United States the town can take your property through "eminent domain" and give it to a private developer if his project when completed would raise more taxes for the town?

Here, I decided to help with you search: http://www.cnn.com/2005/LAW/06/24/scotus.property/

I can tell you why that is. Because when the folks of a town in New Jersey faced the town taking their homes, few very few people from around the country came to their defense. When they lost WE all lost.

Think about this for a minute. You own some lake front property with lets say 500 foot of water front and five acres. Your family owns a small cabin. A contractor says if the town takes your property and gives it to him He'll build 200 condos and bring in significant tax revenue. Guess what? They can do it!!

When it comes to "OUR" rights you better think about fighting for them or "we" will lose them just like we did our property rights.

Oh and if you want to read about the CT case where the town took property of private citizens so Phizer could build a research facility then click this!!! http://www.governing.com/columns/eco...utrage-in.html

ToW

Last edited by Tired of Waiting; 03-01-2015 at 09:26 AM. Reason: Added SCOTUS Ruling amd CT results links
Tired of Waiting is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Tired of Waiting For This Useful Post:
DEJ (03-01-2015)
Old 03-01-2015, 09:19 AM   #82
wifi
Senior Member
 
wifi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Lakes Region
Posts: 1,321
Thanks: 282
Thanked 287 Times in 169 Posts
Default

Good point TOW.


What I am having trouble with (probably due to lack of understanding) is why public "servants" are given an exception in responsibility if they do wrong,
such as the town picking up all the legal fees. Maybe if they took some personal responsibility for their actions, power trips would have some consequences for all involved, and it would be a better place to live...
wifi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2015, 09:37 AM   #83
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

Believe it or not I’m OK with fighting for my rights and helping other people with theirs as long as we stay within the law of the land, educate ourselves about the violation, and methodically take action.

In the case of Mr. Clay it might have been better for him to have gone through some of those methods to get any government official removed from office.

He used his way and I guess there are a lot of people who agree with his method, I just don’t agree with it. I know what to do and where to go to get a petition started to remove someone from office. It takes more work to do it but I guess using my 1st amendment rights by just saying resign, resign, resign is OK because I have that right.

Fair enough..have a good day.
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2015, 09:42 AM   #84
MAXUM
Senior Member
 
MAXUM's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Hooksett, NH & Bear Island, NH
Posts: 2,062
Thanks: 185
Thanked 1,325 Times in 524 Posts
Default

This is going to backfire on the town of Alton if they opt to push this through the court system. The town residents have a right to address the board so long as their "rules" are followed which in this case it's pretty obvious the gentleman did. Now as for the content of his remarks, we need to be very careful here because as it has been pointed out before dessention is a part of every debate or discussion. The citizens must be given the chance to voice thier opinions whatever they may be so long as it is done in a civilized and respectful manner. Now is there merit to what this guy was saying? Who knows and that really who cares. He doesn't like what he sees for whatever reason and has stated that he feels the board is not doing thier job and therefore should resign. That is hardly defamitory it is an opinion. Heck after reading a bunch of the comments on this thread some of you could easliy be accused of defaming and being derrogatory torwards Mr. Clay if the same measuring stick is used by the board. Heck how can a democracy even function if the citizens are not able to speak thier mind? Let's not forget these officals work FOR the people - they are not anoited, they are not royality, they make the choice to serve the public and if that means having to sit through a little criticizm well so be it.

As for Mr. Clay, while I admire his willingness to stand up a say something he looses a whole lot a credibility by pushing the issue the way he did to the point of making a nuscense of himself and ultimately being arrested.

There is ample blame on both sides of the issue here.
MAXUM is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-01-2015, 10:24 AM   #85
Denny Crane
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 75
Thanks: 14
Thanked 19 Times in 15 Posts
Default Clay wins

A guy like this doesn't deserve a conversation of over 80 posts. He won. He got his 15 minutes of fame. Public meetings are to discuss agendas and address concerns, not to waste time. He should run for office then, but he'd be lucky to get 10 votes.
DC
Denny Crane is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Denny Crane For This Useful Post:
LIforrelaxin (03-11-2015), Natt (03-01-2015), VitaBene (03-02-2015)
Old 03-01-2015, 10:39 AM   #86
8gv
Senior Member
 
8gv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,059
Thanks: 20
Thanked 311 Times in 187 Posts
Default

Ya but...

Some people like to watch football. Others watch public discourse. A bit of spectator sport I think.
8gv is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2015, 08:39 AM   #87
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default Todays LDS article about Clay

Since arrest at Town Hall, Clay says Alton selectmen are intimidating him

Published Date Thursday, 05 March 2015 01:33


CHICHESTER — The Alton man who was arrested in early February for telling the Alton selectmen they should resign went on the record earlier his week about his opinion about what happened to him.

Jeffrey Clay, who has retained the Sisti Law Group to represent him and was interviewed in the firm's Chichester office on Monday, said that in his mind, Alton selectmen and Police Chief Ryan Heath "used my arrest as a way to silence me."

"They didn't want me to use my free speech to say something's wrong and I want it corrected," he said.

Clay was charged with disorderly conduct after telling selectmen, during the meeting's public comment period, that they were corrupt and should resign their positions.

During the episode, Chair Loring Carr banged his gavel to silence Clay while Selectman David Hussey left the table, exited the room and returned with Heath.

Heath led him from the room by holding one of Clay's arms behind his back and turned him over to a second officer who was outside the building. Clay was charged with two counts of misdemeanor disorderly conduct – one each for a separate clause within the disorderly conduct law.

Clay said during their brief encounter and after Heath told him to leave, he said to him that he didn't do anything and Heath replied that Clay "thinks everybody is wrong except for him."

Clay said his primary complaint about the board was their lack of transparency. He said the board had been meeting in "planning sessions" during odd times of the day with no agendas or minutes and had recently decided not to continue broadcasting their regularly scheduled meetings with Lakes Region Public Access.

He said the board has been having "illegal meetings" and deliberately "circumventing" the right to know laws.

He also said the board arbitrarily goes into non-public session, including one session where they apparently discussed him without giving him the opportunity to request the meeting be held in public, which is his right under the N.H. Right to Know Law.
Three days after his arrest, he went to the police station to get a copy of the police complaints and told the dispatcher he was recording her.

She told him he needed to turn off his cell phone because she didn't agree to be taped and threatened to have him arrested in a public building.

He said just prior to his encounter with the dispatcher, he had parked his car in an area that said "municipal parking." He said he interpreted that as a place he could park his car while on municipal business but the K-9 officer told him he couldn't park there. Clay said the officer's dog was off leash and approached him.

"All I saw was German Shepard," he said when asked which dog came to him.

He said he took a photograph of the lined up police cars and Heath told him he was trespassing.

"It's one photograph," he said.

He described his life since his arrest and subsequent encounter with the police.

"It's upsetting," he said, noting that he is a retired 20-year veteran of the U.S. Air Force who spent seven years as a military police officer.

He's married with two children, four grandchildren and his mother, who lives in Dover, is upset by all the publicity surrounding him and his arrest.

Clay taught high school and finished all of his credits but one toward his CAGS, the specific training an education needs to be a school superintendent. He was fired from the Newmarket School District some years ago where he was a teacher and athletic coach.

"It's upsetting," he repeated, saying when he went to the Alton Central School office to get a copy of Superintendent William "Bill" Lander's employment contract "one of the biggest police officers I've ever seen was standing there."

He said he learned that a school district employee had called the police because she was afraid of him.

"That's sending out a message that I am a problem," he said.

The sad thing, said Clay, is that the tactics used by the selectmen and police have worked because he is not going to town meetings.

"My wife doesn't want me to go because I'm on bail," he said.

Attorney Mark Sisti said he and Clay are hopeful that the criminal case can be resolved without litigation.

"Alton should step back and learn the rules," Sisti said. "We were shocked when we heard about it."

"In a sense, they've won by absolutely silencing me," Clay said.

http://www.laconiadailysun.com/index...e-since-arrest
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2015, 11:29 AM   #88
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

The article says: "Attorney Mark Sisti said he and Clay are hopeful that the criminal case can be resolved without litigation."

I know one way they could solve this issue from going to litigation and that is to have Clay apologize to the BoS and to the town of Alton for his conduct at that meeting.

If Clay feels that the board doesn't understand or follow the policy and procedures manual as well as some of the RSA's, then how about maybe educating them in a calm and peaceful manner. Evidently Clay has studied all of these laws/rules/regs and he feels they don't follow or understand them. Maybe he could set-up a class for them...he is/was a teacher.
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2015, 11:44 AM   #89
DEJ
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 310
Thanks: 236
Thanked 174 Times in 76 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
I know one way they could solve this issue from going to litigation and that is to have Clay apologize to the BoS and to the town of Alton for his conduct at that meeting.
Another more appropriate way IMO would be to have the BOS apologize to Mr. Clay and to the residents of Alton for their conduct towards Mr. Clay.
DEJ is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 12 Users Say Thank You to DEJ For This Useful Post:
Bear Islander (03-05-2015), Charlie T (03-05-2015), christo1 (03-05-2015), Cindido (03-05-2015), ITD (03-05-2015), mbr (03-05-2015), Newbiesaukee (03-06-2015), riverat (03-05-2015), RLW (03-05-2015), SAMIAM (03-05-2015), Seaplane Pilot (03-05-2015), Tired of Waiting (03-05-2015)
Old 03-05-2015, 11:48 AM   #90
upthesaukee
Senior Member
 
upthesaukee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Alton Bay
Posts: 4,690
Thanks: 1,404
Thanked 1,423 Times in 772 Posts
Default Maybe there can be a gathering at Alton's holiday...

I believe the Town is having a holiday in a few weeks, and maybe all those Alton Citizens involved (BOS and Mr Clay) can settle things up on April Fools' Day.

Both sides behaving badly, unfortunately.
__________________
I Live Here... I am always UPTHESAUKEE !!!!
upthesaukee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2015, 12:48 PM   #91
Seaplane Pilot
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 850
Thanks: 300
Thanked 467 Times in 174 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
The article says: "Attorney Mark Sisti said he and Clay are hopeful that the criminal case can be resolved without litigation."

I know one way they could solve this issue from going to litigation and that is to have Clay apologize to the BoS and to the town of Alton for his conduct at that meeting.

If Clay feels that the board doesn't understand or follow the policy and procedures manual as well as some of the RSA's, then how about maybe educating them in a calm and peaceful manner. Evidently Clay has studied all of these laws/rules/regs and he feels they don't follow or understand them. Maybe he could set-up a class for them...he is/was a teacher.
You can't be serious. Hopefully the town royalty and palace guards where you live don't turn on you someday. Mr. Clay should be applauded for having the fortitude to stand up to these arrogant, self-serving bozos. I may donate to his defense fund.
Seaplane Pilot is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to Seaplane Pilot For This Useful Post:
Bear Islander (03-05-2015), Charlie T (03-05-2015), Cindido (03-05-2015), riverat (03-05-2015), SAMIAM (03-05-2015), tis (03-05-2015)
Old 03-05-2015, 03:11 PM   #92
Tired of Waiting
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 519
Thanks: 111
Thanked 258 Times in 107 Posts
Default Ya that'll do it!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post

I know one way they could solve this issue from going to litigation and that is to have Clay apologize to the BoS and to the town of Alton for his conduct at that meeting.
Ya! that's it!! Have the person who's rights were violated apologize to those who violated them. That'll teach them to respect the rights of their constituents!!

ToW
Tired of Waiting is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Tired of Waiting For This Useful Post:
Charlie T (03-05-2015), Seaplane Pilot (03-05-2015)
Old 03-05-2015, 04:57 PM   #93
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

Removed Video.
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.

Last edited by Rusty; 04-08-2015 at 02:09 PM.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2015, 05:11 PM   #94
8gv
Senior Member
 
8gv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,059
Thanks: 20
Thanked 311 Times in 187 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
At a BoS meeting prior to the one this thread is all about Clay rambled on for over 20 minutes about what he thought they were doing wrong.

After you view this (if you want to), did the board give him enough time to beat them up before he was removed from this meeting? You won't see him being removed because it was cut-out of the video.

Did he speak for twenty minutes during a five minute public comment period?

At the time of this video, was there a time limit on public comments?
8gv is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2015, 05:27 PM   #95
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by 8gv View Post
Did he speak for twenty minutes during a five minute public comment period?

At the time of this video, was there a time limit on public comments?
At that time there wasn't any time limit...However now because of Clay, the BoS put a 5 min time limit on the rest of us...thank you very much Mr. Clay!!
Also because of Clay, they won't be showing the BoS meeting live anymore. We have to wait a few days to view it and they can cut out some of the video depending on what took place. Thanks again Mr. Clay.

Talk about out rights being taken away from us...thanks Mr. Clay.
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-05-2015, 06:56 PM   #96
tis
Senior Member
 
tis's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 4,529
Thanks: 446
Thanked 791 Times in 544 Posts
Default

Mr. Clay didn't take any rights away, Rusty. The Selectmen did.
tis is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to tis For This Useful Post:
Bear Islander (03-06-2015), Charlie T (03-05-2015), DEJ (03-05-2015), garysanfran (07-16-2015), Seaplane Pilot (03-05-2015), Tired of Waiting (03-06-2015)
Old 03-05-2015, 07:00 PM   #97
8gv
Senior Member
 
8gv's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 1,059
Thanks: 20
Thanked 311 Times in 187 Posts
Default

Whose decision was it to end the live streaming? Are there any rules for editing the video? Is there any legal requirement to video the meetings?
8gv is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2015, 08:47 AM   #98
Tired of Waiting
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 519
Thanks: 111
Thanked 258 Times in 107 Posts
Default Sounds Like

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty View Post
At that time there wasn't any time limit...However now because of Clay, the BoS put a 5 min time limit on the rest of us...thank you very much Mr. Clay!!
Also because of Clay, they won't be showing the BoS meeting live anymore. We have to wait a few days to view it and they can cut out some of the video depending on what took place. Thanks again Mr. Clay.

Talk about out rights being taken away from us...thanks Mr. Clay.
you don't like some of your rights being limited. There's a cure for that.

Start a citizen group to remove and replace those who are limiting your rights. That being the BOS, not Mr. Clay.

Mr. Clay may be the burr under the BOS saddle but he's not the one shooting the horse cause it bucked! The BOS is and if you don't want your horse shot take the gun (ability) of the BOS to do it. Remove them.

ToW

Last edited by Tired of Waiting; 03-06-2015 at 08:48 AM. Reason: spelling
Tired of Waiting is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2015, 09:17 AM   #99
Rusty
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 2,028
Thanks: 603
Thanked 684 Times in 423 Posts
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tired of Waiting View Post
you don't like some of your rights being limited. There's a cure for that.

Start a citizen group to remove and replace those who are limiting your rights. That being the BOS, not Mr. Clay.

Mr. Clay may be the burr under the BOS saddle but he's not the one shooting the horse cause it bucked! The BOS is and if you don't want your horse shot take the gun (ability) of the BOS to do it. Remove them.

ToW
I have no problem with what the Alton BoS did. They were the most patient group of elected public servants that I have ever seen.
__________________
It's never crowded along the extra mile.
Rusty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-06-2015, 11:18 AM   #100
Mr. V
Senior Member
 
Mr. V's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: the left coast (Portland)and West Alton
Posts: 743
Thanks: 12
Thanked 79 Times in 56 Posts
Default

Probably the best way to get Clay to stop is to have him enter politics, e.g. serve a term as a BOS member or something similar.

I think it might have been Dennis Hopper who said something like: "I used to say 'Stick it to the Man!" But then I BECAME the Man. So now what do I say: "Stick it to myself?"
Mr. V is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:10 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.

This page was generated in 0.64559 seconds