Wednesday, March 26, 2014


A friend recently sent me an editorial from the Exeter News Letter talking about the need for a change on the Board of Selectmen.  Change can be a good thing and I am not unhappy with the results of the last election.  What I wasn’t enthused with was the lack of good reporting on the part of the News Letter.

I did not see it reported that the chairman of the Board, Don Clement, a person who the majority of the Board supported in his selectman’s election, and supported him to be Chairman of the Board, he was Matt’s Vice Chairman and a pretty good one.  He badly wanted to be Chairman and the majority of the Board thought he could do the job and elected him.

It was to everyone’s surprise when the majority of the Board disagreed with the Chairman on the dam removal issue he turned on them and openly attacked them.  He showed anger at meetings and hostile to some of the members.  He showed a total lack of leadership and understanding that you can disagree on issues; but, try not to focus on the disagreements, move on.  He couldn’t do that and stopped listening to the majority of the Board and found himself isolated (by his own actions) because of his own behavior and not because of anyone else. I don’t know if he knew how close he came from being removed as chairman because of the way he was acting.  Unfortunately it was close to the election and there was a question the news paper could understand or report it correctly.  Instead the news paper blamed the majority board when the minority of the board went off pursuing their own agenda.

It was a far cry from the year before when Matt kept the majority of the Board moving in a positive direction, while keeping the lunatic fringe at bay.

There was a reporter at each meeting and saw what was going on; but never really reported it.  This caused the paper to become a “he said she said” and more of a gossip column than a news paper.  The day before the local election the Exeter Reporter was reassigned and Jason Schreiber is now the new or recycled Exeter Reporter coming from being a highly respected reporter for Exeter and then editor before leaving to work at the Manchester Union Leader. I feel confident that Jason will bring credibility back into Exeter’s news reporting.

Since change is good do we push to change the management of The Seacoast Newspaper or the Exeter News Letter?

I guess it depends on who the change benefits.

Friday, March 21, 2014


I was at a State Employee Union meeting about 2 wks ago and had a chance to see some old friends that work at the Department of Environmental Services Headquarters.  Since some of them knew of the big issue with the Exeter Dam Removal and the issues of the Great Bay they were telling me that the new discussions behind the scenes is there appears to be no proof that nitrogen in Great Bay is damaging the eel grass or much of anything else some even said that the higher ups claim that there is no proof that it doesn’t, so what is their proof.


Great Bay has never been one of my issues; in fact I’ve only been on it once in my entire life.  I know that there are many people with special interests that are happy to be Great Bay experts; that is good because it allows people with an interest in the issue to pursue it to their hearts content.


There appears to be something going on behind the scenes for the DES Hqtrs staff to be hearing/saying what the rest of us have been wondering.


What most people don’t know is four years ago when house was run by O’Brien the majority of republicans wanted to do away with DES as an agency.  One attempt that was considered was to wipe out their budget; but most of their money comes from the feds or outside sources so when they realized that it probably would not happen, the effort was dropped.


It looks like some communities are being pushed to spend millions of dollars for sewer plant upgrades to meet standards that there might not be a need for or at least, the so called evidence is shaky at best.




I think I have a legitimate question to the BOS and that is after the nasty battle to tear down the dam can we rename the river?  When the dam comes down can we rename it Clement Creek or Ingrams Brook.  I think we should pay homage to people who worked so hard to get the dam down.  Now I can’t wait to get the job done.

Friday, March 7, 2014


For a number of years we had a water and sewer committee, which Griset was on.  Then the Board of Selectman, on a majority vote, voted to put a very qualified person on the Board the Board threatened to resign, and the leader was Griset.  The board did not rescind their vote and the Committee resigned.  A year or so later the Board re-instituted the Committee and did not accept Griset’s request to be placed back on the Committee.


 Griset then showed up at a selectman’s meeting demanding all kinds of information, notes and the same numerous RSA 91-a requests he uses to harass the Board and the town manager.  To his credit Don Clement told Griset at a public and recorded Selectman’s meeting that he had come before the board on prior occasions and presented misinformation; he further went on to say that Griset had sent letters to the newspapers and presented misinformation and Selectman Clement would not vote for Griset for this commission or any other, in essence calling Griset a liar; the Board of Selectman did not vote to put Griset back on the Water and Sewer Committee.


Go back a few years when Griset was trying to get a deed cleared so he could build his “dream house” he went around town convincing people that the town should sell him land for a $1.00, that is right a $1.00, at town meeting so he could build his dream house.  The town believed him, as did Matt, myself and the voters, and then voted him the land for a $1.00.  Once again he broke his word and sold that land for a hefty profit.


Now he is pushing hard to tear down the dam now I don’t know if that would dry out his wetlands and make them sub-dividable so he can sell that land too.  What I do know is a lot of people aren’t buying that he is trying to save the fish and the environment by tearing down the dam and they are trying to figure out what is in it for Griset.




I am disappointed by the Exeter River Study Committee.  I have read their report and it looks like they worked very hard at pulling together information they gleaned from other study committee reports that have been done over the years.  I remember being told by a town official that there was a report done that said if you open the gate at the dam it would only drain the river about 2”; at face value we already know, what I knew as a kid that information was wrong.  Opening the gate will drain the river completely down if you leave it open for a full for 24 hours.  So as far as study committees go, fool me once shame on you; I think you get the picture.