THE SAUGUS ADVOCATE – Friday, May 10, 2019 Page 5 Request denied Town Meeting member not allowed to introduce nonbinding resolution supporting school custodians By Mark E. Vogler S chool Custodians and their supporters who picketed outside of Saugus Town Hall early Monday night looked forward to getting moral support from Town Meeting members. Some of the custodians planned on attending the opening night of the Annual Saugus Town Meeting, hoping to hear Town Meeting members advocate on their behalf. But shortly before the meeting began, custodians learned there would be no acknowledgement at Town Meeting about the 21 custodians facing the possible loss of their jobs if the School Committee votes to privatize janitorial services sometime this spring. “What we had hoped for didn’t happen,” said Rick Nelson, a longtime custodian of Saugus Public Schools and a member of the local union’s executive board. “And I don’t know why,” he said. When approached by The Saugus Advocate this week, Precinct 5 Town Meeting Member Ronald M. Wallace confirmed that he planned to introduce a nonbinding resolution to support the custodians – but he was denied that opportunity. “I wanted to read a nonbinding resolution and then take a roll call vote from members showing their support for the custodians,” said Wallace, who has been an electrician for 32 years and a member of Local 103 IBEW. “I do support the custodians and I do think that privatization is a bad thing. This was a nonbinding resolution. But I was just trying to send a message to the School Committee,” Wallace said. “It’s my right to get up there and speak. And it seems that I was being shut down. It’s not about me reading the letter. rant in order for them to be discussed, there have been a number of resolutions introduced in recent years from the floor of Town Hall. At the 2017 Annual Town Meeting, Precinct 4 Town Meeting member Albert J. DiNardo was allowed to discuss his nonbinding resolution for a study on health-care costs even though it wasn’t on the warrant. Once the motion to table discussion of the resolution died by a slim 17-19 vote, the article itself sailed by a wide margin: 36-1, with two abstentions. DiNardo argued that Town SILENCING THE MESSENGER: At Monday’s Annual Town Meeting, Saugus Town Meeting Member Ronald M. Wallace says, he wasn’t allowed to read his resolution supporting school custodians. (Courtesy Photo to The Saugus Advocate) It’s about me being silenced when others in the past have been allowed to speak on resolutions. It’s about fairness,” he said. Wallace said his request was denied by Town Moderator Stephen N. Doherty, “who I respect and like and consider a nice and fair guy.” The moderator appeared to have gone against past practice of allowing members to speak out on local issues, according to Wallace. “I’m a lifelong Saugus resident and have lived here for 50 years. And I have two kids in Saugus Public Schools,” he said. “I should be allowed to do it, seeing that others have been allowed to speak. Hopefully, I’ll be able to read it in two weeks,” he said. Doherty could not be reached for comment and did not return a call from The Saugus Advocate. Although many members would rather have resolutions listed on the town warOLD SACHEM | from page 4 his retirement in 1967 he was seventh in all-time career points, fifth in assists, thirteenth in goals and second to Gordie Howe in games played. But there was more to Kelly than just a professional hockey player. He was elected to the House of Commons of Canada in 1962 as part of the Federal elections. He defeated the Conservative party candidate, incumbent John Hamilton. Red was reelected the following year, defeating the Progressive Conservative candidate, Alan Eagleson, the future NHL player agent. During his time in the House of Commons he was in opposition to Conn Smyth, the owner of the Maple Leafs, over a flag debate in which the former Red Ensign flag was replaced by the Maple Leaf. The world not only lost a great hockey player, but a great gentleman. Meeting has a rich history of its resolutions and warned fellow members to “be careful in abdicating” that option, which has sometimes had an influence in changing views on a local issue. “It’s always been the practice here that resolutions can be offered at any time,” DiNardo said, noting that a resolution introduced several years ago may have helped keep the Saugus Public Library open.

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