LETTER TO THE EDITOR: It's Time to Take Back Sudbury

Residents Rita and Sid Bourne have had enough of the recent actions by town officials.

Recently Sudbury has witnessed:

  • An unprecedented 5-year sweetheart contract for the Town Manager approved in a midnight lame duck session of the selectmen, just before outsider Haarde was elected.
  • Campaign email blast from a school committee member on the eve of last election, using the school’s email list of parents in violation of policy, urging reelection of O’Brien and defaming his opponent.
  • 2012 Town Meeting Warrant 4, the budget, amended at the meeting, thus preventing preview by residents. Increases totaled $2 million. Town insiders had this information in advance, but taxpayers did not.
  • Selectmen Drobinski and O’Brien, breaking with their own tradition denied Selectman Haarde his turn in the rotation as Chair of the BOS.
  • A large celebration party of  town insiders after Town Meeting, after closing hours in violation of the Lavender Restaurant’s license, included Selectmen O’Brien and Drobinski who control Sudbury liquor licenses.

Informed residents view the political culture of Sudbury as unethical and unhealthy. Comments in the Sudbury Patch and the Sudbury Town Crier reflect frustration but not surprise. We relative newcomers (nine years) are both surprised and appalled. Actions at BOS, ZBA, and the last Town meetings hint of key decisions made with little regard for relevant facts, and tight control of information.

Sudbury must wake up. Power and influence are reclaimed by action, not by words. Let’s insist on a government that is truly for the people of this lovely town. Our approach must include parents, seniors, business owners, and elected officials outside the “in group.”

Let’s consider:

  1. Demanding justification from Selectmen Drobinski and O’Brien for their recent questionalble actions.
  2. Asking explanation of the for the apparently “softball” handling of the post-Town Meeting events: , , and their overwhelming response to the report of a person missing for only two hours.
  3. Asking the owner of the Lavender to explain the private party for the selectmen and how it relates to his liquor license.
  4. Picket Town Hall with signs/questions to be answered.
  5. Citizens meeting at Town Hall to discuss questions and actions.
  6. Fostering an environment where local businesses feel comfortable disclosing “considerations” (see Lavender) to local politicians and town employees.

Citizens, please voice your concerns and take action.

Rita and Sid Bourne

20 Northwood Drive


siobhan hullinger June 08, 2012 at 11:20 AM
all I can say is WOW!
SkimThreePercent June 08, 2012 at 12:28 PM
Once the Police Department becomes suspect, things get very much more difficult.
WhereDoISignARecallPetition? June 08, 2012 at 12:47 PM
Thanks for the informative letter and to all those who are reporting on the school committee and selectman shenanigans. There has to be a deep bench in the Sudbury citizenry in terms of legal expertise and governmental experience - anyone willing to step up and organize a committee/group to counter the elected officials and school governance?
Anthony J Fortunato June 08, 2012 at 02:07 PM
I understand the frustration, but as "informed citizens" I would hope we go with FACTS instead of gossip that turns into FACTS. I am appalled with the handling of Ms. J, but sometimes a snowballing effect clouds real reasons to be upset with witch hunts. It is my understanding that under Lavender's liquor license they are allowed to serve alcohol until 1AM 7 days a week. It is up to Lavender to set its hours based on supply and demand, which I believe a few of us still believe in. For instance, during football season, they may be open beyond 10:00PM, on a Monday night, if business warrants it. And in fact, if the Patriots are playing, they are known to be open until 1AM. Let's stop creating incorrect FACTS by saying people were at Lavender after 10:00PM "in violation of the Lavender Restaurant's liquor license".
siobhan hullinger June 08, 2012 at 03:06 PM
Anthony, football games like the Patriots would likely fall under the "special events" category of their license. They are not allowed to make decisions on staying open later as they see fit. If you would like a copy of the town's liquor laws and the license I would be happy to provide you with them.
Enuff June 08, 2012 at 03:16 PM
Anthony, I am very confident if I went to Lavenders at 11pm after they closed at 10pm and asked them to open up again they would laugh at me. Regardless, they were there at 1:47am which is against the law.
pmotw June 08, 2012 at 06:40 PM
It looks like the truth will be coming out soon regarding the Lavenders party, the OUI and the whereabouts of Mr. Drobinski. An individual who was part of this outing is going to come clean and provide the details. Mr. O’Brien, Mr. Drobinski and Ms. Valente have an opportunity to tell the truth before the embarrassing details are made public.
Sid Bourne June 08, 2012 at 07:53 PM
BOS meeting June 12, next Tuesday, 9:30 agenda item is a discussion of the Chief of Police letter to Lavender concerning the events of May 8. Should be interesting what they have to say.
Publius June 08, 2012 at 08:25 PM
If the truth comes out, I suggest creating a wordpress webpage so the comments don't get deleted before the truth gets out.
joanne June 08, 2012 at 09:24 PM
I think we should all be at the BOS mtg!
Michael Troiano June 13, 2012 at 05:33 AM
Tonight I witnessed an egregious abuse of power... public officials in our own town insulating themselves from accountability for a whole series of bad choices with serious consequences. They're betting this will just go away. Let's stay together and make sure it doesn't. Please join the "Lavendergate" facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/248320571935814/
siobhan hullinger June 13, 2012 at 11:26 AM
I agree Michael. I watched the meeting on Sud TV ( apparently FIOS was out but Comcast was showing it). What struck me even further was the clear obstruction of fact gathering. The fact that the Chief of Police was not there to discuss his memo appears to be an effort by Ms Valente to prevent the truth. Bob Haarde indicated that the chief wants to address this - so who told him not to come?
Edward Stark June 13, 2012 at 12:02 PM
I just woke up and saw the Lavender story on Fox News. How embarrassing.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »