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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Town Council Chair Michael Bowie Recall Petition, Just The Facts Nothing Hidden

 Dot Fitzgerald with the Michael Bowie Recall Papers

To the Editor
October 22, 2010

I would like to shed some light, and facts, on the recall of Michael Robert Bowie who is chairman of the Lisbon Town Council.

At the October 19 Town Council meeting, a councilor asked what the recall was all about, or something to that effect.

Printed below are the facts as on the Petition:

Town of Lisbon
Petition Papers

We, the undersigned, qualified voters in DISTRICT 2 of the TOWN OF LISBON, Maine entitled to vote in town affairs, hereby propose to recall: MICHAEL ROBERT BOWIE, 282 MAIN STREET, LISBON FALLS ME from the office of COUNCILOR for the following reason(s):

A)    denying any councilor the right to place an item on the agenda (charter sec. 2.04),

B)     not consulting with all councilors when dealing with town manager (charter sec. 2, 04.)

C)    Improper influence and/or conflict of interest regarding use of town funds (chapter 12), and

D)    Failure to properly preside over a Town Council meeting.


Below, copied from the Town of Lisbon Town Charter, and a brief example of violations: 

A) Sec. 2. 04; “(2) develop after consultation with the Town Manager, agenda for Council meetings, provided that no Councilor shall be denied the right to place an item on the agenda.” 

Councilor Cote asked repeatedly that Mr. Bowie place on the agenda that the citizens of the Town of Lisbon have the right to a referendum vote on the town budget. And was repeatedly refused.

B) Sec. 2.04; “(3) after consultation with the Council, represent the Council in all dealings with the town Manager and with all statutory and advisory boards, commissions and committees in person or be delegation.”

I have been at many council meetings when Mr. Cote said that he had not been informed, or received e-mails from Mr. Bowie concerning matters of importance.

C) Chapter 12: conflict of interest. Regarding the Police Department, and many others. and

D)     I have been at many council meetings when Chair Bowie limited people in the audience 2 minutes or 5 minutes to speak, and to speak no more than twice. Yet in February 2009 he allowed someone in the audience to rant and rave against a councilor for 2 hours. And again in a subsequent meeting another person in the audience to do the same, for more than one-half hour.   

It would appear that one must be a personal friend of Councilor Bowie to be able to go to the podium and “put on a show”, rant and rave against a fellow councilor.

And, no councilor nor the town manager, intervened, to put a stop to the tirade.

Respectfully submitted by Dot Fitzgerald

Free copies of the Town Charter are available at the Lisbon Town Office. See Twila Lycette for your copy.