Roland Van Liew For Selectman

Van Liew for Selectman

Mission Statement

As a selectman, I can be relied upon to provide concrete steps toward good and honest government, with accountability for malfeasance. I will make decisions based on the benefit to the town’s residents as a whole rather than the benefit of a few at the expense of the many.

I place importance on listening to residents’ concerns and acting on them, rather than “making the hard decisions regardless of what the residents want,” as one incumbent selectman put it. To the extent that hard decisions need to be made, they can be made while taking into account residents’ concerns rather than rejecting them. It’s time for reform of “business as usual” at Town Hall and it’s time for our top officials to act with honesty, integrity and with the interests of the public at large in mind. At present, it's clear that too many of these officials believe they are not accountable to anyone.

Not a single incumbent selectman has ever come out in support of accountability for malfeasance. In fact, the selectmen refuse to impose monitoring of no-bid contracts; refuse to uphold the preservation restriction on what is supposed to be Center Park; and refuse to vet committee appointments according to conflict-of-interest standards set out in the Town’s Code of Ethics bylaw. I commit to uphold the law on behalf of the citizens of the town and hold accountable those who break the law.

The incumbent selectmen support the overpayment over some $1.4 million for the new DPW site, paid to the property owner who is an associate of the Town Manager. One of the incumbents whose term is expiring, characterizes the Town Manager as a “superstar” and all of the incumbents supported his contract extension through 2015. The fact is, our selectmen do not provide proper oversight of the Town Manager, as demonstrated by the fact that he refuses to provide reporting of amounts spent on no-bid contracts because “it’s not required by law.” As a selectman I will not just yawn and move on.

Risca and Roland Van Liew, April 2012, celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary with their three boys.

I am running for Selectman because I care deeply about Chelmsford and I have the backbone to improve integrity, accountability and financial performance within town government. Town Hall has been dominated too long by lawyers and developers and realtors who seek to profit by positioning our town to head down the path of development, construction, congestion, gridlock, and higher taxes by selling, developing, and otherwise squandering our money, our open spaces, and our way of life. I am an honest man. I act with integrity. My positions are based on analysis of hard evidence rather than on biased opinions of self-interested cronies, and are influenced by rational discourse rather than influence-peddling.

If you vote for me for Selectman I can promise you that I will act to promote the interests of the greater public good and that I will not reward insiders or politically connected money interests with gifts of public land or public funds. We all deserve a town government which is honest and well-intentioned. If elected, I will do whatever I can to deliver a town government which does just that to you, the citizens of Chelmsford.