Fish and Game is 50
by Lynne Ober
It was family day at Hudson Fish and Game and the public was invited to help members celebrate their 50th Anniversary.
The day began with a round robin event for members, who got to show off all their skills in an attempt to win a brand new muzzle loading musket. They competed in shooting with guns and bows and arrows, fishing and even a golfing event. They laughed and kidded each other and competed to win.
The Fish and Game Club has a pond. Competitors had to shoot a ball about 80 yards over the water, at a pin set on the opposite side of the pond. The one closest to the pin won that event. Rick Marrow showed his skill by winning with a shot that was 4 feet five inches from the pin.
The old flint lock muzzle shoot ended in an 11 way tie. Each competitor got one shot at a melon. If you hit it, the melon exploded. If you missed the melon, it just sat on the ground jeering at your – or at least that was one competitor’s view.
Chris Perry won the archery event.
There were fishing events. Rick Marrow and Dennis Frenett tied on the casting with an open face reel. Competitors had to cast into a small hula hoop. Then for the fly fishing casting, competitors cast into a larger hoop. Winning this event were Marc Sarantis and Mike Mooney.
Chip Rylad was the best shot of the day. First he captured the .22 pistol shoot and then he and Jay Celani tied with perfect scores on the 100 yard rifle shoot.
Overall winner was Mike Mooney and second place went to Steve Schommer.
By the time it was time for the families to come, the twenty competitors were telling “war” stories about their morning’s adventure.
At noon Family Day officially kicked off. The DJ started playing, the fire was built, and chicken was roasting. Kids were enjoyed the hay stack hunt, the bounce house and the water slide. Parents were sitting at picnic tables until the tall pines enjoying the perfect and not humid summer day.
In the club house, some played pool and others looked at pictures that went back over the 50 year history of the club.
By the time the day ended, everyone agreed it had been a rousing good time.
Selectman MacLean Questions Town’s Position on Grant Allocations
by Doug Robinson
Selectman Kathleen MacLean, during the August 8 Selectmen’s meeting, revisited the Town’s position on the issuance of giving tax dollars to various charities.
In a letter to Hudson’s Town Attorney, MacLean stated: “I understand that it is legal for the Town to make donations/grants to organizations that provide services for the Town. My main question is: What defines a service to/for the Town?
“Clearly organizations like the American Red Cross, Nashua Soup Kitchen and Homeless Shelter and the Meals on Wheels program provided by St. Joseph Community Services fit into that category.
“Since the Police Department legally has to interview child victims of abuse and assault the Child Advocacy Center which provides these services in lieu of the Town also fits under the same category as providing a service to/for the Town.
“My legal and somewhat moral dilemma is making donations to organizations which provide services to individuals in the Town which would not otherwise qualify for assistance from the Town and therefore are not under the same category as providing a service to/for the Town.
“For example: If someone needs help with daycare provisions, whether they are for an adult or a child is the Town legally obliged to use taxpayer money to help? If someone needs assistance with counseling, be it grief counseling, marriage counseling, or assault counseling, is the town obliged under the law to provide and pay for these services?” What about individuals needing psychiatric and mental help? What about addictions?” Is the Town obligated by law to pay for individuals to become free of chemical addictions?
“We (The Town) also support CHIPS (Children of Hudson Interacting with Police Services). If a family comes to the Town asking for monetary assistance to provide activities for their children such as Boy Scouts, CYO, Girl Scouts, etc., which all educate and help children be better citizens and more knowledgeable about town leaders and institutions … (Much like CHIPS does). Is the Town legally obliged to use tax payer money to provide these individuals with these services?”
MacLean continues by asking the Town Attorney, “If the answer is no, the town is not legally responsible to provide these certain services to individuals, then is it legal for the Town to spend tax dollars on these organizations? Is giving money to organizations, which in fact do not provide services for/to in lieu of the Town, but only for individuals in the Town, legal?
“In my opinion, a donation is when the Town gives tax dollars to organizations that fall outside the category of providing a service to/for the Town. If I am correct in my thinking, then there are organizations which receive tax dollars under the guise of grants which do not qualify. And if this is the case, is it legal for the Town to make such donations.”
In a written decision from Hodes, Buckley, McGrath and LeFevre, Town of Hudson Attorney, their brief stated: “The lawfulness of a particular expenditure turns on whether or not there is a public benefit to that particular expenditure. It is an underlying principle of municipal government that money raised via taxation be spent only for the public purposes, not to the advantage of individuals. A public purpose has for its objective the promotion of public health, safety, morals, general welfare, security, prosperity, and contentment of all.”
According to Town Attorneys, “what constitutes a public purpose” requires a four-part test. First, the “ultimate goal or benefit to the public intended by the project must be analyzed. Second, the courts will look to see whether public or private parties will be the primary beneficiaries of the expenditure. Third, the speculative nature of the project must be examined. Fourth, the court must balance the public interest and to what degree.”
Our attorneys state that “the municipal appropriations statue provides that towns may at any legal meeting grant and vote such sums of money as they adjudge necessary for any purpose … ”
In referring to MacLean’s inquiry, “grants to non-profit organizations are lawful if the municipality is receiving services that are designed to bring about a public benefit for the residents of the Town of Hudson. For example, the Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter receive funds through the community grant program. The Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter provides food and shelter to indigent residents of the Town when they are in need. This is authorized under the appropriations statute ... because the statue authorized municipalities to appropriate and expend funds for the purpose of aiding indigent residents.
Big Brothers and Big Sisters, an organization which mentors and provides activities to Hudson’s youth, represents another organization which benefits the residents of Hudson as they are a public benefit as well. CHIPS would also fall within this category as they are a non-profit organization whose purpose is to get “young people interacting with law enforcement. This organization provides a public benefit by providing the children of Hudson with activities and education about law enforcement, which will hopefully result in those youth becoming law abiding residents.”
While our Town Attorneys did not define all of the agencies to whom we donate, Selectman MacLean listed the following agencies that “clearly fall into the category, service to the Town” are:
MacLean further stated that the following Agencies, in her opinion, do not fall within the category of “providing a service to the Town”:
The following agencies would also be in question, according to MacLean:
Selectman MacLean explained that while she respects the opinion of the Town Attorney, she “feels that the Board of Selectmen does not have the right to give tax money to agencies, just because they feel they provide a valuable service. I appreciate and value every agency on these lists,” comments MacLean. “Don’t get me wrong, all of the agencies on this list are awesome, wonderful groups. But if anyone of us thinks they are that awesome, we can give them our own money. That is how I feel; I do not think we have the right to give them other people’s money.”
“Every member of the Board of Selectmen is free to give their own money to any agency they wish, as are the citizens of Hudson. For every agency on this list there are five to ten more that provide the same service. Where do we draw the line?” stated MacLean.
Selectman Ken Massey stated that the Town attorneys had defined the objective as “the promotion of public health, safety, morals, general welfare, security, prosperity, and contentment of all. These are the operative words.”
Massey also stated that “everybody has the perfect opportunity. It is called the Deliberative Session at the Town Meeting and they are perfectly free to make any and all motions to add, subtract, or delete any line item in the budget.”
Dreams of the Midsummer Unfold on Stage
August 11 and 12 arrived with the accompaniment of fairies dancing and lovers loving with the Alvirne High School Class Act production of William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Co-directed by the mother - son tandem of Mrs. Jennifer LaFrance and Mr. Alexander LaFrance, the play went off without a hitch to the delight of almost 400 people between the two nights. Featuring such extraordinary cast members as Alessandro Silveri, Brian Melo, Jackie Saindon, Nicole Nolan, Keith Lelievre, Colin Malette, and Christine Jozitis, the audience was entertained from start to finish.
Megan Lisay, a recent graduate of Alvirne High School, was in attendance for the show, said that the show was “nothing short of incredible.” Max Schloner, a distinguished actor himself, commented on the “preciseness and accuracy in the acting of the cast members.”
In all, there were about 75 people who were involved with the production of this play, and without all of their hard work and dedication, this play would not have run so smoothly. Mrs. LaFrance, director of 20 Class Act plays, had this to say about the play, “I believe the cast and crew even surprised themselves with their achievements this summer. No professional group has offered as fine or as fun a production as this year’s Summer Shakespeare Project. I am exceedingly proud of every one of them.” This play will pick up again, with a few changes to the cast, in mid-September at Alvirne High School.
Hudson Recreation Talent Show
by Lynne Ober
It was more than a little bit scary for the competitors, but the annual talent show was great fun for the audience.
Held at Hudson’s summer recreation program, the talent show is one of the highlights as the program winds down for the summer – the talent was plentiful and varied and the audience was very enthusiastic.
The singing was audience pleasing and the dancing well choreographed and energetic – just what the audience wanted to see.
Yo-yo tricks, karate and gymnastics were performed to the keyed up, clapping of the appreciative audience.
The judges struggled to determine who would win in each of the categories, but the reality was that each and every performer gave his or her all to the show and each of them was a winner.
The overall winners were: