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Time:06:49 pm
The endlessly entertaining Wikipedia delighted my day.
Can you find the humor in this short article about Watertown?
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Subject:Watertown and the budget
Time:12:50 pm
The following letter, written by chairman of the Watertown-Oakville Taxpayers Association Frank McHale, appeared in the Republican American on June 21, 2005.

Schools should bear brunt of Watertown budget cuts

Watertown-Oakville voters, taxpayers and parents have spoken, again. By a margin greater than 600 votes and in all four districts, the public school monopoly's spending plan for 2005-06 was smashed while the town's budget lost by 200 or so votes but passed in two districts.
So what should the Town Council derive from these numbers? The Board of Education, not the town, must come back with substantial cuts in its request for our money. We believe parents and taxpayers have less of a problem with police, fire or public-works operations; spending in those areas is far more transparent, so they know what they're getting for their money.
On the other hand, Watertown's school department is like a beehive of hidden costs, questionable programs and job titles that only a seasoned bureacrat would love. Labor-cost concessions and a bottom-up audit of every school program to determine what is and isn't needed should be the order of the day.
The council's leadership must not make the mistake of squeezing the town's budget rather than the school bureacracy in defiance of the voting results. We'd like to think that our Republican-led Town Council is somewhat of a counterweight to the Democrat-labor socialists running the legislature. Now is the time for the Republican council leaders to prove us correct.

Frank McHale

This is the letter I'm sending in as a response. With any luck, it'll be published.

In his June 21st letter, Frank McHale of the Watertown-Oakville Taxpayers Association slammed the Watertown school department as a “beehive of hidden costs”, and called for “substantial cuts” to the 2005-2006 fiscal school year budget. Mr. McHale and WOTA always seem to ignore one thing: the Watertown school system is in crisis.
According to the Connecticut Net Current Expenditures (NCE) per pupil report, the Watertown School system is ranked 167th in the state for per-student spending (out of 169 systems). Over the past decade, repeatedly failing school budget referendums have led to “substantial cuts”, including cuts to equipment, positions, programs, etc. In the weeks following the budget defeat, the Board of Education has had to make some very hard decisions- including substantial cuts to athletic programs at both Swift Middle School and Watertown High School. This trend of cutting after every budget vote is beginning to take its toll on the integrity of our school system.
So what “questionable programs” is WOTA referring to? Are they talking about the Talented and Gifted program that was cut nearly ten years ago, or the Alternative School that suffered the same fate last year? Or perhaps they want to cut additional “fat” by letting go even more librarians, music teachers and computer paraprofessionals. WOTA continually calls for concessions from members of the teachers union. The truth is that under a system of binding arbitration, cutting the school budget will not result in defeating those evil “Democrat-labor socialists” WOTA is so dead-set against, but will result in substantial cuts to our already under-funded local schools, including slashes to pre-kindergarten programs, art and music education, technology and more.
Less than one third voter turn out at the June 7th referendum is not the overwhelming majority opinion that Mr. McHale would lead one to believe. Watertown parents and taxpayers care about their children and students, and on June 28th, they should go out and show it.
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Time:12:26 am
fuck wota.
that's all i'll say on the matter.
fuck them up their tight asses.
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Subject:Jesus God Watertown makes me die.
Time:06:07 pm
Bitten boy's dad: Incident should serve as warning

Sunday, March 13, 2005

By Paul Singley

Copyright © 2005 Republican-American

WATERTOWN -- The father of a 7-year-old Southbury boy whose face and skull were bitten Thursday by Max the dog said people should not have fought so fiercely last year to have the dog returned to its owners.

Joe McMahon said Saturday that his son, Dylan, will likely need major cosmetic surgery to repair the skin on his left cheek, lips, left ear and back of his head. Dylan suffered severe skin tears and puncture wounds when the golden retriever bit him inside the home of Tae and Sook Pyon, his owners. Dylan and his mother, Maria, were at the home getting design tips from Sook Pyon, an interior decorator. Their business at the home was strictly professional, said Maria McMahon.

Joe McMahon has hired lawyer Frank J. Scinto of Southbury to represent his family. He did not say whether he plans to sue the Pyons, who brought Max to an animal hospital in New Milford on Thursday night to be euthanized.

"I want to get the message out there that if you fight for a dog that bites, this is what happens," McMahon said Saturday.

Deputy Police Chief John Gavallas said Saturday the Pyons would likely not face criminal charges. He characterized it as a civil matter, adding investigators still needed to talk to people who were there during the incident, including the boy. He said after the police talk to those involved, they will turn the investigation over to the state animal control officer.

Gavallas said the dog was locked behind a thigh-high gate in the Pyon kitchen when the McMahons arrived. He said that according to a report filed by Maria McMahon, Sook Pyon assured the woman that the dog was friendly and that it was only penned in so it wouldn't jump on visitors.

He said he did not know what prompted the attack. Gavallas said he was waiting for the results of a rabies test conducted on Max after he was euthanized and did not know the disposition of Max's body.

The bite on Dylan McMahon has thrust Max back into the spotlight. On Nov. 25, 2003, Max, who was less than a year old, bit the Pyons' 12-year-old son, Cory, on the cheek after the boy woke the dog from a nap. The injury required several stitches.

Max was seized by Animal Control Officer Patricia Fitzgerald. She recomended the dog be euthanized, a decision the Pyons appealed with the state Agriculture Department, which oversees such matters.

Several Watertown residents and animal lovers from around the state and country supported the Pyons by signing petitions, holding rallies and putting signs that read "Save Max" on their lawns, car windows and in their businesses.

On June 17, 2004, Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, who mediated the case, announced an agreement between attorneys and local and state officials to give the dog back to the Pyons. As part of the agreement, the state said it would handle any further developments, including taking Max if he bit again.

While Tae Pyon said he does not regret the decision to bring Max home, he said his heart goes out to the McMahon family.

"Yes we're missing Max, but the boy's condition and family comes first," he said Saturday. "We hope the boy recovers soon, and we're terribly sorry this happened."

He said he has not thought about whether the family will get another dog yet because the incident has been so painful. He said many of Max's original defenders have called or sent cards to show their support.

Many in Watertown on Saturday said they disagreed with the Pyon's decision to bring Max home.

"I wouldn't have let him go back into the house after the first bite," said Lisa Lawlor of Watertown, who owns three dogs, two of which are golden retrievers. "I don't know if I would have put him down, but I would have given the dog to someone who owns a farm or someplace where this dog can run free."

Lawlor and her sister, Elaine Crane, also of Watertown, talked about the Max case Saturday morning as they shopped for groceries.

"My feeling is that once a dog bites, it should not be let back into the house," Crane said. "I am a huge animal lover, but people are more important."

Paul Carey of Waterbury agreed.

"I have dogs and children, and if my dog bit my kid, I would not want him around," he said.

Dan France of Oakville believed the dog should not have been put to sleep after Thursday's attack.

"I think they could have found another home for him," he said. "I'm sure someone would have wanted the dog."

Anita Calabrese of Watertown believed an investigation into whether the boy antagonized the dog should have taken place before the dog was put down. Those details were not known Saturday because the victim was the only witness.

Aside from saying he wanted to get a message out about the danger of keeping alive a dog that has bitten in the past, Joe McMahon and his family declined comment on the biting incident Saturday. The McMahons have turned all questions over to Scinto, who couldn't be reached for comment Saturday.

Resident John Ogren, who hung "Save Max" signs on the back of his pickup truck while the dog's future was still up in the air, was saddened by what happened, and curious what caused Max to snap.

"It makes an awful lot of people who investigated that dog wrong," he said.

He maintains Fitzgerald shouldn't have "taken the law into her own hands" and ordered Max put down after a two-week quarantine even though her report revealed Max had a history of biting people and a pattern of aggression.

After she seized Max, she talked with a dog trainer in Waterbury who said Max growled and snapped at her at a pet shop.

Max bit a "training hand" Fitzgerald placed in his food bowl on Jan. 29, 2004, and exhibited other acts of aggression toward the Pyons before he bit Cory Pyon, according to her report.

"I don't know what to say. Usually golden retrievers are not that type of dog," said Ruth Petrauskas of Watertown, an ardent Max supporter who used to run a dog training school. "In any breed you can have exceptions. It's like in people. You can have someone who has something wrong in the head. You can't predict it."

Rep. Sean Williams, R-Watertown, like many residents, expressed shock and sadness the boy was injured, and said a person's life should be of greater value than an animal's.

Williams got involved in the case last year when he and Senate Republican leader Louis C. DeLuca, R-Woodbury, proposed a law to expedite appeals in dog cases.

Lawmakers passed the bill, dubbed Max's Law, which requires the state agriculture department to review and rule on a dog appeal case within 60 days. The old regulation gave the state more than 90 days to decide.

"We didn't try to micromanage the police department's decision or the town's decision," Williams said. "This is something that was in the hands of experts.

There was a lot of emotion over this issue last year and a lot of public outcry. In this type of situation, you have to leave it in the hands of the experts."

That said, dogs will always be unpredictable, according to Ogren, who has nurtured many in his home.

"We were all wrong on Max. We don't know why we were wrong, but we were," he said. "There's something unseen here that's not the norm."

Southbury Bureau Chief Chris Gardner contributed to this report.
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Subject:God I need to move.
Time:11:24 pm
Anyone remeber Max the dog? The dog that bit his owner, was sentenced to die, and then was saved? Remember. In case anyone missed the news tonight, he was put down today around 7 o'clock BECAUSE HE ATTACKED ANOTHER CHILD. Whoever the kid is, he is in Waterbury Hospital with severe cuts on his face and skull. Oh and by the way he is going to need extensive plastic surgery to repair the damage.

Well don't we, as a town, feel ever so smart for putting up all those save Max signs, and holding meetings, and petitioning, and all that other shit that we, as a town, did?

I can't for the life of me figure out what it's going to take to get people in this town to take their heads out of their asses. Maybe a child being mauled.

Probably not, because last time it happened, we, as a town, rallied behind the dog, testified how harmless he was, and demanded that he be returned to his owners and to the general public where he belonged.

It figures it would take something this stupid to actually get Watertown on the news. Devino, Simonin, Max. God our town is so dumb.

I would also just like to put forth that I did not support Max, I actually wanted him put down the first time. And I'm sorry for stepping up on my soap box and probably offending alot of people.
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Time:11:00 pm
Current Mood:goodgood
Wow, you townies have a LJ Community.

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Time:10:40 pm
Current Mood:tiredtired
So about this parking fee. I think we should start talking. Personally, I really don't think we're going to find a way around paying it. Even if we reduce it, it'll probably decrease for next year's parkers.
I think we should all focus on getting this next budget passed on November 2nd.
Man, November 2nd is going to be the scariest day of my life...
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Time:04:37 pm
There is aboy named Rob guay. He is a silly boy, and he likes to smoke pot and smirk aobut his liberal intentions. He is never one to shirk duty or his cause, and went to protest at the RNC.

He was arrested there, and spent two nigths in jail. Thus ends another chapter in the ongoing and beautiful saga of Rob Guay's life.

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Current Music:someone blasting bob seger
Time:04:21 pm
Current Mood:frustratedfrustrated
Don't ever work at Marshalls.
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Subject:Thank you
Time:04:26 pm
Thank you to all of our dear & wonderful friends here in this crazy lil' town.

Dear Mr. Reynolds past away Thursday at about 12:30ish in the afternoon.

The details of the services & arrangements will be posted in my journal as soon as they are determined.

Thank you for all of your support & your hugs.

You guys are the best.
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Welcome to the home of LiveJournal Watertownians!
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