Violation of the Public Trust at Onset Fire and Water District?

By OnsetTogether | Feb 02, 2018

Most of us have come to expect, if not accept, a level of partisanship and posturing from elected officials. Deliberate lying is beyond what we should tolerate.


Filling a vacancy on a committee steering the construction of a $9 million fire house is not the most important public appointment in the world.  But the Onset Fire and Water District Prudential Committee has overstepped the bounds of decency.


At the meeting of January 11, 2018, the Committee chairman stated they would fill the vacancy by first contacting those who had submitted written “applications,” i.e. letters of interest. That seemed reasonable. At the Building Committee meeting of January 23, 2018, Chairman and Water Commissioner Frank Kowzic had four letters of interest; and he responded to a direct question, “Have all of these applicants been contacted and indicated they still wish to be considered?” with “Yes they have.” He was looking directly at me, there was no misunderstanding the question nor the response. The letters were dated mid-2015. One applicant was present at the meeting, none had been asked to appear. After discussion, Ed Ransom, who was present, was selected to be put forth to the Prudential Committee as a candidate for appointment to the Building Committee.


At the January 25 meeting, Kowzic presented Mr. Ransom, who was not present, to the Prudential Committee for appointment. The Committee briefly discussed the other “applicants,” clearly stating one was not considered because he wished the fire station to remain in Onset Village and they felt “he had an agenda.” Obviously it is the Committee with an agenda. Again Kowzic stated the applicants had been contacted. However when asked who had made that contact, he launched into a diatribe about no they had not been contacted, he had no reason to do that, and if they did not wish to be considered “they would have taken their application out of the drawer” since 2015. He claimed that IF he had said they were, he had misspoken.

At that point, rather than go back to all of them or open up the process, the Committee chair chose to bring Mr. Ransom in for a perfunctory interview.


Mr. Kowzic's term expires on May 22, 2018.

Video here

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