Home > Uncategorized > Why is a major state budget hearing being held during a major snowstorm?

Why is a major state budget hearing being held during a major snowstorm?

I’m not sure if the members of the House and Senate Ways & Means Committees are aware of this, but it appears there is a major snowstorm going on this morning.

There’s probably a foot and a half of snow out here where I live in Hvad in Central Mass., and I understand there’s close to a foot of snow accumulation in Boston.

Yet, it appears the joint Ways and Means Committees are going ahead this morning with a major public hearing on the state budget.  As the communications person for COFAR, I was planning on attending the hearing and presenting testimony on our FY 14 legislative priorities.

The hearing began at 10 a.m.  The problem is, the snow has been coming down all morning; it’s now past 11, and I’ve spent the last hour digging my car out of my driveway.  I’m taking a break to write this.  I’m assuming there are others who were planning to attend this hearing who are in the same situation as I am.  

As a result, a few questions have occurred to me:  Why is a major public hearing on the state budget being held during a major snowstorm?  Why wasn’t it rescheduled?  Doesn’t this demonstrate a disregard for the public on the part of some of our key elected officials?

By the way, why hasn’t governor announced a travel ban in the state?  If he did, would the Ways and Means Committees still hold their “public” hearing anyway?

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  1. Anonymous
    March 8, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    Just like the governor did during a snow storm when he announced Fernald’s closure – he’s hoping he gets away with it. Who would be there in this storm? And I was also wondering why there wasn’t another illegal travel ban. More of the same …


  2. jack
    March 9, 2013 at 2:59 am

    Agree wholeheartedly with Mr Kassel’s comments. Unfortunately how The Ways & Means have proceeded while the Public is trying to dig out smells like the status quo. Doing dirty deals while nobody’s paying attention?


  3. March 9, 2013 at 2:26 pm

    There was no travel ban, I am a state employee and had to literally struggle on icy, snow covered roads to fight my way into work—where I sat at my desk all day watching the snow come down. Activities here were cancelled.


  4. jack
    March 9, 2013 at 7:10 pm

    To hold a hearing on a topic that affects so many citizens speaks to the lack of regard for public input.What else is new?


  5. Cheryl Felak
    April 20, 2013 at 8:11 pm

    In Washington State in 2011, there was a bill regarding the future of our ICF/IDs. There has been much tension regarding this bill as many others are experiencing throughout our country.

    Senator Adam Kline, the sponsor of SSB 5459, resurrected this reconstituted bill for a “hearing” with just 20 minutes notice for a PUBLIC HEARING just a couple of days before the end of an extended legislative session. Several legislators noted that they did not have time to read it but that made no difference to Senator Kline as he forged ahead with this destruction.

    This tactic was not part of the democratic process as I understand it but trickery on the part of this Senator.

    In order to have democracy, we need to allow our public to comment. In both the situation of not cancelling meetings when the weather makes it unsafe for the public to engage in the process or by calling public comments with lack of notice for the public to respond, go against democracy.


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