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Welcome to the NEW Atkinson Reporter! Under new management, with new resolve.

The purpose of this Blog is to pick up where the Atkinson Reporter has left off. "The King is dead, Long live the King!" This Blog is a forum for the discussion of predominantly Atkinson; Officials, People, Ideas, and Events. You may give opinion, fact, or evaluation, but ad hominem personal attacks will not be tolerated, or published. The conversation begun on the Atkinson Reporter MUST be continued!

This Blog will not fall to outside hacks from anyone, especially insecure public officials afraid of their constituents criticism.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Separation of police and elder affairs is overdue

From the Eagle Tribune;

Our view: Separation of police and elder affairs is overdue

The Atkinson, N.H. Police Department and Elderly Affairs Program are now officially separate.

It's about time.

It has been years since residents began questioning both the ethics and the legality of police Chief Philip Consentino also being the director of elderly affairs, controlling various donation accounts to both departments and personally selecting who gets money from them.

It has been months since the New Hampshire attorney general said the practice was illegal.

But it took until this past week for the Board of Selectmen to sign off on a plan to separate the two departments, which includes numerous rules and regulations to comply with state law. Consentino will continue as volunteer director of the elder program, but must answer to selectmen.

Consentino argued for years that there was nothing wrong with the way he collected and spent donations to the Police Department and for elderly assistance.

And he has remained popular in town, particularly among senior citizens.

Consentino has conducted a donation drive each year, sending out solicitations on police letterhead.

The money collected is distributed among the Special Senior Fund, the Atkinson Police Department Donation/Equipment Fund and the DARE fund.

But popularity does not trump the law. Terry Knowles, assistant director of the AG's charitable trust unit, recommended that besides separating the jobs of police chief and elderly affairs director, that a system be established for determining who receives money.

So the board of directors of a new nonprofit, the Atkinson Police Charitable Fund, will administer disbursements and issue annual, public reports on account balances and activity.

Finally, the drivers who perform services for elders — a group of retired men — will stop wearing police uniforms.

Consentino deserves credit for his civic activism, but it will be better for him — and for those he says he wants to serve — for the management and distribution of charitable donations to be transparent and decided by a set of standards, not the discretion of one individual.


Anonymous said...

A Nice factual honest view, and not deserving of Phil's childish petty sniping reply.

Grow Up!

Anonymous said...

And yes I made that comment anonymously so that You, Phil, can't do anything about it!

Anonymous said...

When will his lies be challenged is what I want to know. Selectmen meeting minutes do not support his claims.

Anonymous said...

they never do, but unless you take him to court, no one will admit it.

Anonymous said...

That doesnt work either! Acciard took him to court in 05 and won! and no one will admit that either! And we paid for all of it! His appeals, his contempt order, all ofit!

Anonymous said...

Yes, very nice factual report.

It affirms his electioneering, the conflict of interest in running two depts., his personal bias and prejudice of who gets the so-called town services and other misc. BS.

He is NOT popular in town since the news of his shady dealings broke, he is a real disappointment to the residents, especially the elderly, who are being used and misled.

Oh, the ET forgot to mention two other funds that are noted in the Town Report!... The Life is Not Done Foundation and the Senior Donation account....he speaks of these as separate funds throughout history. Last word, the AG is still investigating these funds.