'Railroaded Junction' T-shirts are available
at the Darkroom Gallery, 12 Main Street.
Town hesitated to disclose how much (and whose) money was spent on green t-shirts for staff and elected officials.
Bruce Post filed a Request for Public Information to discover that $400 was spent on pro-merger shirts.
Read his summary of that process here.
These black shirts are a direct response to the following t-shirt paid for with taxpayer dollars:
Green shirts were gifted to dozens of staff and elected officials, who attended an offsite retreat for planning the future of Essex, June 22, 2019.
Months before knowing the results of public surveys or focus groups aimed at learning how the public felt about Merger, the Village and Town govern- ments were unabashedly and exclusively pushing for Merger.
Several staff and elected officials eagerly donned the green shirts upon receiving them at the start of the day.
Imagine, if you would for a moment, how difficult it would
be for decision-makers to hear reports from Dept. Heads about the upsides and downsides of merger, when prominent audience members were already proclaiming their end goal.
Encouraging staff to become political active -- by wearing one-sided comments on a potential voting issue -- directly violates the policy in the Town of Essex Personnel Handbook:
An employee shall not publicize or promote Town employment in any activities and campaigns and shall not, in any manner, suggest that the employee represents any official position or support. (Section 6 (h), p. 12, Dec. 2017 revision)