Censorship is STILL alive and well in West Vincent township. At the May 27 West Vincent Township meeting, several residents spoke about issues, totaling 17 minutes, starting at the beginning of the meeting. No less than 7 different subjects were raised, all with public discussion.  Here is the link to the video, please watch it as Public Comment is at the very beginning:

Yet the official minutes: http://westvincenttwp.org/home/images/Minutes/05-27-14_BOS_Minutes.pdf  state the following: Public Comment on Non-Agenda Items: "A number of residents made comments on items not on the agenda."  And that's it.

At the following meeting, June 9, the Public Comment section was 35 minutes which included no less than 8 different subjects, all with public discussion.  Here is the link to the video which starts at the beginning of the video: http://www.westvincenttwp.org/home/images/videos/BOS-Video-06-09-14%201.mp4

Here is how it was reflected in the minutes (http://westvincenttwp.org/home/images/Minutes/BOS-Minutes-06-09-14.pdf)  state the following: "Public Comment on Non-Agenda Items:
A number of residents made comments on items not on the agenda."

That's it. Both meetings included a total of almost one hour of Public Comment and the only thing stated in the minutes is that there were comments by residents. No names, no subjects listed. NOTHING.

I have spoken about this issue of the attempts and successes of Censorship in West Vincent before. Here are some of the highlights from my website:

26 February, 2012
4 March, 2012
17 October, 2012
11 February, 2014. This specific report was about a meeting from January 27. As a glaring example of censorship in West Vincent Township,  those very minutes from January 27 in which Supervisor David Brown attempts to insert his personal policy about limiting public comment by not answering questions from specific people at the meeting are missing from the website.

Take a look: http://www.westvincenttwp.org/home/index.php/government/meetings-minutes/2014-township-meetings/192-1-27-14-board-of-supervisors-meeting-7-30-pm and here is a screenshot in case the township decides to modify their censorship.  The only place the page lists minutes is in the Quick link sidebar. If you click on that, it will take you back to a listing of meetings for the year, eventually bringing you back to the same view as this snapshot. Go ahead, try it.

Why is this subject so important? This Administration continues to attempt to keep valid information from the public. Discussions are happening in public that can be denied later by the administration if no record is kept, which is against the law. The Administration can say that nobody has ever mentioned anything about certain subjects. They can simply deny there have ever been any complaints and point confidently to the minutes, showing that there is nothing to prove otherwise. The Township can claim they had no knowledge of ever hearing whatever subject that was spoken about if there is no record. They can claim “the issue” was never brought to their attention. In fact, Just the fact that the minutes have been left off the website which includes the issue where David Brown tries to squelch public comment reflects that they are attempting to hide public comment is glaring. The very basis of our government is that everything is supposed to be done in public and a record is to be kept. We all know that it isn't always done properly at all levels of government but it is supposed to be. And if it the voters and citizens don't push back, they are all agreeing with what the West Vincent Administration is censoring by virtue of capitulation.

In fact, Supervisor David Brown was the person that during his campaign was the “champion” of rallying people to come to meetings, instructing the citizens to not listen to the "half truths" of an anonymous e-mailer, me, presumably. David Brown, as Supervisor for two years has never stopped his attempts to keep the truth from coming out or people from speaking up via censorship.

Lastly, there is now tax money being spent with the Township Counsel to develop a Township Policy for public comment. Sadly, all that is needed to reduce public comment is for the Township to do things properly and above board. The citizens will have less complaints and questions. But this Administration doesn't want important questions to be of public record. Therefore those questions will never exist and plausible denial-ability is in place to protect the Administration of West Vincent. I have said it before. Minutes are the official record of the government and it's actions in public meetings. If the minutes are manipulated, so is history. You and your neighbors concerns and public statements never happened. Be concerned.

Best wishes


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