My pals at the Local Government Center (aka NHMA) have “both of them in a wringer,” to coin an old expression.
Story here: http://www.sos.nh.gov/securities/Press_Releases/PRESSR_2011-05-11.pdf
And ain’t it about time!
CNHT being a taxpayer oriented organization pits us most often in the opposite corner of the arena as NHMA – The NH MUNICIPAL Association, emphasis on municipal, not taxpayer.
And as is the case in most cases when you have a bureaucracy like NHMA all you need do is reverse the meaning of the name of such government agency and you have a perfect description of what they do not do - in this case represent the best interests of New Hampshire municipalities.
It looks like they have been skimming a bit off the top of the “cheap” insurance they buy at group rates for NH municipalities.
They are caught, too bad, and want to spend a ton of that loot on attorney fees rather than just return it to taxpayers through the municipalities that over-paid.
Sounds like something a municipality would do?
I will try to make this simple.
CNHT has a beef with NHMA/LGC going back a few years to Ashland where after the Ashland Town Clerk was caught “missapropriating” some $2 million. One of the selectmen of the two remaining from the debacle testified what a great town clerk the crook was.
Problem: He was an employee of NHMA, the company insuring the loss!
Sound like double dealing?
It does to me.
I can name a few more events CNHT has information on regarding inside dealing with insurance money and local politics but there is not enough space here so let us put it this way: NHMA can, as the insurance agent in most municipalities, pick winners and losers in political battles among taxpayers and public officials.
Here is a sample scam:
Popular municipal employees comes up against some opponent (like maybe CNHT member or like minded taxpayer activist) and suddenly an offer of a quiet settlement is made by the insurance company (NHMA/LGC) which makes the popular municipal employee look like the winner of a court settlement.
The headline in the local paper: Town Insurance Co. pays popular municipal employee settlement!
Presto, you have a “winner.”
But should some taxpayer bring a suit or complaint against a municipality, the sky is the limit in legal fees opposing that schmuck.
Here is to NHMA/LGC fighting this skimming case all the way and taxpayers getting a peek into how this organization really operates.
I hope their day has come.