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Monday, September 28, 2020

Charlestown Voters asked to support Council Candidates

Please support these Charlestown Democrats

By Catherine O’Reilly Collette, Chair of the Charlestown Democratic Town Committee

On behalf of the Charlestown Democratic Town Committee, I am proud to endorse and support the three fine Democrats on the November 3 ballot for Charlestown Town Council: Deb Carney, Jodi Frank and Scott Keeley.

Each of these individuals bring experience and talent that will serve the people of Charlestown well.

I have known Deb Carney for nearly 20 years, watched her chair the Council when we first moved to Charlestown, then admired her outstanding work on the Chariho School Committee. I consider her to be one of the most talented and hard-working public servants I have ever met. She currently serves as Council Vice-President and seeks re-election.

Jodi Frank served the town for six years as a member of the Parks and Recreation Commission, putting her Ph.D. in Kinesiology to good use by working on improvements in Ninigret Park and Charlestown’s public lands. She is currently finishing up her B.S. in Nursing and will be an RN early in 2021.  

I met Scott Keeley 15 years ago and have always loved his humor and breadth of knowledge. I admire the way he has taken on the issue of the people’s right to use the beach despite efforts by non-resident beachfront property owners to deny access.

For the past decade, Charlestown has been controlled by a single party: the Charlestown Citizens Alliance that was spawned by the Rhode Island Shoreline Coalition with its focus on the interests of absentee land-owners. They have raised our taxes just about every year since they’ve been in control, engaged in shady land deals, driven out small businesses and purged town commissions of anyone not a CCA loyalist.

Each election year, absentee property owners flood the CCA treasury with cash to try to sell Charlestown voters the same overblown story that we are under threat of unspeakable horrors to our rural way of life and only the CCA can keep us safe. You’ll see that message in the CCA flyers that will be filling your mailboxes.

It’s time to stop being driven by fear. We need to focus on positive ways to move forward: fair taxes, sensible land use, choosing qualified people for town boards and commissions and using town resources to help our community cope with the problems caused by the pandemic and a badly damaged economy.

I know Deb Carney, Jodi Frank and Scott Keeley are the best qualified people on the ballot to get the job done. I urge you to vote for them when you cast your ballot – by mail or in person - in this year’s election.