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RE: Town government launches new sustainability division, funded by anonymous donor

June 17, 2024
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Seeing Town government funded by a) a donation from one rather than taxes from all, and b) an anonymous donor, sets off alarm bells in my mind.

How did this initiative come to be? Did the town set the agenda and then find a donor? Or is the agenda donor-driven? As both a professional fundraiser and a donor to numerous causes, a fundamental rule I follow is: Donors do NOT call the shots.

If four new hires are made based on this donation, what happens after the three-year grant is up, specifically, will budget be allocated to sustain this initiative rather than grow support of schools or emergency services, or will those people be let go? If the town had money available for four new hires, is this where it would be allocated in the absence of a donation, or are the communal priorities being shifted because targeted money is being offered?

Transparency is needed here. Even if it turns out to be perfectly legitimate, this seems like a set-up for undue influence and corruption.

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