http://www.merrimackvotes.org/

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Postby Nat Fairbanks » Sun Feb 25, 2007 1:32 pm

Debra Huffman wrote:Bravo Dave! It takes guts to trust that this site will remain non-biased. You have given them that trust and I believe they will not disappoint you. This is a great community service and the effort should be applauded.


I have to echo Debra's comments here. When I first saw the post about this site I checked it out and was very impressed. I then checked the domain name registration and saw that Brian was behind the site. That removed any doubt in my mind that the site would remain neutral and was worthy of being made a sticky topic on this forum. Any resident who remembers the original forum, run as part of the town web site must recall that Brian was the admin on that site and should have no doubt that he will do an excellent job with merrimackvotes.org.

-Nat
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Postby andysinnh » Sun Feb 25, 2007 2:20 pm

Dave- thanks very much for doing this (and apologies for not realizing you had done it). :D

We're trying very hard to make it completely unbiased, and have a plan on going forward with contacting both papers and other avenues to increase awareness. Brian has done an outstanding job of putting this site together, and he's gotten a lot of content help from both town officials as well as town residents. It seems that everyone who visits the site picks up some information about the process they didn't know before (be they a newbie or a seasoned town resident), and that's the sign of success!!!

The site is evolving, and Brian will be updating it more over the coming weeks as we go thru the DS processes and the general election in April.

andy
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Postby Brian McCarthy » Sun Feb 25, 2007 3:29 pm

M@ wrote:You're site might work well as a Wiki.

M@


I expect that many people are not ready for a Wiki.

Brian
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Candidates: Need some Email addresses!

Postby Brian McCarthy » Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:25 pm

I'm about to send out an email to candidates asking them to answers
some questions which will be posted on http://www.merrimackvotes.org

However, I'd prefer to do this all at once and many of the candidates have
already contacted me through http://www.merrimackvotes.org expressing their
interest, but not all.

If you are a candidate reading this, and your name is below, or if
someone on this forum knows the email addresses for these people, could
you either email me at brian at mccarthyplace.com or even better have
them email me at that address? (of course take out the spaces and
replace the "at" with the @).

This will save me some phone calls further digging.

Thanks,

Brian

Jen Twardosky
Dan Dwyer
Bill Chaussee
Michael Pelletier
Andrew Sylvia
Joe Vliet
Bradford Stull
Norm Phillips
Kyle Annutto
Nicole Ponti
Ann Burrows
Chris Christensen
Dan Coutiere
Chip Keller
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Postby RBarnes » Wed Mar 14, 2007 12:39 pm

Brian, who is coming up with the list of questions?

The reason I ask is because groups can phrase questions in such a way to favor one group of people over another. The questions I received last year when I ran for school board from the teachers union was a perfectly good example. But in their case it was clear what their bias was so I didn't see it as a problem. In the case of Merrimack Votes you claim to be a non bias group so if the same school board candidate who is running your mailings is also the one coming up with the questions to ask, well that clearly shows a bias since I doubt very much she would pick questions that might put her in a bad light, wouldn't you agree?
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Postby Brian McCarthy » Wed Mar 14, 2007 1:00 pm

"you claim" - thanks... - smiley left off

I have come up with the questions and sent them out to the 'friends' list of people who have put their name into the site already. There have been revisions made from those responses and there are still other people I have asked for review that I have not heard from.

I have not posted them anywhere yet simply because if there are further changes to be made, I do not want to re-ask a candidate a question. I want the same set to everyone at once.

Make sense?

Brian
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Re: Candidates: Need some Email addresses!

Postby Andy Sylvia » Wed Mar 14, 2007 2:44 pm

Brian McCarthy wrote:I'm about to send out an email to candidates asking them to answers
some questions which will be posted on http://www.merrimackvotes.org

However, I'd prefer to do this all at once and many of the candidates have
already contacted me through http://www.merrimackvotes.org expressing their
interest, but not all.

If you are a candidate reading this, and your name is below, or if
someone on this forum knows the email addresses for these people, could
you either email me at brian at mccarthyplace.com or even better have
them email me at that address? (of course take out the spaces and
replace the "at" with the @).

This will save me some phone calls further digging.

Thanks,

Brian

Jen Twardosky
Dan Dwyer
Bill Chaussee
Michael Pelletier
Andrew Sylvia
Joe Vliet
Bradford Stull
Norm Phillips
Kyle Annutto
Nicole Ponti
Ann Burrows
Chris Christensen
Dan Coutiere
Chip Keller


Brian,

My email is mailto:andrewsylvia@gmail.com
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Postby andysinnh » Wed Mar 14, 2007 3:50 pm

RBarnes wrote:Brian, who is coming up with the list of questions?

The reason I ask is because groups can phrase questions in such a way to favor one group of people over another. The questions I received last year when I ran for school board from the teachers union was a perfectly good example. But in their case it was clear what their bias was so I didn't see it as a problem. In the case of Merrimack Votes you claim to be a non bias group so if the same school board candidate who is running your mailings is also the one coming up with the questions to ask, well that clearly shows a bias since I doubt very much she would pick questions that might put her in a bad light, wouldn't you agree?

Rick - I can share with you that I saw an early draft of these questions, and they were anything but biased. If anything, they closely resemble the questions asked from a typical newspaper summary of candidates' views. As we said up front, this is a neutral, unbiased site (regardless of where some individuals may fall politically) - and the goal is passing information to the voters - I think you'll see that your fears are unfounded. Don't always assume everything is partisan....

andy
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MVD Warrant online

Postby Brian McCarthy » Fri Mar 23, 2007 7:50 am

I scanned in the MVD articles from their Annual Report last night and they are
online at

http://www.merrimackvotes.org

The MVD Annual Meeting is this coming Tuesday at the JMUES APR (7PM).

Also, candidate information is coming in, and in some cases it appears the request for responses are being ignored, but I can't force people to respond.

I will be getting the Town Ballot online over the weekend similar to what is
now available on the site for the School District.

Brian
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Postby Linda Nickerson » Fri Mar 23, 2007 8:13 am

Just want to give you, Brian and Andy, additional kudos for the Merrimack Votes site.

It is as you said, a completely non-partisan site than contains valuable information for the voters of this town.

GREAT job!
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Postby Wayne » Mon Mar 26, 2007 5:36 pm

I think the candidate questionnaire provides the everyday voter a chance to hear directly from the candidate, and I hope the rest of them have the courtesy to respond.

I know Jennifer T, for example, has mailed information to her private list, and has sent letters to the Merrimack Journal, which I don't receive in the mail and don't seem to be able to find at any local markets. This would be her chance to get more of her message out - I can't imagine a more unbiased venue, and it would show she's attempting to appeal to a wider audience. Same for you Michael P, are you going to let anyone know your intended role on the BC?

Andy and Brian, and everyone involved, you're providing a great service to Merrimack. Thanks again.
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Postby andysinnh » Mon Mar 26, 2007 6:06 pm

Wayne wrote:I think the candidate questionnaire provides the everyday voter a chance to hear directly from the candidate, and I hope the rest of them have the courtesy to respond.

I know Jennifer T, for example, has mailed information to her private list, and has sent letters to the Merrimack Journal, which I don't receive in the mail and don't seem to be able to find at any local markets. This would be her chance to get more of her message out - I can't imagine a more unbiased venue, and it would show she's attempting to appeal to a wider audience. Same for you Michael P, are you going to let anyone know your intended role on the BC?

Andy and Brian, and everyone involved, you're providing a great service to Merrimack. Thanks again.

Wayne, I too was sort of wondering why Jenn T, Dan D, Rick B and Michael P didn't post their info on the site. I know that even though a few of us came up with the idea for the voter info site, Brian has been the one running the show, and isn't sharing any of the input from other candidates with anyone at all - just taking the data he gets and putting it up on the site - I see it the same time everyone else does. There isn't a more unbiased source of info that I know of. And if anyone is thinking that isn't true, I'd love for them to point out anything on the site that might not be unbiased - because Brian would correct it in a heartbeat!!!

andy
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Postby Brian McCarthy » Mon Mar 26, 2007 7:24 pm

I'll get something out on the site shortly but all the candidates mentioned below were contacted and offered the chance to respond. They are not the only ones who did not respond.

I only failed to contact two people - which for the first time around isn't bad.

Brian

andysinnh wrote:
Wayne wrote:I think the candidate questionnaire provides the everyday voter a chance to hear directly from the candidate, and I hope the rest of them have the courtesy to respond.

I know Jennifer T, for example, has mailed information to her private list, and has sent letters to the Merrimack Journal, which I don't receive in the mail and don't seem to be able to find at any local markets. This would be her chance to get more of her message out - I can't imagine a more unbiased venue, and it would show she's attempting to appeal to a wider audience. Same for you Michael P, are you going to let anyone know your intended role on the BC?

Andy and Brian, and everyone involved, you're providing a great service to Merrimack. Thanks again.

Wayne, I too was sort of wondering why Jenn T, Dan D, Rick B and Michael P didn't post their info on the site. I know that even though a few of us came up with the idea for the voter info site, Brian has been the one running the show, and isn't sharing any of the input from other candidates with anyone at all - just taking the data he gets and putting it up on the site - I see it the same time everyone else does. There isn't a more unbiased source of info that I know of. And if anyone is thinking that isn't true, I'd love for them to point out anything on the site that might not be unbiased - because Brian would correct it in a heartbeat!!!

andy
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Postby RBarnes » Tue Mar 27, 2007 3:25 pm

andysinnh wrote:Wayne, I too was sort of wondering why Jenn T, Dan D, Rick B and Michael P didn't post their info on the site.


I have been out of town a while only being able to check in once in a while. I just submitted the answers.
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Postby andysinnh » Tue Mar 27, 2007 6:31 pm

RBarnes wrote:
andysinnh wrote:Wayne, I too was sort of wondering why Jenn T, Dan D, Rick B and Michael P didn't post their info on the site.


I have been out of town a while only being able to check in once in a while. I just submitted the answers.

Cool!

This is sort of the online version of candidate profiles like in the newspapers. Good source for folks like my dad who tend to read web pages in the weeeeee hours of the morning. :D

andy
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