15 Sep 2014
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Temple Thanks Town Crews for Unselfish Efforts During Storm

The first selectman takes issue with critics of DPW workers, comes to their defense.

Temple Thanks Town Crews for Unselfish Efforts During Storm

I want to take this opportunity to thank our town emergency service volunteers and especially our public works department employees for the unselfish effort they made during Storm Nemo. I am proud of our public works employees and the dedication that they showed when the chips were down.

It is easy to snipe from the warm comfort of your computer room, but I was with our plowers during the height of the storm. Our guys worked well over 50 hours straight (with short breaks in-between)  to make sure all of Oxford was safe.

You have no idea what our public works break-room smells like when nine guys are airing their socks. They lived on donuts and cookies or whatever they could scrounge together. We had equipment that had major malfunctions but our mechanic made the repairs and sent them back out. Our guys got testy with each other, as anyone would with hard work and no sleep but they all pulled together for the good of the town.

Oxford has 120 miles of roads and I travelled over all of it. Anywhere I rode I saw the product of a group of professionals who genuinely take their job seriously.

If I am to be criticized for having private roads or driveways plowed, so be it. I am ultimately responsible for the health and safety of all Oxford people and I take that responsibility very seriously. If someone called me and stated that they were elderly or had a medical issue, I responded and sent help.

I received some complaints but most people were very happy with the effort. The only time I got a little emotional was when I saw the signs on the town hall door that said, “Sandy Hook Loves Oxford.’’ That put our inconvenience in perspective for me.

- From Oxford First Selectman George Temple 


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