Thursday, November 13, 2014

SWORN AFFIDAVIT OF DWIGHT E. HINES IN SUPPORT OF APPELLANT MICHAEL WEAVER



IN THE TOWN OF LIVERMORE,
COUNTY OF ANDROSCOGGIN, 
THE STATE OF MAINE

SWORN AFFIDAVIT OF DWIGHT E. HINES IN SUPPORT OF APPELLANT MICHAEL WEAVER
BEFORE ME, the undersigned authority, personally appeared this day, Dwight E. Hines, who, after being duly cautioned and sworn, deposes and says:
1) The undersigned is the affiant. I have personal knowledge of all matters set forth in this affidavit.
2) I am over 18 years of age and of sound mind and body.
3) My residence is 42 Israelson Road, Livermore, Maine 04253, telephone number 207-897-2032.
4) I am a registered voter, tax payer, and a permanent resident of Livermore, Maine.
5) I regularly attend the Livermore Board of Selectmen?s meetings.
6) I participate in the Selectmen?s meetings verbally and in written submissions.
7) I regularly publicly record the entire Livermore Board of Selectmen?s meetings with my solid state camera mounted on a tripod.
8) I have published letters and columns in local online news outlets (Lisbon Reporter; Lisbon Maine), in a local weekly newspaper (Livermore Falls Advertiser), and on national Freedom of Information listservs, blogs, news, and civic engagement sites, as well as published research in national and international peer-reviewed scientific journals.
9) I am a member of Investigative Reporters and Editors (www.ire.org, ID # 22350).
10) I have argued, as a plaintiff and/or intervenor before Florida State Courts in support of freedom of information components in homicide and other types of trials.
11) Mr. Rodney Newman is an elected member of the Board of Selectmen. 12) Mr. Rodney Newman is paid for his services as a Selectman.
13) At a recent Board of Selectmen?s meeting, Mr. Newman stated that the only requirements for the minutes of the meetings were that the minutes include motions and votes.
14) I disagreed with Mr. Newman and asked him if he obtained that opinion in writing. 15) Mr. Newman stated that he did not have the opinion in writing.
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16) Mr. Kachnovich, an elected member of the Livermore Board of Selectmen, was at the same meeting.
17) Mr. Kachnovich stated that he had seen what Mr. Newman said about the minutes, in a powerpoint display.
18) Mr. Kachnovich he did not identify the source or the person who presented the opinion in the powerpoint.
19) Maine law requires that selectmen take a course on Maine?s Freedom of Access Act within two months of their election.
20) Mr. Newman did not take his required course after more than a year, and only after I filed a complaint with the Ombudsman for Maine?s FOAA, Ms. Brenda Kielty, an attorney who is located in the Office of the Maine Attorney General.
21) Mr. Newman has stated in selectmen?s meetings that Federal and State laws are not applicable to decisions and actions taken in selectmen?s meetings in Livermore, Maine.
22) Mr. Newman?s motion to stop public participation in selectmen?s meetings was not supported by the Board of Selectmen.
23) Mr. Newman?s rants and raves against public participation, that are not based in law, practice, or custom in Livermore or other Maine towns, have a chilling effect on citizen attendance, discussion, and engagement in Selectmen?s meetings.
24) Often, I am the only Livermore private citizen at the Selectmen?s meetings.
25) The Town of Livermore, with the exception of the excellent work of the Town Clerk, Ms. Renda Guild, has repeatedly been unable to find documents such as contracts for substantial amounts of money (greater than $45,000).
26) The Town of Livermore maintenance of records required by law is best characterized as “Loosey-Goosey”, with the exception of Ms. Guild.
27) Livermore has a new Administrative Assistant, Ms. Carrie Castonguay, who is working hard to automate the record and communication systems but the disorganization she inherited is so great that the Town has been notified, as a courtesy, that a civil suit, pursuant to Maine FOAA, will be filed in Maine Superior Court, in about 7 days.
28) Livermore has a pattern and practice over the last few years of not requiring competitive bidding for many of their purchases, including borrowing $250,000 dollars for paying bills while waiting for taxpayers to pay their bills.
29) The lack of competitive bids has cost Livermore taxpayers substantial amounts of unnecessary money, with estimates ranging to over $150,000 per year.
30) The lack of competitive bids results in a failure to stimulate competition and innovation in the Livermore and other Maine areas.
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31) The lack of competitive bids has created the perception, if not the reality, in some taxpayers minds that contracts are awarded in Livermore by bias not on merit.
32) Records of individuals or organizations who bid for past contracts are unable to be located when I recently requested them pursuant to Maine FOAA.
33) I have no special knowledge of Mr. Michael Weaver, having only met him at the initial hearing about 2 months ago, for renewal of his liquor license for the Carriage House Restaurant.
34) I have never eaten at Mr. Michael Weaver?s restaurant, though I drive by the Carriage House numerous times per week.
35) I do not own stock or shares in the Carriage House.
36) I do not conduct, nor have I ever conducted business of any type with the Carriage House or Mr. Michael Weaver.
37) I was present at all the selectmen?s meetings about the renewal of the Carriage House Restaurant.
38) The letter to the State claiming that Mr. Weaver was denied a renewal of the liquor license because he has engaged in misleading and false practices is in error.
39) Many of the Mr. Weaver?s previous applications for liquor license renewal that show a pattern of short, summary responses, such as “drugs”, to the application question can not be located.
40) The SBI report on Mr. Michael Weaver that the denial letter refers to has, on its cover page (page 1 of 24) the statement:
“If the information contained in this response will be used to disqualify an applicant for employment, housing, or credit, the person making the eligibility determination should provide the applicant with an opportunity to complete or contest the accuracy of the criminal history information in this response.”
41) The SBI report on Mr. Michael Weaver states, on its first page,
“When a criminal history record and juvenile crime information record check is processed by the State Bureau of Identification using personal identifiers such as name and date of birth, it is possible that the record supplied belongs to another person with the same or essentially similar name and date of birth. Assurance that the person sought are one and the same requires verification through fingerprint comparison.”
42) There are no fingerprint comparisons in the SBI report, indeed, just the opposite is stated in capital letters in the SBI report, page 2:
THE FOLLOWING ATN(S) ARE UNSUPPORTED BY FINGERPRINTS IN STATE BUREAU OF IDENTIFICATION FILES (309502A, 309826A, 309813A). (CRSA).” [Capitalization as in the SBI report]
43) There are no fingerprint comparisons in any format provided by the Board of Selectmen or anyone else.
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44) The SBI report on Mr. Weaver states on pages 1 & 2, that there are a number of criminal offenses not included in the SBI report:
“It [SBI report] does not include Class D or E crimes in Title 12 or Title 29-A, formerly Title 29, unless the crime is alcohol-related or drug-related [25 M.R.S.A. 1541.4-A.A] and certain former crimes no longer classified as criminal.”
45) In the first hearing, when Mr. Newman and Mr. Kachnovich were struggling to explain exactly how and what they wanted in Mr. Michael Weaver?s answer to the specific question about arrests, Mr. Kachnovich finally stated that he wanted the title of the charge filed against Mr. Weaver.
46) At no time did they ask for him to list his arrests and convictions.
47) Given the disorganized and informal system for records created and maintained by the Town of Livermore as a point of reference (norm) for expected accuracy and completeness, including records for Mr. Kachnovich?s and Mr. Newman?s written contracts, Mr. Weaver did not mislead or falsify documents filed with the Board.
48) Relying on an SBI report, and distributing it to the public, when the SBI report state specifically not to use it is a violation of due process and fair practice;
49) I sat down with the SBI report on Mr. Weaver, with paper and pen to try and figure out its meaning. After 45 minutes I gave up.
50) Mr. Weaver was not given any notice that the SBI report, a report he had never seen and possibly containing multiple errors, would be used as evidence against him and remember, the offenses were over 14 years ago, with some being much older.
51) At the last selectmen?s meeting, where the selectmen were discussing issues maybe related to the license renewal in three different places in the room on three different topics, the reporter from the local paper had to wave her hand and tell them I can?t get all this (paraphrase).
52) At the last selectmen?s meeting where the license renewal was being discussed, the Livermore Administrative Assistant, Ms. Carrie Castonguay, had to wave both her hands in the air and say “Whoa!” [paraphrase] because she was trying to take notes on the discussion and so many people were talking on different topics in different parts of the room at once that she couldn?t keep track of it all.
53) I have been in many courtrooms inside and outside the United States and have never witnessed such an absence of fairness and due process, though Guatemala comes to mind.
54) The procedures of the selectmen to determine facts rather than present inadmissible records were accompanied by about the same level of organization, noise and disturbance that could be found in a university fraternity house on a Friday night.
55) After the last meeting ended, I went up to Mr. Kachnovich and told him that he was changing the rules for license renewals. Mr. Kachnovich replied that if I knew what he knew, I?d understand.
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56) I replied to Mr. Kachnovich that that information he knows needs to be out in the open so we could deal with it.
57) Mr. Kachnovich replied that he could not do that.
59) Mr. Kachnovich?s remarks show that he is biased against Mr. Weaver.
60) Mr. Kachnovich should have recused himself in the discussions and votes on Mr. Weaver?s license renewal.
61) As of November 1, 2014, the USSC new guidelines for sentencing drug violations went into effect. See below.
62) It is expected that the new guidelines on sentencing are not only much easier to compute but much less harsh than the pre-November 1, 2014 guidelines, with approximately 45,000 prisoners being released early because the changes are to be applied retroactively.
63) The U.S. Judicial System has, in effect, put Mr. Weaver, and thousands of others, in line for a pardon for drug related crimes committed over 14 years ago
64) Given that the present controversy centers on one application item/question, it would be helpful to the appeals board and to the Board of Selectmen to review the reliability and validity tests that were conducted on the different items as they relate to each other and to the overall application in accounting for variance.
65) I have personally designed and developed tests for different behavioral and written tests and the variation in responses can indicate that an item should be reworded or placed in a different part (context) of the test.
66) Given that the application item may show high error variance, thus producing results similar to Mr. Weavers in different towns and counties that are not related to quality or quantity of arrests or to applicant integrity, it is entirely possible that Ms. Kachnovich and Mr. Newman and Mr. Weaver all have veridical interpretations of the situation.
67) Given that the application item does not have enough space for Mr. Weaver to write much more than a one word response and given that one word responses were adequate for the past twelve years, an adequate correction to the application may simply be to place the words (“List All arrests and Convictions, Use Extra pages If Necessary”) underneath the blank line.
68) I will make a Maine FOAA public records request to the Maine Department of Liquor Licensing for the data on the liquor licensing application?s development and field testing for reliability, validity (internal, external, and ecological) of the application and the validity and reliability determinations for the overall test and the application item causing the problems.
69) If there are no objective, empirical measures of the liquor license application and item in question, generally accepted statistical methods, meeting or exceeding all the Maine and Federal Court requirements, including Daubert, et al, and their daughters, could be used by neutral individuals who are not known to Weaver, Newman, or Kachnovich, possibly having the students in a “Tests and Measurements” class at UM or UMF take on the task as a class project.
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70) The results of having a liquor license application project would be to produce an application with unambigous items that are not misleading to the applicants, or Board, with the completed student project being given to the Livermore Board and the Maine Liquor Commission for their use.


71) Further, affiant sayeth not.


The foregoing instrument was acknowledged before me this _10th   day of
November, 2014, by Dwight Hines, who is personally known to me or has produced
 Maine Driver's License Number 874065 as identification and who did swear an oath.

signature


RENDA J. GUILD 
Notary Public, Maine

NOTARY PUBLIC

My DOW/1185ton Expires June 6, 2020



ATTACHMENT 1
New post on Hercules and the umpire.
Hard core federal sentencing nerds know that November 1 is a special day because it is the official date on which any proposed changes to the sentencing guidelines proposed by the US Sentencing Commission become official in the absence of congressional rejection thereof. Tomorrow, November 1, 2014, is especially notable because it will make official the most significant and consequential reduction in guideline sentencing ranges in history. This USSC press release, which includes a statement from the chair of the USSC, provides background context for why this is such a big deal:
[Background:] The United States Sentencing Commission, an independent agency in the judicial branch charged with setting federal sentencing guidelines, voted unanimously in April to reduce sentencing guidelines levels for most drug trafficking offenses and voted unanimously again in July to make that change retroactive. Because Congress has not acted to disapprove the Commission’s actions, the amendment becomes effective tomorrow. Offenders sentenced after tomorrow will be sentenced under the new, reduced guidelines, and current prisoners may begin petitioning courts for sentence reductions based on retroactive application of the reduced guidelines. Prisoners can have their sentences reduced if courts determine that they are eligible and a reduction is appropriate, and they may not be released pursuant to such reductions before November 1, 2015.[Comment by USSC Chair Patti Saris:] “The reduction in drug guidelines that becomes effective tomorrow represents a significant step toward the goal the Commission has prioritized of reducing federal prison costs and overcrowding without endangering public safety. Commissioners worked together to develop an approach that advances the causes of fairness, justice, fiscal responsibility, and public safety, and I am very pleased that we were able to agree unanimously on this reasonable solution. I am also gratified that Congress permitted this important reform to go forward.
This amendment is an important start toward addressing the problem of over-incarceration at the federal level. Commission researchers estimate that applying the amendment going forward may reduce the prison population by 6,500 in five years and far more over time, while more than 46,000 current prisoners could be eligible to have their sentences reduced by retroactive application of the amendment. Still, only Congress
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can act to fully solve the crisis in federal prison budgets and populations and address the many systemic problems the Commission has found resulting from mandatory minimum penalties. I hope that Congress will act promptly to pass comprehensive sentencing reform legislation.”http://www.ussc.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/news/press-releases-and- news-advisories/news-advisories/20141031_News_Advisory.pdf
Today, I will take a moment to describe the implementation of Amendment 782 in the District of Nebraska. We are a small district with a large criminal case load, especially including drug cases. As of June 30, 2014, on a per-judge basis, we ranked seventh in the nation and first in the Eighth Circuit for criminal cases. Indeed, Amendment 782 may impact over 700 offenders previously sentenced in our court. Behind the scenes, the implementation of Amendment 782 has had a huge impact on us as we try to fully and fairly implement this important retroactive change to the Guidelines.*
With 700 offenders potentially eligible for a sentencing reduction, our district decided that every potentially eligible offender would have his or her case individually scrutinized whether or not a motion had been filed and that every such offender would have a lawyer. After conferring with the United States Attorney, the Federal Public Defender and our probation office, we issued general (standing) orders. For example, here is the general order that was issued for all judges (save for me**):
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