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5 vie for assessor board, including selectmen's brother

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UPDATED, July 2: Five candidates have applied for the open position on the Board of Assessors. Among the four YourArlington can identify, one is Robert Greeley, a brother of a selectman and director of assessments for the town for 24 years until he retired in April 2011. The others are:

-- Patrick J. Quinn, who owns the Quinn Group Insurance Agency;

-- Stephen P. Reynolds, an attorney who works as a real-estate appraiser; and

-- Michael Stern, publisher of information about venture capital and the private-equity industry.


June 11: Background behind assessor openings


June 23 deadline to apply

Marie Krepelka, board administrator for the selectmen, declined to name the fifth candidate. She said if Bob Greeley remains a candidate at the time of the board vote, Kevin would have to recuse himself.

Selectmen Chairman Steve Byrne announced June 23 that a joint meeting of selectmen and assessors is set for 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 1, to name the choice for Board of Assessors.

Filling the board vacancy, which occurred when longtime member Jim Doherty resigned May 21, is a step that is expected to take place before the board chooses a director of assessments. That full-time position opened up April 18, when Speidel resigned. An agreement with the town says the reason should not be disclosed.

As of June 20, 14 had applied. Caryn Molloy, town human resources director, wrote June 19: "The pool remains confidential at this point. I would expect next week I will be able to provide a clearer projection on a timeline for the process."
 
The four Board of Assessor candidates who have been identified were asked to comment by Sunday, June 22. Statements by those who have responded as well as their resumes are provided below.

Loreti seeks minutes; some are posted

Meanwhile, in a related issue, Chris Loreti, a former Redevelopment Board member, filed an Open Meeting Law complaint on June 2, seeking seven sets minutes of Board of Assessors' meetings from 2014 as well as any draft minutes. The dates are Jan. 27, Feb. 10, March 10, April 7 and 28, May 12 and 19.

By Thursday, June 19, four sets of the requested minutes had been posted on the town's website. In one case, the meeting of April 28, the meeting was canceled. See them here and note the date posted >>

Loreti said June 24 that he had received the minutes he had requested.

Asked why he seeks those minutes, Loreti wrote June 19: "I wanted to find out if the minutes of the Board of Assessors shed any light on John Speidel's departure. At the time I made my request at the beginning of June, only two sets of minutes had been posted for all of 2014. I requested the minutes for all of the other 2014 meetings, in either draft or approved form, but didn't receive any response."

A review of the newly posted minutes makes no reference to Speidel's leaving.

How names were reported

As to how candidates for the Board of Assessors came to light, the first three names were posted June 9 to a "Town Square" board on Patch written by "Stephen." Read it here >>

The post does not cite the source for the information. The post's time was 2:18 p.m., hours before that evening's selectmen's meeting.

Krepelka agreed the three names were included in the selectmen's packet for the June 9 meeting, and thus were public information, but said June 20 that she does not recall anyone requesting the packet. Stern applied later.

One of four contacted responds

As of 9:25 p.m. p.m. Sunday, June 22, one of four candidates for the Board of Assessors had responded to a request for comment. Further responses will be added if candidates repond.

Candidates were asked why they are seeking the position and how they believe they could improve the board.

Stern wrote:

"The Board of Assessors' opening represents an extraordinary opportunity to bring a new leader to an important Town Office. As a 14-year resident of Arlington and Town Meeting member, I am deeply committed to the town, its current success and future growth.

"As a former stockbroker, I have substantial experience working with complex financial data. And as a current publisher of information on the venture capital and private-equity industry, I have a history of working with data, and transforming it for professional consumption.

"Research I have contributed to the Vision 2020 Fiscal Resources Task Group shows that commercial land values swing wildly from one contiguous property to another. As an Assessor I will bring a new level of transparency to the office, as well as apply greater scrutiny to our field assessment vendor and the methodologies they employ to determine fair market values for commercial properties."

Background of four candidates

Here are the resumes of four of five candidates, submitted to the selectmen's office, in alphabetical order:

Robert E. Greeley

Master of Business Administration, Babson College, 1976

Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (accounting), Babson College, 1972

Associate Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, Mass Bay Community College, 1970

MILITARY Medical Corps -- U.S. Air Force Reserve, 1967-1974

ASSESSING EXPERIENCE

Former Director of Assessments, Town of Arlington 1987-2011

Former member Board of Assessors, Town of Arlington 1985-1987

Former Chairman Board of Assessors, Town of Arlington 1986-1987

Former member Board of Assessors, City of Somerville, 1988-2003

Assessing Consultant, City of Everett 1995-1997, 2002-2004

Assessing Consultant, Town of Framingham 1991-1992

Assessing Consultant, Town of Natick 1993-1994

Qualified as an expert witness before the Appellate Tax Board

REAL ESTATE AND APPRAISAL EXPERIENCE

Laverty Associates, Cambridge: Appraiser, experience in the appraisal of residential, commercial and industrial real estate throughout Eastern Massachusetts.

R.E. Greeley Associates: Appraisals, residential, commercial and industrial real estate

Real Estate Databases, Arlington: Computer property data for all properties in MA, Rl, CT and NH

Homesteaders Real Estate Inc., Belmont: Sales and rentals of all types of Real Estate.

BUSINESS EXPERIENCE

Marketing Rep: Southwestern Publishing Co., Cincinnati, OH New England Regional Manager

Owner and Treasurer: The Flower Cart, Retail Florist Shop, Arlington

Financial Consultant: Business Telecommunications Inc., Stoneham

ACCOUNTING AND REAL ESTATE TEACHING EXPERIENCE

Instructor, full-time, Massachusetts Bay Community College, 1974-1977

Part-time, Massachusetts Bay Community College, 1978-1990

Quincy Junior College, 1980-1986

American Institute of Banking, 1982-1987

Polaroid Corporation, 1982-1987

COMMUNITY ACTIVITIES

Arlington Town Meeting, 1993-2011

Arlington Alcohol Education Committee, 1968

Capital Budgeting Committee

Arlington Touchdown Club

Arlington Irish American Club

Selectmen’s Advisory Committee for Arlington Cable Television

PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIPS

International Association of Assessing Officers

Massachusetts Assessor’s Association

Middlesex County Assessor's Association

Patrick J. Quinn

EXPERIENCE:

2001 to present: Quinn Group Insurance Agency, Arlington, president:
    Responsible for day-to-day operations, prepare financial and tax reports, coordinated employee benefits packages, assist clients with complex insurance issues, supervised staff of 15 employees, managed sales staff, grew agency 1,200 percent over 13-year period

1998-2000: Insurance Management Consultants, Cambridge: commercial insurance

    Personal, health and dental insurance
1991-1995: United States Marine Corps, honorably discharged

BOARDS & COMMITTEES:

Arlington Chamber of Commerce, Board of Directors

Winchester Chamber of Commerce, prior Board of Directors

Insurance Library of Boston, trustee

Commonwealth Automobile Reinsurers, MAIP Steering Committee

Griffin Photography Museum, board member

Massachusetts Association of Independent Insurance Agents, legislative committee

Member of the Rotary Club of Winchester

Board member, treasurer, NEMLEC (Northeast Law Enforcement Council)

EDUCATION: University of Massachusetts, criminal justice

Stephen P. Reynolds

MA Certified General R.E. Appraiser #3929

Reynolds Company of Quincy, real estate appraisers and consultants

CURRICULUM VITAE

Massachusetts-certified general real estate appraiser, license No. 3929

Member of the Appraisal Institute

Present Position: Reynolds Company, Quincy, Massachusetts

Real Estate Appraiser participating in all phases of fee appraisal work, including research, inspection, client liaison, report generation and review.

Academic Background:

Northeastern University School of Law - Boston, Massachusetts

Awarded Doctor of Law degree (current member of Massachusetts Bar)

Colgate University, Bachelor of Arts degree, concentration in philosophy

Thayer Academy, Braintree, graduated Cum Laude

Consulting and Valuation Assignments:

Hazardous Materials Contamination: Estimated effect on post remediation market value
(a k a stigma) resulting from spills of home heating oil, mold contamination, lead paint, etc.

Detrimental Conditions: Estimated effect on market value resulting from such issues as increased driveway slope, road proximity, and deed restrictions.

Historical Designation: Estimated effect on market value resulting from commercial property being designated a local historic landmark.

Mediation: Reviewed appraisals of a leased property, and mediated as third party between two differing appraisers in a divorce proceeding.

Tax Abatement: Consulted on all aspects of abatement work including analysis of
Assessor's methods and likelihood of success of abatement requests.

Easement Analysis: Gave advice to taking authorities concerning types of takings appropriate for various situations and impact therefrom.

Representative Assignments: Government/Private Partnership

Valuation of abandoned rail corridors and other linear parcels for conversion to alternate uses such as rail trials or transmission lines.

Appraised hundreds of takings for Bechtel Parsons Brinckerhoff in connection with Boston's "Big Dig" project, from such properties as World Trade Center, Federal Reserve Bank, Minot Station Steam Plant, plus many other buildings and parcels of vacant land.

Appraised parcels for Jay Cashman, Inc./Balfour Betty Construction, Inc. in connection with MBTA Greenbush line construction. Properties included residential, retail & industrial buildings, and vacant land.

Attorneys and Law Firms -

Appraisal of assorted buildings and vacant land throughout eastern Massachusetts. Analysis of breach of contract in regard to land value.

Valuation for tax purposes - federal (IRS standards) and local real estate taxes.

Litigation assignments related to hazardous materials contamination. Appraisal review.

Urban Redevelopment

Boston Redevelopment Authority - Takings for the Boston Convention Center Project. Properties included office buildings. Industrial space, vacant land, and parking lots.

Eminent domain

Massachusetts Attorney General's Office - Appraisals of various properties for eminent domain trials, including permanent and temporary easements, and issues of severance and consequential damages.

Conservation

Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources - Appraised farms throughout the state in connection with the Commonwealth's Agricultural Preservation Restriction program. Appraisals performed to rigorous federal "yellow book" standards.

Other Activities:

- Member of Arlington Land Trust and Friends of Spy Pond Park.

- Developed software application for residential sub-division analysis.

- Author of article on appraiser liability, published in The Appraiser's Edge.

- Town of Arlington Zoning Board of Appeals (Alternate Member 2000-2004).

- School Council Member - Hardy Elementary School - Arlington, MA.

- Mock Trial Judge at Tufts University Mock Trial Competition.

Professional Education selected listing:

Appraisal Institute -
USPAP Update (2006, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013)

Applications in Litigation Valuation (2013) IRS Valuation (2012)

Effects of Environmental Contamination (2011)

Massachusetts Board of Real Estate Appraisers

- GIS in Massachusetts (2013)
Appraisal Scope of Work (2006) USPAP Full Course (2003)

Lincoln Institute of Land Policy -
Theory & Practice of Land Valuation (2004)

Other seminars and classes, including

Federal Hwy, Admin. Appraisal Workshop (2014) Economic Outlook and Real Estate Trends (2014) Valuation of Conservation Easements (2013) Capital Markets and Econ. Insights (2013) Appraisal Best Practices (2013)

Michael W. Stern

EXPERIENCE:

Founder and CEO of Massinvestor, Inc. 1998 to Present

-- Created business publishing firm focused on venture capital and private equity, which is a core product for professional services firms, entrepreneurs and business schools across the U.S.

-- Hired and supervised freelance research editors, creative contributors and database architects.

-- Developed marketing materials for Web site, Email campaigns and trade advertising.

-- Developed partnerships with Venture Capital and Private Equity Forums across the country.

Technology Specialist, Fidelity Investments 1996-1998

-- Key member of Technology team for the FESCO division of Fidelity Investments.

-- Key application troubleshooter for FEN, Fidelity's internal employment network.

-- Assisted LAN/ Desktop support team in troubleshooting wide range of internal applications.

Financial Consultant, Merrill Lynch 1994-1996

-- Stockbroker for country's largest Private Wealth Asset Management Firm.

-- Holder of Series 7, 63 and 65 financial licenses.

-- Managed in aggregate seven figure financial accounts for businesses and individuals.

EDUCATION:

University of Texas, Austin, 1983-1987, BA in psychology


PROFESSIONAL ACCOMPLISHMENTS:

-- Member of the Advisory Committee of the 128 Innovation Capital Group

-- Creator of WhoOwnsFacebook.com, the definitive who's who guide to Facebook wealth. The site was featured in New York Magazine, BusinessWeek, NPR Radio, Boston Business Journal and a CBS local TV newscast.`


This story was published Sunday, June 22, 2014, and updated July 2.

orrection: YourArlington previously reported a total of seven candidates for the Board of Assessors. There were five.

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