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Phone bill lands Alpha mayor in hot water

By Nikita Biryukov, December 12 2018 11:13 am

A $1,200 phone bill wracked up by Alpha Borough Mayor Craig Dunwell has the executive in how water, and residents are the ones footing the bill.

The mayor’s taxpayer-funded phone bill includes $1,275 in international data charges that he said he accrued in Ukraine, where the Dunwell said he used an international data plan that priced 100 MB at $25.

The mayor claimed most of the charges came from application updates and said he had to use data to access emails, texts and the internet through mobile data.

The charges have some of the borough’s roughly 2,400 residents calling for the mayor’s phone to be taken away.

“I think I’ve saved the borough a lot more money than $1,200 in the two and a half, almost three, years I’ve been here,” Dunwell said at a council meeting Tuesday. “If the governing body, which approved the bill, if they have an issue with it, if they want to take away my cellphone, that’s their decision. I’m against it based on productivity, but that’s their decision.”

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5 thoughts on “Phone bill lands Alpha mayor in hot water

  1. He did this last year too, supposedly last years bill was around $400. I am requesting both bills. I was at the meeting and this is totally not justified. When the mayor is away, the president of council is suppose to handle the issues. In a small town like Alpha, what can be so important. Not only that, he called the towns lawyer and total amount of time on phone with him was 92 mins, that I can see anyway. So now we are double charged, because the lawyer bills by the minutes or hours.

  2. Are people aware that Mayor Dunwell utilized the clerk’s office as a babysitting facility for his son? He had the clerk watch him when he was out of the Municipal building. She watched him while performing her confidential clerk duties. Maybe that explains why she needs two additional helpers and the OT to get work done. Why is the clerk’s office closed to the public on Wednesdays if Alpha has a deputy clerk? Dunwell says he’s saved us money. How is that possible?
    In regards to the phone bill, why did Dunwell call the Acting Municipal Clerk on her PERSONAL cell phone rather than her office phone? It appears they spoke for 48 minutes. Why did he call his buddy Savary on the town issued phone and talk for 23?

  3. Are people aware that Mayor Dunwell utilized the clerk’s office as a babysitting facility for his son? He had the clerk watch him when he was out of the Municipal building. She watched him while performing her confidential clerk duties. Maybe that explains why she needs two additional helpers and the OT to get work done. Why is the clerk’s office closed to the public on Wednesdays if Alpha has a deputy clerk? Dunwell says he’s saved us money. How is that possible?
    In regards to the phone bill, why did Dunwell call the Acting Municipal Clerk on her PERSONAL cell phone rather than her office phone? It appears they spoke for 48 minutes. Why did he call his buddy Savary on the town issued phone and talk for 23?
    According to his response: I saved the Borough X amount of money so the phone bill shouldn’t be a problem? Who says that?

  4. I find this all very hypocritical of Mayor Dunwell. I remember when past Mayor Hanics was issued a town phone Dunwell and other members criticized Hanics for using taxpayers money for a phone. Hanics then switch the phone over to his personal account so the taxpayers were not paying for his phone. Second whenever Hanics was away on vacation or out of town for work he left the council president know because the President was the one that was in charge. You leave the country you leave the president of council in charge you don’t make the taxpayers pay towards your vacation. But then maybe it’s a control issue or does he think the town can’t survive without him.

  5. So, just because Dunwell didn’t want a phone and a resident suggests he get one doesn’t mean Dunwell gets to abuse the power of having one. Shame on Alpha council members for voting to pay this outlandish bill. Alpha taxpayers are getting abused over and over from this governing body.
    Enough is enough! If members of council are afraid to stand up to their mayor, it’s time to go!!

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