Assistant City Atorney Jim Bowers
Calls Patrick Blanchette Dangerous
Lawrence City Council President Patrick
Blanchette has been on a mission for the last few months.
His mission: create a firestorm around Budget and FinanceDirector John Griffin so that he
either quits or gets fired, create a firestorm around
Caroline Ganley (who has left) and Planning Director Mike
Sweeney, so that they will either quit or get fired. and
most recently create a firestorm around Assistant City
Attorney Jim Bowers until he either quits or gets fired.
In defending himself before the council last week, Bowers
called Blanchette dangerous! Blanchette has
also attacked John Griffin calling for him to be fired
for spending $10,000 on office renovations while the City
Council Offices were getting a $16,000 makeover.
Lawrence City Council President Patrick Blanchette
publicly called for the firing of Assistant City Attorney
Jim Bowers at a public meeting and also announced that he
would be reporting Bowers to the Board of Bar Overseers
so that Bowers would be disbarred. Blanchette called for
Bowers job because, he said, Bowers had
lied to the city attorney regarding his
involvement in negotiating a buyout deal for Finance
Director John Griffin (whom Blanchette also drove out of
Below is the word-for-word response Assistant Attorney
Bowers gave at the January 3rd meeting of the Lawrence
City Council, where Blanchette had placed the item on the
agenda to fire Bowers.
I would like to now make a personal response
to the allegations made against me, as the allegations
have been personal in nature, and are an attack on my
integrity, and question my ethics as an attorney.
Please do not mistake my outline as an effort on behalf
to save my job. I am a part-time employee for
the city. I am an attorney with a private practice in
Lawrence, having practiced in Lawrence for the last
fourteen (14) years. I have been an assistant city
attorney for just short of seven (7) years.
In the past, I have offered my resignation to the
city, due to the significant workload placed upon me as a
part-time attorney for the city. I was asked to stay on,
and, after the hiring of a full-time assistant city
attorney to assist with the city of Lawrence caseload,
agreed to do so. As I told Councilor Patrick Blanchette
in my phone conversation with him on December 19th,
fire me if you want to, but please make sure you
have your facts correct.
Apparently, Councilor Blanchette did not take me up on
that offer. Councilor Blanchette is apparently not one to
let the facts get in the way of an agenda he is pursuing.
My purpose for providing this information to you is to
correct the record, and at the same time, make an effort
at restoring my reputation, which has been tarnished by
Councilor Blanchette, as my reputation is far more
important than my position as an assistant city attorney
for the city of Lawrence.
For what is a game to Councilor Blanchette, is real life
for others. He has no sense of accountability. Councilor
Blanchettes comments have been broadcast on
television, and have been published by secondary media
outlets within the city.
As for City Attorney Charlie Boddy, I would like to give
him the benefit of the doubt in this matter, by stating
that, with the many things going on today in city
government that require the attention of the city
attorneys office, that he had an incorrect
recollection of the events from the week leading up to
December 19th, however difficult that may be to believe,
given the importance of the subject matter. However, I
cannot overlook the fact that, once the correct set of
facts was brought to his attention, he did nothing to
formally correct his earlier statement. In fact, it took
me four requests to even get a copy of his memorandum
As for City Council President Patrick Blanchette, he is a
dangerous individual. He is reckless, and states things
that are either in ignorance of facts, or in complete
disregard for the facts, regardless of whose reputation
he is damaging. His defamatory allegations, with full
knowledge of the falsity of the statements, or in
reckless disregard for their truthfulness, are far worse
than any allegations he has made against the mayor of the
One should be allowed to be a participant in government
without having to be the subject of personal attacks.
When one sets out to work in municipal government, he or
she does not sign on for the likes of Patrick Blanchette.
One should not have to work in fear that Patrick
Blanchette will use his microphone to launch a personal
attack upon an individual, regardless of worthiness of
such an attack, or the truthfulness of his comments.
I lament the fact that I had to spend time over the New
Years holiday, having to prepare a response to
Councilor Blanchettes reckless statements, taking
away time from my wife and two small children, in order
to defend myself.
I lament the fact that an individual such as Patrick
Blanchette serves as the president of the council. I
lament the fact that so much time has been taken to
address this issue, when there are far more important
matters that require the councils attention.
Councilor Blanchette drew me into this fray, despite
having documentation that the information supplied to him
by Attorney Charles Boddy, regarding my knowledge of a
signed contract, was factually inaccurate.
Councilor Blanchette decided to broadcast his falsehoods,
both verbally and in print, because it advanced his
agenda for that evening, which was an attack on the
Councilor Blanchette has no credibility with me. Whatever
impact his actions have on the remainder of this council,
and the citizenry of Lawrence, is not known. However, in
the least, I would hope that any words spoken by
Councilor Blanchette in the future be met with extreme
skepticism, given his actions in this manner, and the
depths into which he will dwell.
Until this moment, I had never gauged the actual levels
of Councilor Blanchettes recklessness, having only
viewed it from the sideline. I have now witnessed it
first-hand, and have been damaged by it.
In my close to seven years as a part-time assistant city
attorney, I have made an effort to stay out of the
political aspects of city government, as politics has no
place in the city attorneys office. Unfortunately,
I apparently was unable to remain dissociated with the
politics of the city completely.
I now speak openly regarding my impressions of this city
I am not a native to the city, but have worked in the
city for the last 17 years, a personal choice on my
behalf. I enjoy this city, and have been welcomed by the
people who live and work here.
I do know some members of this council, while some of the
members I do not. Let me state that, what plagues this
city is the destructive efforts of the few which impede
the progress advanced by the many. I hope that the
remaining council, in this New Year, can re-focus its
efforts, away from the destructive agenda of one, and
toward the constructive agenda of the many.
I will make available my comments and the documentation
provided to the city council this evening to anyone who
I am willing to answer any questions that the council has
on this matter.
*Send your questions comments to ValleyPatriot@aol.com
The January 2007 Edition
of the Valley Patriot
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