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Strong Language and Vicious Messages Surprise Board of Health Members

The Board of Health
The Board of Health

If members of the board of health seem pleased to get the issue of regulating raw milk done and over with, chances are it’s because of the response the board has receive from the proposed rules regulations for the sale and distribution of raw milk in Foxboro

While the raw milk regulations were voted down, board members were subjected a to heckling from some but not all supporters of raw milk during the public hearing that went over an hour at the Ahern Middle School Monday night,

“There are a lot of awful negative things that were said here. I believe we were referred to as Gestapo, stupid, just a lot of horrible things were said. Really just unnecessary and frankly I’m embarrassed for you because these are from your people,” chair Paul Steeves said.

The heated comments did not start that evening. According to Steeves, the board of health has been subjected to an increase of emails and voicemails featuring a variety of what he called nasty, negative, mean spirited, and horrible things to say.

“A lot of people dropped the F bomb in the voicemails, that’s really uncalled for and a really horrible way to conduct business. Frankly, I’m ashamed for whoever felt the need to call the board of health and use that language,” Steeves said.

Vice-chair Paul Mullins was also appalled by the actions of some of the raw milk supporters.

“I was surprised by some of the negativity towards the board and towards the people working for you that were trying our best to protect everybody. That being said, we’re here to do a job,” Mullins said.

Steeves was also critical of those who told him in the past few weeks that he did not care for Foxboro due to the public hearing and proposed regulations.

“A lot of people seem to hang their hat on how much you care about the town by how long you’ve lived here. I don’t find that to be accurate. I’ve lived here my whole life more or less. My father grew up in town and his mother and father grew up in town so I’ve been in Foxboro for a long time,” Steeves said. “So to say that I don’t care about the town is wrong.”

While board members will likely leave this issue alone for now, Mullins warned supporters that it could come up again.

“It (the vote) doesn’t mean in the future this won’t come up. It certainly could. It could be a different board, it could be a completely different set of set of circumstances, it could be a completely different set of rules that are more palatable,” Mullins said, before voting to reject the proposed rules and regulations for the sale and distribution of raw milk in Foxboro.

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