The town of Harvard Finance Committee wishes to thank our colleague, George McKenna, for his more than 15 years of service on our committee.
George was a highly respected member, vice chairman and chairman for multiple years. Additionally, he served on the Finance Committee Selection Study Committee, the Capital Committee and its successor, the Capital Planning and Investment Committee (CPIC), of which he was the recent chairman.
Being the former town auditor, George brought a unique perspective to the Finance Committee. He knew how Massachusetts town finances operated and how towns should be managed. He was always able to answer the question, "How do they deal with this issue in other towns?"
As a steward of the townspeople, George was never afraid to question the benefit of proposed spending until he was satisfied it was worthwhile. But he was also the first to speak up in supporting additional budget dollars for well-designed initiatives that would benefit a majority of people in the town. He also spearheaded our push for stronger maintenance plans across all town budgets to help reduce sporadic capital spending in favor of less costly ongoing repairs.
In addition to his valuable contributions to the Finance Committee, George was instrumental in pushing for the creation of the CPIC we have today and in leading the town as a whole to think about long-term capital planning within the budget. He also initiated the effort to make projected capital spending visible to every voter by including five-year projections of the impact of capital projects and debt on residential property tax bills in "The Book" for annual Town Meeting.
For his many years of service on capital committees, the members of the CPIC also extend their heartfelt thanks.
We wish George the best and trust he will enjoy all those free Wednesday nights and Saturday mornings in the winter and early spring. He will be missed.
ALICE VON LOESECKE
Chair Harvard Finance Committee