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Meet the new warden: Lynch, council in the dark

January 28. 2012 3:26PM

We wish Berlin state prison warden Edward Reilly well in his new job at the new facility. We also wish Gov. John Lynch and the Executive Council would be a little more probing the next time they make a major appointment.

Corrections Commissioner William Wrenn said it was his decision to recommend Reilly for the job and, yes, Wrenn says he knew all about a 2004 Long Island audit that was highly critical of costs at the Nassau County facility Reilly was running.

Wrenn said he knew about the audit and discussed it thoroughly with Reilly, but he did not mention it to Lynch and the councilors because, he said, it wasn't an issue with him. Come again?

The audit cited 'an overall failure to supervise personnel time and leave.' It was enough of an issue for Wrenn to discuss it thoroughly with his nominee but not enough to share with the people ultimately making the hiring decision? Wow. The governor and councilors ought to be feeling a bit red-faced over that.

With New Hampshire facing its own tight budgets, thanks in large measure to overspending in previous Lynch budgets, we hope that someone - the Legislature, perhaps? - will be keeping an eye on how the new warden does with managing the Berlin prison budget. And let's hope it is not by releasing the bad guys prematurely, which is what Wrenn, Lynch and company have attempted to do in the past.

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