Rockport select board hears investigator's report

Additional meeting expected before decision
By Stephanie Grinnell | Jan 23, 2013

Rockport — Rockport Select Board members met Jan. 22 in executive session to receive a verbal report from the investigator tasked with investigating a complaint against a town employee, said Chairman William Chapman.

“No, I do not [expect a vote to take place following the executive session],” he said prior to the meeting. “We will hear an verbal report, an oral report, from the investigator then we'll decide we don't want to decide.”

Wednesday morning, Chapman said the board needs time to digest information presented by the investigator —Drummond Woodsum attorney Melissa Hewey — and said a written report will be submitted by Hewey no later than Friday, Jan. 25. He said the written report will be confidential. Chapman said select board members plan to meet with town attorney William Plouffe on Monday, Jan. 28, to "discuss what we can and cannot do."

"We don't want to go in the wrong direction," he said.

Select board members met with an attorney during the first part of Tuesday's meeting. Following a short break, a second executive session began, during which Hewey made her report.

Both the person the complaint was filed against and the person making the complaint were invited to attend the executive session, Chapman said prior to the meeting, adding, “I don't know if the people who filed will be there.” He confirmed Wednesday morning the presence of Town Manager Robert Peabody at the second executive session.

Select board member Geoffrey Parker did not attend the meeting in person, according to Chapman.

This week's meeting was a continuation of executive sessions that began on Dec. 31, 2012, after Chapman received a written complaint against a town employee. Chapman said he personally received the complaint in writing Dec. 28. He said "the nature of the complaint" led it to be submitted to him rather than any other member of town staff. An executive session Jan. 2 resulted in a select board vote to hire an investigator. Since then, select board members also met in executive session Jan. 15.

Chapman said he does not have an estimate of the costs of the investigation.

Associate Editor Stephanie Grinnell can be reached at 236-8511 or sgrinnell@courierpublicationsllc.com.

Comments (1)
Posted by: WAYNE BROWN | Jan 24, 2013 08:23

South Thomaston Selectmen, an one in paticular, should take lessons from the Rockport Selectman on how to conduct a proper investigation of a Town Offical or employee.

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