Town Moderator: 'New Voices' Were Reason Behind Finance Committee Appointments
When asked about the controversy surrounding the Finance Committee, Town Manager Myron Fox said that his decisions are legally allowed by town bylaws.
Fox, who announced recently that he is stepping down as Town Moderator, said that when he relieved Robert Stein and Tammie Dufault of their Finance Committee duties, he was doing so to get a new perspective on the board.
"New voices for the Finance Committee," were the reason for the new appointments, Fox told Patch. "All were well qualified (with) masters degrees and finance or budget experience."
The Town Moderator said that four people applied for Finance Committee positions, and those four residents were interviewed. He said they were officially appointed on May 7.
However, the decision has brought controversy in recent weeks. Stein spoke to the Board of Selectmen on Tuesday, and said that he and other residents believe he and Dufault were essentially fired from their positions because of the stances they took on budget issues.
The Board of Selectmen will discuss the Finance Committee appointments at their next meeting. Newly selected chairman Chuck Woodard said at last week's session that selectmen have no control over the Finance Committee as the bylaw is written in an effort to keep politics out of the Finance Committee's decisions.
When asked what his response is to residents who have questioned the Finance Committee appointments he simply said his decisions were legally allowed.
"Each of the methods described above (the application and interview process) is permitted by the town bylaws," said Fox.