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Home Page Letter of Complaint
Subject: Town Manager - Excess of Authority
To: Board of Selectmen
From: David Delorey
Date: January 31, 1998
Location: Town of Billerica, Massachusetts

                                             One Edgar Road
                                             Billerica, Massachusetts 01821
                                             January 31, 1998
Board of Selectmen
Town of Billerica
365 Boston Road
Billerica Massachusetts

Dear Board Members:

I wrote to the board on January 7, 1998 about the town managerís 
reorganization of a town agency without authorization.  The board 
discussed this issue on January 26, 1998, but took no votes.  The town 
manager has denied any wrongdoing, but the questions in my January 7th 
letter have been unanswered.  

The scope of this letter is confined to the town manager acting in excess 
of authority, not the wisdom of any decision or water billing issues. I am 
writing again to re-focus on the requirements of the law and ethics.  
Apparently, the town manager has:
 1) failed to hold public hearings for the water billing reorganization.
 2) permanently reorganized the water billing department without 
 3) increased the salary of the treasurer $7,200 without appropriation.
 4) pre-paid the salary before receiving the services.
 5) submitted a $7,200 payment warrant for the selectmenís authorization.
 6) obtained approval of the payment warrant from the board of selectmen.
 7) paid the $7,200 salary increase from a contract services account.
 8) bypassed the spirit of the public bid law for a new contracted service. 
 9) took no offsetting decrease in other salaries (paying twice?). 

After viewing the January 26th meeting on BATV, the matters of conflicting 
ethics and the lack of adherence to the law are compelling, and recent 
anecdotal evidence of the town managerís paradoxical behavior is obvious.  
In the Joseph Dougherty v. Board of Appeals case, the town meeting 
appropriated funds to reimburse the plaintiffs for the damage done by the 
board of appeal, consistent with a 1996 court ruling, that the board of 
appeal acting in excess of their legal authority.  Then, it was the town 
manager that prevented this legally voted payment because he found that 
the payment was allegedly illegal - consideration of morally correctness, 
ethically soundness or deservedness was absent.  The board of selectmen 
sided with the town manager - the alleged illegal payment was denied.  
Again, the wisdom of this payment was not a factor. 

Now we come to the question of the town manager doing an illegal deed.  If 
this is true, then the $7,200 salary payment should be reclaimed forthwith 
and the water billing reorganization should be rescinded immediately.  
After viewing the January 26th board meeting, I raise the following 
additional questions:  
 1) will the board of selectmen be consistent in remedy with the Dougherty
 2) will the same town manager, that considers illegal payments so important,
    be permitted to do what was denied to others?   
 3) And most importantly, will our elected board of selectmen actually 
    approve, actively or tacitly, any unlawful act or support ethical/moral 
Please contact me at the above address or at with your 
decision.  Thank you

                                          David Delorey
                                          Town Meeting Representative
                                          Precinct Seven
cc: Finance Committee

Home Page Response to Letter of Complaint
Subject: Town Manager - Excess of Authority
To: David Delorey
From: Board of Selectmen
Date: No Response Provided
Location: Town of Billerica, Massachusetts


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