LtE: Town Meeting

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“I might actually make it on to Town Meeting now, with these vacancies in precincts 5 and 7,” stated Select Board member Chris Haley, gleefully and loudly enough for me to overhear him, as he spoke to someone on the stage, before the start of Town Meeting on Thursday evening, April 25. Mr. Haley is a resident of precinct 7, and after 4 attempts, has not been elected to Town Meeting. I represent precinct 5. I’ve since learned that Mr. Haley made similar brags to other people that evening. There currently are no vacancies in precincts 5 and 7.

After Town Meeting adjourned, Mr. Haley approached me, “I wasn’t referring to you,” he said. Mr. Haley had realized that I had overheard his earlier remark, and wanted to reassure me that I would not be one of the Town Meeting members he anticipated being forced to resign, opening up a seat for him. “Whoever said that about you, [a reference to my comments that I had been falsely and publicly accused of alleged wrongdoing related to former Select Board member Jackie McCarthy’s resignation], if they had just come to me first, I could have told them you were not involved. They should have just talked to me first.” It appears Mr. Haley believes he has found a way to exploit and benefit from the circumstances regarding Ms. McCarthy’s resignation.  

At the Select Board meetings following Ms. McCarthy’s resignation, Mr. Haley hurled vile and false accusations at fellow Select Board member Mark Dockser, violating the Select Board Code of Conduct, and shocking residents who have known Mr. Dockser to be an ethical, honest, and generous long-time neighbor, volunteer, and friend. Mr. Dockser no longer appears to be in Mr. Haley’s cross-hairs; Mr. Haley’s scope is now trained on Town Meeting members whom he thinks may provide him with a better opportunity.

On April 4, I had a lengthy conversation with Ms. McCarthy regarding her reasons for resigning. During our conversation, Ms. McCarthy called Mr. Haley “imprecise,” and when I asked her about specific comments Mr. Haley had made regarding Mr. Dockser, Ms. McCarthy stated, “No, I never told him that.”

Ms. McCarthy had the opportunity to participate in a neutral third-party investigation, paid for by the Town, and she declined. She still has the opportunity to report any alleged wrong doing to the proper authorities at any time. It is time for Mr. Haley and the Select Board to move on and get back to the important business of the Town. I make a clarion call to Mr. Haley to have the moral courage to issue a swift, contrite, and public apology to Mr. Dockser and his family, for the harm and pain that his words and actions have inflicted upon them.


Angela Binda
Orchard Park Drive

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