Kittery Council Member Who Quit: I Did Nothing Wrong
One of the two members of the Kittery town council who resigned over allegations they improperly investigated the actions of municipal workers said he did nothing wrong.
Charles Denault Jr. and Kenneth Lemont were unanimously asked to step down on Tuesday "because both councilors violated the town charter by improperly interfering with the administration of town personnel matters," according to a statement from the council.
Their proper course of action should have been to bring their concerns to the Town Manager, according to the letter. Instead Denault and Lemont performed their own investigation of what they considered to be a problem and met with employees, followed female employees on their lunch hour and brought their findings to Town Manager Kendra Amaral in the expectation she would take action, the council said in their letter.
"The Town Manager and an independent investigator investigated the claims and found that no Town policies or procedures had been violated," according to the council's statement.
In a statement to OurKittery.com Denault blamed a "smear campaign" for his exit from the council and took issue with the statement noting he was “surveilling females”.
"Whether those employees happen to be male or female was of no moment; I felt- and feel- obligated to either document such abuse or to confirm that it was unfounded, and that is exactly what I did. Moreover, I promptly advised the Town Manager of both what I had done and what I had learned," Denault wrote.
He wrote that he was "following-up on reports of town employees running personal errands while being paid by Kittery taxpayers" and called it a "classic example of shooting the messenger."
Lemont told OurKittery.com that he stepped down because of "health related concerns." He had been elected to a third term in November.
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