RTM ethics complaint sees no further action
An ethics complaint that was lodged in October against members of the RTM Education Committee has been closed with no action taken, the Darien Times has learned. The committee held a meeting in late September that featured personal attacks on the school superintendent, Dr. Dan Brenner, and members of the Board of Education. The meeting was broadcasted live, and the audio of the meeting is still available to be heard, and the complaint was lodged by a person who had heard the audio.
Former Committee Chairman Dennis Maroney, who now is on the Board of Education, mistakenly revealed the name of the person who made the complaint to the committee at a later meeting. The name of any person who makes a complaint is supposed to remain confidential throughout the process of addressing the complaint. The names of the committee members that the complaint was lodged against will remained, ironically, sealed and private.
In a letter to the complainant, Tom Moore, the Chairman of the Board of Ethics, wrote, “On November 30th, the board met again and reviewed your complaints with town counsel. After giving each of your complaints due consideration, the board determined that there is no probable cause to pursue any alleged violation of the Town Code of Ethics and dismissed the complaints.”
Darien First Selectman Jayme Stevenson received the letter as well. Stevenson told the Darien Times, “My only comment about the complaint is that it seems to have been predicated more from frustration about less than desirable communication and behavior by some public officials rather than a true ethics violation. It is certainly a reminder that we, as public servants, need to take personal responsibility for our words and actions and remember that we represent the public and they have a right to expect respectful, civil discourse.”
There is no further appeal process for an ethics complaint and the matter is now considered closed. Many members of the Education Committee that were present at the meeting that drew the complaint and took part in the questionable conduct are still on the Education Committee, despite the words of an outspoken few at the Rules Committee meeting that assigns RTM members to committees.