A former town employee is alleging that the Milton Selectboard has violated Vermont’s Open Meeting Law regarding government transparency. According to Selectboard Chair Darren Adams, the ex-employee has made the allegation to a pair of high-ranking state officials.
The Open Meeting Law allegation apparently originated from a personnel dispute. Adams said that on September 15, 2021, the former town employee filed a written complaint with the Selectboard against another town employee.
“The Selectboard consulted with its attorneys (regarding the September 15 complaint),” Adams said. “The attorneys retained an independent investigator to look into the allegations. The town’s attorneys provided the board with legal advice in executive session.”
Adams said he personally told the ex-employee that the board determined no violations of state law or town policy took place in that executive session. The former employee believed otherwise.
“She subsequently filed a complaint with the (Vermont) Secretary of State’s office on December 29, 2021 and the Attorney General’s office on January 4, 2022 alleging that the board had violated the Open Meeting Law by improperly taking action in executive session,” Adams added.
Adams acknowledged he may have created a mistaken impression. However, he said he still doesn’t believe there were any Open Meeting Law violations, adding that he responded to the ex-employee directly as a courtesy.
“The board took no formal or binding action in executive session,” Adams said. “The board had no obligation to respond formally to the complaint. This was not a quasi-judicial matter requiring a decision.”
When asked Thursday night, Milton Town Manager Don Turner, Jr. said he couldn’t comment on the complaint — or on which position the former employee held — unless a Freedom of Information Act public records request were filed. It was not possible to do so prior to the deadline for this story.
Local 22 & Local 44 News reached out numerous times to the former Milton town employee, but received no response.