Kittery councilors at odds over ethics documents

By Hadley Barndollar

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KITTERY, Maine — The Town Council on Monday shelved a proposed ethics ordinance following the concern of one councilor over an accompanying appendix that presented “a potential First Amendment problem.” The proposal, he claimed, may be a reaction to a lawsuit that cost the town thousands of dollars.

The council previously identified adoption of procedures and a code of ethics as a priority in its annual goals for the 2016-2017 year. The intent was to establish a standard of expectations and requirements for ethical behavior for all municipal officials, including Town Council, board members and employees. The item on Monday’s agenda called for ordainment of Title 15 – Code of Ethics, but after confusion among councilors regarding an accompanying document, a consensus was reached to postpone any decisions until the second meeting in November; after the new Town Council is elected.

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