.

UPDATE: McNally Firing Questioned

Plenty Of Allegations Swirl Around Controversial Ousting

Ousted

And Wilson was not alone in his sentiments.   

“They considered him a danger because he knows what’s really going on,” said Montville Republican Town Councilor Dana McFee. “They fired him, he’s going to sue and he’s got a case and he’s going to win it.” 

Mayor Ronald K. McDaniel Jr. confirmed McNally, who has been on paid administrative leave since December, was sent a termination letter. But McDaniel declined to comment citing pending litigation which he said bars him from discussing the matter. 

“This is very distressing news,” said unaffiliated Town Councilor Rosetta Jones.

Lawsuit? 

According to statement issued by McNally attorney Jacques Parenteau, his client “intends to vindicate his rights and the harm caused to his reputation by filing actions in state and federal forums …” 

Parenteau alleges that McDaniel used “the cover of a politically motivated, biased investigation” as the basis for the firing. The investigation has not been made public. McNally was placed on paid leave following two WPCA worker accidents. 

But Patch has obtained documents that show the town was investigating McNally much earlier, beginning in 2010 and paid firm more than $4,000 to conduct that early investigation. 

Both Wilson and McFee allege that WPCA administrators were “out to get him then.”   

Why? 

“Back in 2010, at a football game, Tim May (WPCA board chair) told me he’d get rid of Tom,” McFee said.  “This is a disgrace, a total embarrassment. The mayor, the chairman (Town Council Chairperson Candy Buebendorf) should all be ashamed.”

Buebendorf sent an email this morning saying she "did not wish to comment on the McNally issue at all."

 And McFee pointed out that McNally was paid for the past six months while “they were figuring out how to get rid of him.” 

Wilson said there’s more to it. 

“Politics, yes, but there’s more to it. He wanted to see the anaerobic digester put on town property and let the town process (Rand Whitney Containerboard waste water) so we wouldn’t lose that money,” Wilson alleged. “They wanted it at Rand Whitney. And that’s what they got and now, Tom goes.” 

Last week, after a 2-hour closed door session, the town council voted unanimously, including McFee, to “endorse the submission of a waste water improvement plan to the bond commission to receive grant funding.” 

After the vote, WPCA administrator Brian Lynch said it was a “new beginning with the WPCA and Rand Whitney.” 

Patch received a copy of the consulting engineer’s report detailing the plan to pre-treat waste water using an anaerobic digestion treatment process. Rand Whitney would operate the system at their site for a cost of $362,000 annually and the town would see a significant reduction in the user fees the company pays to the town, to the tune of around $1.19 million.

The report states that based on cost analysis the project “may” disproportionately benefit Rand Whitney over the town. 

 

Politics at play? 

McNally’s attorney is charging that the firing was politically motivated.   

His statement read, in part, that beginning with McNally being placed on leave “in close proximity to the change in political control following the November 2011 election, it is clear from the totality of the circumstances, based on interview with witnesses with actual knowledge, that the purpose of the Mayor’s investigation was to create cause to remove Mr. McNally because of his affiliation with the Republican party as the Chair of the Town Committee." 

McNally has filed two Freedom of Information Act requests with the town of Montville. McNally "intends to vindicate his rights and the harm caused to his reputation by filing actions in state and federal forums to address the violation of his First Amendment right to be free of retaliation for engaging in political activity," Parenteau stated.

Despite the firing, McNally said, through his attorney (he did not return a call for comment) that he will not step down from his positions as Chairman of the Republican Town Committee, Vice-Chairman of the Public Safety Commission, Secretary of the Board of Education, member of the Zoning Board of Appeals, a member of the Conservation Commission, and a member of the Historical Steering Committee. 

Liz June 07, 2012 at 11:27 AM
There is more to the story, in a dirty little town-with dirty little secrets-where public officials scurry like rats to find the darkness-and for all of the public officials who misappropriate funds and play power and ego games with their office under the cloak of the "Town's" legal protection-shame on you for driving your personal agendas at the expense of the taxpayers.
Terry Loftis June 07, 2012 at 11:41 AM
I have known Tom McNally for several years and know him to be honorable and true to his word. This action taken by the WPCA and the Mayor goes against everything Tom believes. His work as a volunteer fireman, political leader, the number of boards and commissions speaks of nothing but high praise. His example should be an inspiration to all. Although admirable, the things I mention are not the major reason that I respect Tom. He has given up a lot to stay at home with a sick parent and see to her care. This takes sacrifice that he accepts willingly and gratefully. Tom, we have been political adversaries over the years and have always respected you and the positions you take. I am grateful to know you and be able to call you friend. I wish you well and hope for nothing but good things to come out of this travesty.
Ellen Hillman June 07, 2012 at 11:51 AM
I sat on the WPCA for 2 years (2009 to 2011) and have heard over and over by Mr. May that Mr. McNally needs to go. Careful Mr. Didato he also mentioned your name too. I told everyone on the council that the Rand Whitney deal was no deal. I have told the members of the WPCA what I suspected about the corruption there and the FOI I requested. No one wanted to look see it or do anything about it. Montville you voted in these idiots now your tax bill will pay the price. Someone has to be able to read on the town council or the WPCA???????
Walt June 07, 2012 at 01:29 PM
Another law suit for Montville that we the taxpayers have to pay for. Is there anyone out there that can run for office and not cost us more money?
Debbie June 07, 2012 at 02:17 PM
As Toms sister I know how dedicated he is to the town, his 3 nephews and our very sick mother. He is there everytime I need him to pick up my kids,have a burst pipe or anything else i need no matter what time of day, he rearranges his schedule and he is there never expecting anything in return. He has lived in Montville his whole life and his room is filled with accomadations from town officials for all kinds of good things he has done. He volunteers his time on numerous committees for the town. He has worked ar WPCA for so many years with lots of praise. Keith Truex's earlier comment was a joke he was so unpopular the only way he could get voted in to an officer position at Chesterfield was eliminate the competition and have most members leave the dept. i hope justice gets served in this case.
Dave Bottigliere June 07, 2012 at 05:18 PM
This appears to be another example of politics at work..For some reason the voters forget this stuff when the election comes around. The majority of the voters signed up for this leadership so it is silly to complain at this point. Is this really the leadership you think works best for Montville? We really can't afford to many more costly errors or "deals". Remember, it is very easy to spend someone else's money. Before you cast your next vote be sure it will go to support what you as the voter think is best for Montville. It is about time that the politicians prove their worth for the good of the town or be voted out. Voting your conscience not party affiliation, past friendships, etc. will go all long way to sending a message as to how the residents want THEIR town to be run.
renee james June 07, 2012 at 07:23 PM
Tom is a great guy!!! Letting him go is the worse mistake ever. The mayor needs to grow some and think and learn for himself.
J. Lincoln June 07, 2012 at 08:24 PM
ms jones if this is so distressing why haven't you spoken up? You have been involved with the closed door discussions and should be well aware that the charges against are without foundation. He, Mc Nally was apposed to the RW proposal and the financial concessions they receive. Who has the best interest of our town at heart?
Liz June 08, 2012 at 01:20 AM
J. Lincoln, Ms Jones is distressed because the Mayor, Town Attorney, Lynch and May didn't go back to the Town Council to make them the scapegoat for wrongful termination, therefore she was not consulted again. Secondly, she could now realize that "the long list of defendants" in an imminent lawsuit could include her.
J. Lincoln June 08, 2012 at 01:57 PM
Liz, think about the councilors meeting with the Mayor secretly regarding this matter. The Town Council does note have any authority to fire an employee. The Mayor does and it is obvious by these secret meetings the Council will have culpability. It is also obvious that they have discussed this in executive session. The law suit being filed is going to make a great story. In all likelihood reveal some very disturbing details about our local government.
J. Lincoln June 08, 2012 at 02:05 PM
Another thought, although the last Mayor and Council had differences they were able govern and work out differences. The current Council are d Democratic majority, The Mayor is a Democrat. The combination of the two make our highest elected officials quite powerful. Remember the saying "power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely." Are we there?
Miguel June 14, 2012 at 12:48 AM
as a hard core conservative I find it comical and rather embarrassing that you republicans are in a tizzy over this drama. kick back and enjoy the show. the democrats just might surprise you and turn this small town around or maybe they won't. as for mcnally's termination, I'm confident it was well deserved. in the meantime be patient, you'll have your opportunity for absolute power. question is, will you know what to do with it.
Ellen Hillman June 14, 2012 at 09:20 PM
If the democrats could turn this town around I would have to wonder how many years they would need to do it? after all they have been in control for many many years. If you are so confident it was well deserved then please do not hide behind a made up name you are right to be patient the answer to all questions will come out over time
Miguel June 14, 2012 at 10:08 PM
Ellen Your so typical and predictable , you assume this is not my real name. Just like you assume mcnally is innocent. No wonder this town is in trouble. Good ridden

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