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In Your Own Words: City Council Did Treat Municipal Clerk Fairly

17248 I just watched Channel 19 coverage of the last Gloucester City Council meeting and am appalled that City Clerk Paul Kain insisted on airing his dirty laundry on television and on the front page of the Gloucester City News.

What was he thinking? He subjected himself and his family – including his wife’s candidacy for public office – to public humiliation because of, in my opinion, his failure to perform official duties.

City Council members found unanimously that he failed to provide public information under provisions of the state’s Open Records Act (OPRA). This is serious business, because access to government documents is an essential part of our democracy.

I thought City Council treated Mr. Kain not only fairly, but gently, by issuing a written reprimand for what I consider a major infraction because of the disregard for the fundamental rights of all citizens of this community.

But, in my opinion, the worse punishment was inflicted on his own reputation, reflected on the reputation of his family. Mr. Kain deserved it for insisting on staging a public spectacle to bring attention to the fact that he failed to perform his official duties.

What could he have been thinking?

Jim Kelly, Gloucester City

First published in the Gloucester City News

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