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After Controversy, Council Officers Issues to be Examined

Boston.com reported the council's rules subcommittee will review proposed changes from Councilor Robert Penta.

The Medford City Council's rules subcommittee will review proposed changes to the stipends and terms of office for officers, according to a Boston.com report. The review comes after the council's controversial voting process for president and vice president at the first two meetings of 2013.

Councilor Robert Penta, who invoked a rule during the first meeting to end debate on voting for president and vice president when questions about conflicts of interest were raised, is proposing the new changes. Boston.com is reporting Penta would like to see council officers rotated and the additional stipends for those positions eliminated.

After Jan. 8's meeting ended when Penta invoked the rule, the council did re-elect Robert Maiocco as president and Fred Dello Russo as vice president at a special meeting Jan. 10.

Originally, Councilor Michael Marks questioned whether councilors running for those offices could vote for themselves based on state conflict of interest laws.

At the special meeting, the "rule of necessity" was invoked to allow a vote after four of the seven councilors were nominated for president and all four claimed a possible conflict of interest.

Joe Viglione January 18, 2013 at 02:22 PM
The damage is done if Maiocco and Dello Russo stay in as this is an election year. They will manipulate the length of speeches and the content of what the public wants to discuss. When Robert Maiocco tried to shut down Councilor Penta, an elected official, with Maiocco's nephew, Sheriff's office employee Paul A. Camuso constantly interrupting Mr. Penta, it was clear that the uncle and his nephew have a cozy way of engaging in censorship, to the detriment of this community. If Councilor Penta isn't allowed to speak, an official elected TO SPEAK on behalf of the citizens, what chance do you think you have with Mr. Maiocco's underhanded tactics and his nephew, Camuso's, sneaky ways of shutting people up.
Arthur DeLuca March 14, 2013 at 12:48 PM
Council Rules state the length of time each Councilor has to speak. It should be strictly adhered to every week, but unfortunately it is not. I remember when Breanna Lungo (I don't think she was married at that time) served as Council President one year she attempted to apply that rule equally but was basicly bullied down by Penta until she stopped enforcing it. I know some ex City Councilors who quit the Council (by not running again) because they couldn't stand being held a captive audience listening to Penta's B.S. (as they put it) every Tuesday night. He'd run on and on, causing most meeting to run past midnight. But the residents loved it. I have one neighbor who misses those days when Penta ran on much longer than he does now. This guy actually votes for Penta every election just because he likes to see the three Ring Circus the meetings sometimes degenerate into as they did first meeting this year. What a sad statement on politics and how people vote!

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