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Madawaska selectman resigns during meeting

MADAWASKA, Maine — The Madawaska Board of Selectmen might be down a member after Dan Daigle made a dramatic exit at Thursday’s board meeting after writing his resignation longhand and signing it on his way out the door.

 

The board tabled accepting the resignation in hopes to work something out with Daigle.

Near the end of the meeting when the board finished going over the agenda items, Chairman Doug Cyr brought up a document that outlined the code of ethics for the Madawaska town manager. In the document, Cyr called special attention to a section about how town managers should refrain from the political scene. 

After Cyr pointed out the rule, the board had a heated discussion over a Facebook post in which Selectman Dan Daigle allegedly replied to the post, ultimately with the comment “[Town Manager] Gary [Picard] needs to go,” according to Cyr.

St. John Valley Times/fiddleheadfocus.com was unable to locate the original Facebook post and it was not read out loud during the meeting.

Daigle said he was upset with Picard for not going to greet Sen. Susan Collins when she came to Madawaska prior to the election. While reading the code of ethics passage, Cyr said that Picard was acting within the code of ethics by not engaging during political races. 

Daigle defended his comments on Facebook and ended up resigning on the spot. 

“The intent was only to make him aware of the damage he could do,” Cyr said after Daigle walked out of the meeting.

Picard said he and some board members have endured “two and a half years of coordinated harassment,” alluding to what was previously referred to by the board as a Facebook smear campaign targeted toward the town manager, finance director and eventually economic development director. 

“Every time someone tries to do something good, someone starts a fire,” Picard said. 

At the end of the meeting, Ross Dubois of the Madawaska Police Department, Eric Cyr of Madawaska Ambulance Service and Jim Soucy of the Madawaska Fire Department, stood and declared support for the remaining four members. 

 The board then decided to table accepting the resignation letter.

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