February 16, 2023
We vehemently disagree with the leaked opinion from the Board of Ethics, as a proper and thorough investigation into the events leading up to the special city council meeting of February 6th was not conducted.
By not contacting the Mayor or the council members who called for the meeting, the Board of Ethics could only arrive at a biased conclusion.
While the term “appearance of impropriety” does not constitute a violation of any kind, it stains the work we’re trying to move forward.
Josh Nathan, Bill Henderson and Lori Fontanes requested advice from the Board of Ethics on the matter, something they are entirely entitled to do, however the opinion was rendered in confidential form to them only. Somehow that document made its way to the press. Their intentions are apparent. Councilmembers Henderson, Nathan and Fontanes are not interested in transparency. They want to engage in dirty politics—putting politics above the needs and demands of our community.
The only action taken at the special meeting was to set a public hearing on a proposed moratorium on tree removals for the following meeting. No laws were changed. A public hearing was simply set.
We have demonstrated by passing several amendments to the code that we are committed to achieving responsible development in Rye. Unfortunately, this latest politically motivated move by our colleagues has set us back.
-Councilwoman Carolina Johnson, Councilwoman Julie Souza and Councilman Ben Stacks