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August 21, 2013

Selectmen to vote on removing official next week

Show of support Medeiros seen at hearing

SALISBURY — After impassioned pleas last night of behalf of embattled Liquor Licensing Commissioner Gilbert Medeiros, selectmen have seven days to decide if they will remove him from office for what some consider poor conduct at a July selectmen’s meeting.

Last night’s public hearing was requested by Medeiros, in accordance with Salisbury’s Home Rule Charter. It came after the Board of Selectmen met on July 22 and voted 3 to 2 of their intent to remove him from the commission, citing his behavior at their their July 1 meeting as “conduct unbecoming his office.” At that session, Medeiros stood and vigorously berated Selectmen Donald Beaulieu, Freeman Condon and Henry Richenburg for their votes against a slot casino, which killed the venture in town.

Richenburg told the roughly 30 people in attendance last night that they had the right to speak their opinion for or against Medeiros’ removal. But, Richenburg warned, he wouldn’t tolerate slanderous comments against the board or others at the meeting. Police Chief Tom Fowler was also present at the hearing, in case he was needed to intervene.

During his introduction, Richenburg played a video from the July meeting, which showed selectmen casting their votes against the casino. Immediately following, Medeiros could be heard repeatedly calling the selectmen’s decision “disgusting,” then adding “you’re disgusting.” He rose, walked toward selectmen and in a three minute rant aimed at Beaulieu, Condon and Richenburg, pointed his finger aggressively at them while he spoke.

“We should somehow get together and get you guys out of here,” he told the three selectmen, ending with, “I’m going to put a petition to recall you guys.”

He was joined in criticizing the members by Haverhill resident Bruce Arakelian, who owned the land upon which the casino would have been built. Arakelian verbally challenged Beaulieu for smiling, telling the three selectmen who voted against the casino to “get the hell out” of town.

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