To the editor: 

At the selectmen’s meeting of July 22, information was made public that Selectman Glenn Kemper had been in debt to the town for a large sum of money.

The debt had been accumulating, out of sight, beginning in early 2013. During the same time span, we were ask to re-elect him, in 2015 and 2018. The bill was paid in 2019. The circumstances under which the debt occurred are under active investigation.

In talking to fellow residents, I hear words of support for him such as, “Look at what he has done for the town” or “He does not get paid for being selectman.” Yes, both statements are true.

However, many people volunteer in West Newbury, some of them bringing advanced professional and personal skills to bear. There are many selfless citizens giving countless hours of their time day in and day out.

If the giving of goods or services are in fact giving or donating, then there is no compensation, or favor, or special treatment in return. There is no redeemable coupon issued.

Please my fellow residents, look closely at what has happened, at what is in play here. Has the moral authority of the office of one selectman been damaged? This is a time of test for us all, just what level of misbehavior are we willing to accept or to look away from.

I have, among a few others, asked both publicly and privately for Kemper’s resignation. Will you?

John McGrath

West Newbury