It has been almost one week since I learned from Fox 25 news that there was wrongdoing by members of the Medford Police Department.
Many residents have been asking me what is going on and I wanted to let the public know that details have still not been disclosed and I still have more questions than answers. How were these violations discovered? What management controls are in place to confirm hours worked? What has the department learned and changed as a result? Why wasn’t the public told after the Mayor knew for months?
Here is what we know. Being a member of the Medford City Council and having heard the news first from Fox 25 instead of our Administration is unacceptable. Withholding answers and refusing to answer questions from the public is also unacceptable. This is the second significant Burke Administration scandal in less than two years that results in Medford being primetime news for all the wrong reasons. This is the second Burke Administration scandal where a lack of transparency leaves residents wondering how these things happened and what else is there to worry about. Like many voters, I am left wondering why wasn’t news of this problem shared by the Mayor proactively instead of being discovered by Fox News?
Two scandals are two too many Mayor Burke. But City Hall appears to have learned nothing about the fact that 1) hiding facts, 2) withholding information from the public until forced to share by the media, and 3) providing vague details is no way to create confidence in our local government. It is no way to be transparent.
It’s time for transparency and integrity to be cornerstones of our Mayor’s administration. Taxpayers deserve more answers. The Mayor deserves to answer for the culture she’s supporting through a consistent lack of transparency. Like anywhere, accountability starts at the top.
I have requested that the City Council meet in executive session to get more answers and I will also request that more facts be released to help start rebuilding public trust that we so very much need.