UPDATE: Slavin has ‘no confidence’ in two selectmen

Aug 1, 2020

Selectman Alan Slavin said that he has “no confidence” in Chair Peter Teitelbaum and Clerk Judith Whiteside at the Board of Selectmen’s July 28 meeting.

Slavin said that he has been disturbed by Teitelbaum and Whiteside’s apparent disregard for precedent and procedure since the board was reconstituted following the election. 

Since 2005, the position of chair and clerk has been filled on a rotating basis to give all the members of the board the chance to serve as clerk and, eventually, chair.

Following that procedure, Jim Munise should have been at least clerk and Whiteside should have been chair. However, Whiteside and Teitelbaum, with the support of Patrick Tropeano, elected Whiteside as clerk and Teitelbaum as chair. 

Slavin said that those votes blocked Munise from serving as clerk or chair and that Whiteside, Teitelbaum, and Tropeano are “not being honest or transparent about what’s going on.”

In addition to overriding established tradition in the reconstitution of the board, Slavin said Teitelbaum and Tropeano acted hypocritically in voting Whiteside onto the re-formed Charter Review group. 

Last year, Sandra Slavin applied to be on the Commission but was told that elected officials should not be on that board. Teitelbaum and Tropeano voted against appointing Sandra Slavin, Munise and former Selectman Mary Mackey Bruce voted yes, and Alan Slavin abstained. Slavin has a personal policy of abstention from votes about himself or a family member. 

At that point, Slavin informed the board that they had already put an elected official on the board: Robert Fitchenmeyer, who is a member of the Upper Cape School Committee.

When the board voted on Peter Dunlop, a Sewer Commission member, Teitelbaum and Tropeano voted against his appointment due to the fact that he holds another elected pherosition. 

This year, both Teitelbaum and Tropeano voted in favor of appointing all the current members of the Charter Review Committee to the newly formed ad-hoc group continuing the work, despite the fact that two members held other elected offices. 

Slavin and Munise objected to Whiteside’s bid to be on the board because she is now a selectman and Slavin said she could have “undue influence” on the committee’s work. 

During the July 14 Board of Selectmen meeting, Slavin made a motion against appointing Whiteside to the committee, which was seconded by Munise. The motion failed due to the vote being 2-2.

The following week, when Tropeano was present, a motion to appoint Whiteside to the board was made. Whiteside, Teitelbaum, and Tropeano voted yes, Slavin voted no, and Munise voted present. 

“How can it be not okay for someone and okay for someone else? They went out of their way to work it out. My feeling is that the ethics and morals of what's happening here is wrong. There’s no consistency, there’s no credibility anymore,” Slavin said.