RyeTV employee Andrew Dapolite was reprimanded on March 8 for using City digital equipment for personal matters during work hours.
RyeTV employee Andrew Dapolite was reprimanded on March 8 for using City digital equipment for personal matters during work hours. In a letter that Dapolite sent to the various media around Rye, including this newspaper, he revealed that City Manager Scott Pickup had cited him for a number of instances of violating the Automated Systems policy.
Mr. Dapolite has accused RyeTV manager Nicole Nevitsky and City Manager Scott Pickup of ethical violations related to the broadcast of a City workshop. His allegations are due to be reviewed by the City’s Board of Ethics in early April.
At the March 14 Council meeting, Rye City Republican Chairman Tony Piscionere rose to speak for Mr. Dapolite and against the decision to refer his allegations to the Board of Ethics. “There’s a stain on our community,” said Mr. Piscionere. “Ugly allegations have been made, and the situation has to be fairly vetted. I don’t think the Board of Ethics is the right body. The Council was elected to put in place a process and treat the allegations seriously.”
Mr. Piscionere recommended two solutions: first, for the Council to investigate the allegations themselves; or, second, to hire an outside attorney to conduct an investigation.
Catherine Parker thanked Mr. Piscionere for raising the matter. “To quote John Adams,” said Parker, “Facts are a stubborn thing. The Board of Ethics is only allowed to advise. I hope the process doesn’t come back to haunt us.”
Councilman Joe Sack concurred, saying: “Sending it to the Board of Ethics is a mistake.”
Mayor French defended the Council decision: “It’s a personnel matter.”
“Having the Board of Ethics review this matter is a perfect small town solution, “said Councilman Peter Jovanovich. “We have tens of millions of capital projects planned. I would only be willing to spend money on the process after we have done something on flooding, improved intersections, and repaired or replaced aging infrastructure.”
The Council takes the allegations very seriously, said Councilwoman Laura Brett. “The Board of Ethics can take a look, interview people in private. This is the way to resolve it.”
Councilman Rich Filippi underscored his belief that other matters are far more important for the Council to consider. “I have spoken to a lot of people about this issue, and nobody really cares about these silly things. Let’s move on to get done the City business we were elected to do.”