Republican First Selectman candidate George Temple issued a news release response to First Selectman Mary Ann Drayton-Rogers' press conference regarding payment of bond money in the amount of $100,000 to the town for insurance that it took out for the job performance of former , who is accused of stealing more than $670,000.
"In my opinion, in no way does receiving $100,000 in insurance money represent closure in this matter," Temple said. "It is ironic that Bernie Madoff perpetrated the largest Ponzi scheme in history and is now in a jail cell and has been for quite some time. He was arrested in the beginning of 2009. To date, it has not even been ascertained how much money was taken from the Town of Oxford by our former tax collector. Although, her share of her home has been attached (to a town civil suit), we have no idea how much money that represents. She was allowed to keep her Town pension to pay her attorney.
"It appears we are no closer to justice in this matter than we were a year and a half ago, despite having appointed committees and other actions by the current administration," Temple said. "We need decisive moral leadership to express our outrage at the delay of this matter. Justice delayed is justice denied."
Temple said he questions the timing of the payment from the insurance company and the timing of the announcement because it is so close to the election. Although Drayton-Rogers is not seeking re-election, her administrative aide, Joe Calabrese, is running as a Democrat against Temple. Drayton-Rogers acknowleged Calabrese at the press concerence on Thursday because Calabrese was on a three-member committee that investigated the missing money in the tax collector's office.
"This is not a political matter, it is a matter that deeply concerns the citizens of this fine community," Temple said.
Temple said he proposed creating a police commission to handle complaints or suggestions regarding the policing of the town.
"If such a commission were in existence today, it would be able to bring to bear the full moral outrage of the Town of Oxford at this crime and encourage the prompt disposition of this matter," he said. "The police commission, of course, would be responsible to aid the State Police and Oxford Police in the smooth administration of justice."
Temple, an attorney who once served as Oxford's town attorney, said he believes auditors "bear some responsibility for this matter not being detected over the years during which the money was taken."
"Instead, the town still employs the and accepts the same auditing standards," he said. "This is a curiosity that has yet to be explained."