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AYER — A complaint from police Chief Richard Rizzo against Selectman Frank Maxant was removed from the June 19 Board of Selectmen agenda and rescheduled for an offline mediation with board Chairman Gary Luca.

The switch was offered by Luca, Maxant said just prior to the June 20 mediation. Though Maxant previously said he’d address Rizzo’s complaint in open session, he termed Luca’s offer a “good idea.”

“It seems to make more sense than washing our dirty linen in public,” said Maxant.

Luca couldn’t be reached for comment June 20, but had expressed concerns that Board of Selectmen meetings had taken on a “circus” atmosphere before he became chairman June 12. The open session to discuss the complaint was scheduled prior to that meeting.

Rizzo couldn’t be reached for comment June 20, and had declined to offer insight into the complaint the previous day.

Maxant has butted heads with Rizzo several times in recent years. The issues typically stem from Maxant inquiring into specific incidents involving the police or the “performance” of certain officers.

While Maxant has maintained he wants the highest possible level of service for all residents in town, Rizzo has, on multiple occasions, accused Maxant of circumventing procedures and protocols with his methods.

This complaint was more of the same, Maxant said June 20.

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