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We have received quite a few calls and emails about the issue of Groton’s town manager, Mark Haddad, and his controversial communications with a Groton woman.

To say the town is split over the way the issue was handled would be an understatement.

Having a town manager-form of government is new for Groton. The greater involvement and authority the town manager has over the previous chief administrative officer hasn’t sat well with some folks. This latest wrinkle has only added to their dissatisfaction.

But what we wonder is, there have been a number of past town employees whose performance while on duty resulted in a range of reactions, including firing. Were those matters handled so publicly as was this one?

The selectmen issued a press release and then held a very public press conference with the town manager front and center. They said they’d found nothing unlawful and that the relationship was consensual. Haddad reportedly apologized repeatedly for not handling the matter better.

Was this worse than operating a still on town property? Or worse than the conduct of other personnel who were dismissed from town service for misconduct?

As a newspaper, we respect and require transparency in government. But in this case, we wonder if it was warranted and if it was fair when compared to the way other similar matters were handled.

Though we admit to not knowing all there is to know about this matter, we do know that we haven’t seen a dog-and-pony show like that press conference in a long, long time.

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