Windham councilors apologize after heated meeting

Windham Councilor Jarrod Maxfield apologizes for his tone during a previous meeting on Jan. 30. 

WINDHAM — Two Windham Town Councilors offered apologies this week after tempers had flared and accusations were made during a council meeting in late January. 

The apologies came after a two-hour special meeting in executive session, which caused the council’s regularly scheduled Feb. 13 meeting to start more than an hour late. 

Council Chairwoman Donna Chapman began the regular meeting by apologizing for a misstatement she made at the Jan. 30 meeting when she alleged that Councilor Jarrod Maxfield had videotaped or video-chatted with a constituent and recorded the conversation. Maxfield denied the allegation at the time and seemed perplexed by what Chapman meant. 

“I just want to put something out there and clarify this, that I believe it was last meeting, I misspoke about something that we were discussing with Councilor Maxfield and I,” Chapman said Tuesday night. “He was not videotaping or video-chatting, he was messaging. So I want that very clear because there’s a big, distinct difference. So I would apologize for that misstatement.”

Maxfield thanked Chapman for the apology and offered his own later in the meeting. 

“I would like to thank the Chair for your comments at the beginning, and I do accept that, and I do thank you very much,” Maxfield said. 

At the Jan. 30 meeting, Maxfield had questioned whether other councilors had coordinated with each other to oppose former Councilor David Nadeau’s appointment to several volunteer roles, including a vacant seat on the Planning Board. 

Maxfield apologized Tuesday night for the confrontational tone he took during that earlier meeting. 

“It’s something some folks have called ugly politics, and some people have called a welcome change,” Maxfield said. “No matter what side you’re on, I would like to apologize for my tone and my demeanor.” 

Maxfield noted that he was “agitated” at the previous meeting by what he thought was an “irregular vote” on Nadeau’s failed appointments. 

“Regardless of that, whatever my personal feelings are, my tone and my demeanor, I do need to work better on being more polite and concise and professional,” Maxfield continued. “It’s a tone that we deserve to have here in the Council, and a tone that our constituents deserve.” ” 

Matt Junker can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 123 or Follow him on Twitter: @MattJunker.

Windham Councilor Jarrod Maxfield apologizes for his tone during a previous meeting on Jan. 30.