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Thurmont commissioners ask mayor to resign

Stephanie Mlot
News-Post Staff

(2/19) Mayor Martin Burns said no to Thurmont commissioners' request that he resign.

In a statement read at the town meeting Monday night, Commissioner Glenn Muth made a motion that the Board of Commissioners ask Burns to resign. The commissioners voted 3-2 in favor.

"I will not resign from my position as mayor, and that's the end of it," Burns said.

Allegations made by Burns that a commissioner sent a copy of town records revealing names and dollar amounts due in electric bills to The Frederick News-Post have caused friction within the board.

The list of arrears was not printed.

Muth said he shares the mayor's concern about the release of the information to the public, but said that for the mayor to unilaterally decide and declare in a public forum that a member of the board circulated the records was shocking.

"The mayor does not have a single shred of evidence to support his allegation," Muth said.

Muth said he is outraged that Burns accused the board of sending information to The News-Post, and said the mayor disrespected the board, and more importantly, the citizens.

"It is with great sadness now that I motion that the Thurmont Board of Commissioners no longer has confidence in your ability to lead us, and therefore ask for your immediate resignation."

In a hand vote, commissioners Muth, Ron Terpko and Bob Lookingbill voted in favor; Wayne Hooper and Burns were opposed.

The mayor refused the request.

Burns said his comments about the potential ability for the commissioners to have given the information were not over the top, since the board members are the only ones who received the records.

"I did not say that any one commissioner did send anything to The News-Post," Burns said. "I do believe that somebody did. I just don't know if somebody did. And I don't have any facts to base that on. It's just my thought."

Resident Randy Cubbedge said the town has enough problems.

"We have enough issues the press can use in a factual manner. We don't need to stir the pot," he said.

Burns explained that Muth's statement was not a legal motion, so he could decline it.

Terpko said that for 12 years, he and the mayor have been going at each other for different reasons, saying sometimes they can be each other's best friend or worst enemy.

"What I saw last Monday, I have never seen or witnessed from him before," Terpko said. "That is why I voted the way I voted."

Burns told residents that if they look back at the last eight years and say they want someone else running the town, it's their prerogative.

"That's democracy in action, and that's the greatest thing we can hope for," he said. "I'll always try to do better than the day before, especially when I put my foot in my mouth."

Thurmont's mayoral election is set for October.

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