Those who used to attend the Tiverton financial town meetings (FTMs) will remember town Maintenance Foreman Robert Martin’s annual practice of moving the entire budget without amendment. Now, Channel 10’s investigative reporters say they have filmed him in the regular practice of working on his own rental properties while on the clock.
10’s I-Team estimated that, during their two-month investigation, the local Council 94 president spent 60% of his time on the clock doing his personal work, using the truck that he leases to the town for $55 per week, bringing waste to the dump, and even using town employees for help. One such employee tells reporter Parker Gavigan that he reported Martin and was himself fired for his trouble.
The question that Tiverton residents may want answered is how a town employee with responsibility managing others could only spend 40% of his time actually doing his job and not raise any red flags. In the video, a blank-faced Town Administrator Jim Goncalo curtly answers “yes” to the question of whether he’s surprised.
Speaking to Martin, Gavigan asks, “If I’m paying the tax bill here in town, is this what I deserve?”
“Oh, absolutely,” replied Martin.