The Massachusetts Ethics Commission fined former Andover Youth Services Assistant Director Glenn Wilson $9,000 for taking at least $17,500 from a nonprofit between 2016 and 2021.

Wilson signed a disposition agreement admitting the violations, the Ethics Commission said in a news release Tuesday. The finding said in 2016 Wilson and former AYS Director William Fahey met with the Hurston Family Foundation, which agreed to provide funding for AYS building maintenance, programming and staff.

“Wilson’s receipt of private compensation relating to his employment as Assistant Director of Andover Youth Services violated the conflict of interest law’s prohibition against municipal employees receiving compensation from anyone other than the municipality in relation to a matter in which the municipality is a party or has a direct and substantial interest,” the Ethics Commission said. “In addition, where Wilson was given the private compensation for or because of his public position, he also violated the law’s prohibition against public employees receiving anything of substantial value, unless authorized by law or regulation, for or because of their official positions.” 

The Foundation sent the money to the Andover Youth Foundation, another local nonprofit, which would disburse the money to AYS. In May 2016, Hurston sent $3,000 to the Andover Youth Foundation and earmarked the money for $500 payments to Wilson, Fahey and four other AYS employees.

North Andover-based Hurston had $3.2 million in assets in made $126,000 in distributions in 2020, including $40,000 to Andover Youth Foundation, according to filings with the Internal Revenue Service. That $40,000 amounted to 17.7 percent of the $226,559 Andover Youth Foundation had in 2020.

By the end of 2020, Hurston had made nine more donations to Andover Youth Foundation for AYS. The Ethics Commission’s finding said Wilson edited Fahey’s letters to Hurston, saying the donations would e used as “merit pay” for full-time AYS employees.

“By editing the letters securing private compensation for himself and other Andover Youth Services staff in his public capacity and submitting them using his town email account, Wilson violated the conflict of interest law’s prohibition against public employees using their official positions to obtain for themselves or others substantially valuable unwarranted privileges,” the Commission said.

Andover Town Manager Andrew Flanagan fired Fahey in May 2021 for unspecified misconduct. Less than a month later, Fahey sued Flanagan in Essex Superior Court. The case is currently in the discovery phase.

In his complaint, Fahey said Flanagan “targeted” him for termination for more than five years before firing him on May 10, 2021 after a town-commissioned, independent investigation found Flanagan had “sufficient evidence” to fire Fahey, even though the investigation found some of the allegations, including that he had inappropriate contact with a minor, were not credible.

Andover denied most of the allegations in Fahey’s lawsuit in its response to the complaint.

Fahey has repeatedly denied the allegations and disputes the independent investigator’s report. His firing led to the resignation of AYS’s entire full-time staff in September 2021.

File photo.

One thought on “Ethics Commission Fines Ex-AYS Employee”
  1. Topic: Ethics Commission Fine

    Often it costs many times more to fight a fine instead of paying it.
    It’s help to be wealthy to spend tens of thousands of dollars on lawyers to fight a $9000 fine.

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