CANTON — Tempers flared Thursday night between a Canton selectman and a municipal board member announcing his resignation and making allegations against the selectman.

During the public comment time at the beginning of the selectmen meeting, Chris Dailey read his letter of resignation dated March 12 into the record. He said he was resigning from all town boards, including but not limited to the Budget Committee and Appeals Board, effective immediately.

Still reading his letter, Dailey lodged an official complaint with the board, saying he was resigning mostly because of an encounter with Board of Selectmen Chairman Donny Hutchins after the Feb. 26 special town meeting.

He accused Hutchins of shaking his hand and boasting that he had beaten Dailey. Dailey had long petitioned to get the fire chief position made an elected position instead of an appointed position. It was voted down the first time, approved the second time and defeated at the Feb. 26 meeting.

Dailey accused Hutchins of turning that town concern into a personal vendetta against Dailey. After airing more concerns, he asked Hutchins to resign.

Hutchins, whose term is up in June, said he had no intention of resigning and will seek re-election. He accused Dailey of writing unfounded accusations and disparaging remarks — the very thing Dailey accused Hutchins of — on Dailey’s Facebook page and asked Dailey to stop.


“I will do everything under my power to make sure you’re held accountable for it, do you understand what I’m saying?” Hutchins asked Dailey.

“Pardon me, but you’re threatening me!” Dailey yelled.

“I am not threatening you,” Hutchins yelled back.

Dailey loudly disagreed.

“That is not a threat!” Hutchins said.

“It’s the same thing!” Dailey yelled. “It’s a threat.”


“No, it’s not,” Hutchins said. “I just told you to cease and desist with any bad talk about me. For me, because I seem to be on trial right now. And that’s perfectly fine and your logic.

“But when you start saying that I said things that I didn’t, Chris, and when you start putting it down on paper and questioning my credibility, I’ll tell you what will happen,” Hutchins said. “I’m not threatening you. You should never feel threatened by me, because you and I have been on pretty good terms. Now, with that said, I will not resign. You will have to drag me out of here. Do you hear what I’m saying?”

“OK,” Dailey said.

“Now you do what you have to do,” Hutchins said.

“I will,” Dailey said.

“I will, too, and we’ll see where it lands,” Hutchins said.


Dailey agreed.

Hutchins said in a raised voice, “Frankly, you are in the minority. This town is getting damn sick and tired of you.”

“Oh yeah, oh yeah,” Dailey said shaking his head from side to side in disagreement.

“You’ve been told,” Hutchins said. “I’m done.”

Hutchins turned his attention to the board. “Now, if this board wants to do something with this,” he began as Dailey suddenly stood up and began yelling at Hutchins.

Selectman Malcolm Ray began repeatedly shouting at Dailey to sit down and shut up.


Dailey ignored Ray and continued to shout at Hutchins, berating him while Hutchins shouted back defending himself.

Eventually, Ray outshouted both men and Dailey, still fuming, sat down.

“Thank you,” Ray said. “We got your letters, we’ve heard both sides. We’re done. Anybody else have any public comment? If not, let’s proceed.”

There was no further comment, so the board moved into its meeting agenda.

Dailey left near the end of the meeting, taking his video camera with him that had been recording the meeting from the Town Office counter.

Before entering an executive session for a personnel matter and after Dailey had left, Hutchins apologized to the board and small crowd of residents and municipal officials for losing his temper.

[email protected]

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or login first for digital access. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.