Conflict of Interest

As many folks around Manchester are doubtless aware -- and if you are not already you soon will be if you follow the prelude to March town meeting at all-- a proposal to increase the amount of municipal support the town of Manchester gives to the Mark Skinner Library, soon to be known as the Manchester Community Library, will be a special article on the town warning.

Similar articles have been part of the discussion at town meeting since 2003. This year, after three years when the library's officials sought no increase in the amount of support, they will be coming before the townspeople and taxpayers to seek an increase of about $44,000, to about $198,000. Ordinarily, this request would have prompted at least one editorial comment by now. But as many readers may know, a conflict of interest is in place here, with the spouse of the Journal's editor currently serving, as luck would have it, as the president of the library's board of trustees.

Given that, The Journal will not take an editorial stance on the library's funding request. It's not for lack of interest. It is because of a conflict of interest.

While The Journal can't comment editorially on the subject, we invite our readers to help pick up the slack. Opinion pieces and letters to the editor are welcome - as they always are - to help inform the public on this subject in the weeks preceding town meeting. We will do our best to get all who submit something in writing (send by email to into the newspaper and on our website in a timely manner. Even more importantly, we encourage readers who are Manchester residents to mark March 1 on their calendars and plan to attend town meeting.


If you'd like to leave a comment (or a tip or a question) about this story with the editors, please email us. We also welcome letters to the editor for publication; you can do that by filling out our letters form and submitting it to the newsroom.

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