Trumbull Ethics Commission to hold hearing into councilman’s actions

TRUMBULL — The Ethics Commission at its June 11 meeting decided there was probable cause to hold a public hearing into the actions of Tony Scinto, a Republican town councilman and member of the Redistricting Committee. Scinto, at the committee’s video-conferenced May 9 meeting, said he was seeking “payback” against Richard White, a volunteer mapmaker, over a perceived slight dating back a decade.

White, in his ethics complaint, said Scinto had violated Section 2-524 and 2-526 in the town’s Code of Ethics. Specifically, White said Scinto had failed to discharge his duties conscientiously and impartially, and he had failed to treat a member of the public with tact and courtesy.

The incident occurred as the committee was discussing a voting map that White, a Geographic Information System (GIS) professional with 27 years experience and a member of the town’s Land Acquisition Committee, had prepared using U.S. Census data. Scinto had stated his opinion that the map was flawed.

“Listen, I could really get into this map, and really cause a lot of trouble because this map is atrocious,” he said during the May 9 meeting.

Fellow committee member Tom Kelly objected to Scinto’s characterization, saying the map had been prepared by “highly skilled people” using scientific data.

“Since you opened the door about skill, let’s talk about the person who drew this map,” Scinto said. “I’ve been waiting a long time for payback on this one.”

White in his complaint requested Scinto’s comments be removed from the meeting’s video and minutes, and that Scinto apologize and retract his comments.