Seaton town clerk resigns following inquiry

But ‘gagging order’ prevents details of the internal investigation being revealed

SEATON’S Town Clerk has resigned following an internal investigation.

David Mears was removed from his post in February after a meeting of the town council’s personnel committee

The decision to suspended him from his duties came after members went into private session to discuss a number of “strictly confidential” items.

Afterwards it was announced that Mr Mears had been suspended on full pay, pending an investigation.

This week the council revealed that he had now left their employment.

A brief statement simply read : “Mr Mears has resigned from his position as town clerk and responsible finance officer.”

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Philip Higginson, who as taken over as temporary town clerk, said an agreement reached by both parties meant no further statement would be made by either of them.

Former Mayor Bob Palacio confirmed that they were not allowed to reveal any details about the matter.

An extraordinary meeting of the town council will now be held on Tuesday, May 31, when members will go into secret session to discuss recruiting a new town clerk and also preparations for the arrival and induction of the new town development manager.

* Mr Mears was appointed Seaton Town Clerk and Responsible Financial Officer on November 3, 2008.

His duties, as defined by the council, included:

* Carrying out the policy decisions made by the council.

• As chief administrative office being responsible for seeing that the business of the council runs smoothly and in accordance with the law.

• Managing the financial transactions of the council and keeping appropriate records of such.

• Carrying out all clerical and secretarial tasks for the council.

• Guiding and advising the council on matters of law and procedure.

As well as working for Seaton council Mr Mears also served as a member of the town council at Chard, where he lives, for some years, before resigning his seat last December.