, Derry, New Hampshire

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July 13, 2013

Administrator on leave, under investigation

DERRY — Town Administrator John Anderson yesterday was placed on paid administrative leave pending an investigation by the New Hampshire State Police.

The Town Council met in an emergency nonpublic session for about 45 minutes late yesterday afternoon.

After emerging from that session, Council Chairman Michael Fairbanks announced three resolutions the council had passed, all unanimously.

The first was to put Anderson on leave. The second was to appoint Larry Budreau, human resources director and assistant town administrator, as acting town administrator. The third was to appoint Budreau as the “sole spokesperson for the town of Derry” regarding Anderson’s situation.

“Certain allegations involving the town administrator have been brought to the town’s attention,” Budreau said after the meeting. “These allegations do not involve the town. The matter has been referred to the New Hampshire State Police for further investigation and Mr. Anderson has been placed on administrative leave with pay under the provisions of the charter until that investigation is complete.”

Anderson, 50, came to Derry in October 2010, from a similar position in Boothbay, Maine. He was one of 121 applicants for the Derry job.

He was hired at just over $100,000 a year when he accepted the post. He was given a raise after his first year, a 2 percent raise his second year and his contract is up for reconsideration in October.

Asked whether Anderson had been at work yesterday, Budreau said he worked “for a portion of the day.”

The administrative leave took effect immediately. Anderson was not at the emergency council meeting.

Budreau, who has worked for the town for seven and a half years, was named assistant town administrator in October 2011. Prior to the council creating that position, Budreau had served as acting administrator in Anderson’s absence — and in prior administrations.

Asked whether the investigation was criminal in nature, Budreau declined to comment. Pushed further and asked whether state police would be involved in the investigation if the concerns weren’t criminal in nature, Budreau still declined to comment.

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