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Letter to the Editor: Mimmo defends work with MCAD

by | May 14, 2024 | Letter to Editor

I write as a candidate for Hopkinton Select Board in response to a letter to the editor offered by Martin Green.

Mr. Green is the respondent, or defendant, in a case I tried with co-counsel as an attorney for the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination (MCAD). As it has been since 1948, the MCAD is a state agency committed to the eradication of unlawful discrimination and retaliation in our commonwealth, which was precisely what was accomplished in Mr. Green’s case. Not only did I try the case ethically, but unquestionably I did so consistent with the law, regulations and commission policies.

At a public hearing, or a trial, a duly appointed hearing officer heard and considered all of the evidence, including all of the evidence Mr. Green and his legal counsel offered. After weighing all of the evidence, the hearing officer determined that Mr. Green both discriminated against and retaliated against one of his tenants and another resident.

As a result of his illegal conduct as determined by the hearing officer, Mr. Green was ordered to compensate the complainants, or plaintiffs, $30,000 in total for the emotional distress his discrimination and retaliation conduct caused. Further illustrating the seriousness of his unlawful conduct, the hearing officer also ordered Mr. Green personally to pay a civil penalty in the amount of $7,500, and his property management business was likewise ordered to pay an additional civil penalty of $5,000. Mr. Green was also ordered to complete training. The hope is that by learning the very basics of the law, Mr. Green will refrain from further discriminatory acts, and instead treat his tenants respectfully and properly when they seek reasonable accommodation for their disabilities.

I take my work with the commission seriously, and irrespective of Mr. Green’s comments, I am proud of the work in this case. Mr. Green was held accountable, and I am confident that the public, particularly those disabled residents who seek reasonable accommodations, will be better off for it. It is precisely this kind of dedication to respecting the public interest that I hope to bring to our Select Board.

I invite you to read the decision and judge for yourselves: mbmllc.com/massachusetts-commission-against-discrimination-joshua-fortinand-nicole-evangel.pdf.

— Peter M. Mimmo, candidate for Select Board

Editor’s note: The opinions and comments expressed in letters to the editor are those of the writers and not necessarily those of the Independent. Submissions should be no more than 400 words and must include the writer’s name and contact information for verification. Letters should be relevant and not primarily for the purpose of promoting an organization or event or thanking sponsors or volunteers. Letters may be edited by the Independent staff for space, errors or clarification, and the Independent offers no guarantee that every letter will be published. For a schedule of deadlines for letters and other submissions for the print edition, click here.

5 Comments

  1. Shannon Frenaldi

    I read the “finding” of MCAD and find it interesting. A few slick renters want to keep a dog despite dogs not being allowed in the rental and fashion the dog as being medically necessary as the owner (a diabetic) perports that thr dog helps him “sense” his blood sugar level. What a load of crap.

    So, after a “complaint” is made by the people who want to keep the dog, MCAD goes on to spend what was likely $250,000 to $500,000 on an “investigation”.

    All we need as a Selectman is another jail-house lawyer with a propensity to spend money foolishly. Would be a great asset to a Town who’s main problem is spending money we don’t have!!

    The State should investagate MCAD for even accepting this case. The case was not about denial of accomadating a tentant with disiabilities, but one of several shysters trying to game the system at the taxpayers expense.

    Reply
    • Matt Palmisano

      To suggest that the investigation of the case cost 250k is beyond absurd. Your comments make clear that you are anti- government and anti- enforcement of existing state and federal law. You don’t like the law, then petition your elected officials to change it; don’t make up outlandish and defamatory claims against those tasked with enforcing the law.

      Reply
  2. Marty Green

    Mr.Mimmo’s response to my letter of the hearing officer’s decision is in part correct. However Mr. Mimmo fails to state the decision is under appeal as the hearing officer determined the pit bull was an “emotional assistance dog”, without any evidence by MCAD or the tenant’s boyfriend that the boyfriend required an emotional assistance animal from a medical professional as required by federal law.
    Most importantly, Mr. Mimmo does not answer the question, why he didn’t report rental assistance fraud by the tenant? It is my understanding, all state employees receive yearly training on what actions they should take when they learn of such an act. Mr. Mimmo what action did you take? Mr.Mimmo states he acted in compliance with MCAD policies, is it not MCAD policy to report rental assistance fraud?
    Since he does not dispute my recollection of his statements, one can assume they are an accurate representation of his words. Mr. Mimmo, as an officer of the court and state employee, are you not supposed to seek the truth? If so, why didn’t you seek professional advice prior to the public hearing and in the 3 years you were lead counsel, if the tenant’s boyfriend could have “self-trained” his pit bull?
    These are just two of the many reasons why I have requested an external investigation of MCAD actions over the last 7 years. Mr. Mimmo, will you join me an in requesting an investigation into your words and actions?
    Mr.Mimmo, as I have stated to you and many other MCAD employees, please don’t lecture me on the rights of the disabled. Having a brother with special needs, I know fully well how people with disabilities are discriminated against.
    Marty Green

    Reply
  3. Sam

    Does the Select Board really need an angry, smug, condescending lawyer who spends his time proudly defending rent-dodging pit bull owners? Hopkinton can and should do better.

    Reply
    • Matt Palmisano

      It sounds like Mr. Mimmo did his job as a lawyer. The conclusion of fraud is yours, and Mr. Mimmo is not required to report your accusation.

      If the MCAD found such fraud, it is still not Mr. Mimmo’s responsibility, as an employee of that organization to handle reporting. It would be done by the leadership of that organization or the hearing officer.

      The fact that you’ve tried reporting it to anyone who will listen – unsuccessfully- says a lot about the likely merit of your claim.

      At any rate, none of this relates to Mr. Mimmos fitness to be a Selectman, and the town should certainly not punish Mr Mimmo for the allegations of a disgruntled, adjudicated guilty party. Are we a town that respects the judicial system (even if we don’t always agree with it ) or not

      Reply

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