Norwich Ethics Commission: City historian cannot be paid for Norwich lectures, consulting

Norwich – City Historian Dale Plummer cannot accept speaking fees or enter into a contract to use his expertise as a professional historian if the work involves Norwich subjects, the Ethics Commission voted Monday in response to his request for an advisory opinion on the issues.

Plummer asked the commission for opinions on two issues, whether he can accept “honorariums” for speaking to schools, civic groups and other entities and whether he can enter into a contract with the Norwich Historical Society to create a Norwich Freedom Trail walking tour and brochure. Plummer would have received $35 per hour for up to 100 hours of work, plus a $100 travel stipend in the proposed contract.

Plummer is unpaid as city historian, but his position calls for him to promote Norwich history, including giving lectures on historical issues. He also is expected to “serve as a liaison among the city’s museums, libraries and historical associations and with similar outside groups, to encourage historical coordination, cooperation and resource sharing.”

The Ethics Commission voted unanimously on both issues, but added an addendum that Plummer could speak to outside groups about non-Norwich historical events and issues.

Plummer did not attend Monday’s meeting and could not be reached for comment Monday evening.

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