Docket No. 474
In the Matter of William Reinertson
October 19, 1993
This Disposition Agreement (Agreement) is entered into
between the State Ethics Commission (Commission) and William
Reinertson (Reinertson) pursuant to s. 5 of the Commission's
Enforcement Procedures. This Agreement constitutes a consented to
final order enforceable in the Superior Court, pursuant to G.L.
c. 268B, s. 4(j).
On February 23, 1993, the Commission initiated, pursuant to
G.L. c. 268B, s. 4(a), a preliminary inquiry into possible
violations of the conflict of interest law, G.L. c. 268A, by
Reinertson. The Commission has concluded its inquiry and, on
October 19, 1993, found reasonable cause to believe that
Reinertson violated G.L. c. 268A.
The Commission and Reinertson now agree to the following
findings of fact and conclusions of law:
1. Reinertson was, during the time relevant, the elected
Town of Hopkinton Tree Warden . As such, Reinertson was a
municipal employee as that term is defined in G.L. c. 268A, s. 1.
2. As the tree warden, Reinertson was responsible for
awarding contracts for tree work within the town, supervising the
performance of those contracts and authorizing payment for work
3. At all relevant times, Reinertson independently owned and
operated two tree maintenance and landscaping companies, McDonald
Tree Service and McRein Tree Service.
4. Reinertson, in his capacity as Hopkinton Tree Warden,
awarded the following contracts to the above companies:
a. FY 1987: McDonald Tree Service, $3,226; 
b. FY 1988: McDonald Tree Service, $4,416;
c. FY 1989: McDonald Tree Service, $6,794;
d. FY 1990: McDonald Tree Service, $7,835; and
e. FY 1991: McRein Tree Service, $6,691.
5. Reinertson, as the Hopkinton Tree Warden, was responsible
for supervising whatever work was performed by McDonald Tree
Service and McRein Tree Service pursuant to these contracts.
6. On behalf of McDonald Tree Service and McRein Tree
Service, Reinertson prepared and sent the town bills for the
above work. The bills were on McDonald Tree Service stationery
and listed a Natick, Massachusetts address. The owner of the
property at the Natick address was a laborer for Reinertson who
had no financial interest in either McDonald Tree Service or
McRein Tree Service.
7. As tree warden, Reinertson verified that work was done
pursuant to the above contracts, authorized payment of the bills
he had himself submitted and forwarded those bills to the
selectmen for payment. The town thereafter sent checks to the
Natick address. The owner of the property at that address
contacted Reinertson when the checks arrived. Reinertson picked
up the checks, endorsed them on the back using the name of the
laborer and deposited them into his own personal checking
8. By using a Natick mailing address to bill for work
performed by McDonald Tree Service and McRein Tree Service,
Reinertson deliberately concealed the fact that he had a
financial interest in those tree department contracts.
9. Section 19 of G.L. c. 268A prohibits a municipal employee
from participating as such an employee in a particular matter in
which to his knowledge he has a financial interest.
10. The decisions to award the tree department contracts, as
well as the subsequent determinations that the work was properly
done and that the bills should be paid as described above, were
11. As set forth above, Reinertson participated as Hopkinton
Tree Warden in those particular matters by awarding, supervising
and authorizing payment of those contracts. Reinertson, as the
owner of the companies, had a financial interest in each of these
12. Reinertson, by awarding, supervising and authorizing
payment of the above contracts, participated in his official
capacity in particular matters in which he knew he had a
financial interest, thereby violating G.L. c. 268A, s. 19.
In view of the foregoing violations of G.L. c. 268A by
Reinertson, the Commission has determined that the public
interest would be served by the disposition of this matter
without further enforcement proceedings on the basis of the
following terms and conditions agreed to by Reinertson:
(1) that Reinertson pay the Commission the sum of ten
thousand dollars ($10,000.00) as a civil penalty for the
course of conduct violating G.L. c. 268A, s. 19 as stated
(2) that Reinertson waive all rights to contest the findings
of fact, conclusions of law and terms and conditions
contained in this Agreement in this or any other related
administrative or judicial proceedings to which the
Commission is or may be a party.
 Reinertson lost his bid for re-election in 1992.
 Due to a lack of complete records, the contract amounts