CCC Chairwoman challenges suspension with lawsuit against Treasurer
Shannon O’Brien, who until two weeks ago, was Chairwoman of the Cannabis Control Commission, is now challenging her recent suspension by state treasurer, Deborah Goldberg, with a lawsuit in Suffolk Superior Court. O’Brien asserts that her removal by Goldberg from her position was unlawful. Goldberg, who appointed O’Brien in the role a year ago, suspended her in mid-September without initially offering any public rationale. According to O’Brien, she too was left in the dark regarding the reasons behind her suspension. This week Goldberg finally said that there were “several serious allegations” related to O’Brien’s behavior from an unnammed commissioner and a CCC staff member.
O’Brien’s complaint articulates her experience of facing, “resistance and insubordination from the staff from the first day she was sworn in as Chair.” She also says that she believes there is an “entrenched bureaucracy at the CCC,” one that leverages baseless allegations to prompt extensive internal investigations aimed at compelling resignations. O’Brien suggests that such tactics factored into the abrupt departure of former Chairman Steven Hoffman and that she has been a target of similar false and defamatory allegations meant to secure her removal. In response to the ongoing turbulence, CCC spokesperson Tim Caputo issued a statement affirming the Commission’s commitment to maintaining a positive and ethical work environment, free from any form of abusive or harassing behavior.