Nutter
Nutter

LOWELL -- Lowell Election Commission member Gerry Nutter, whose appointment generated controversy last fall, announced Thursday he is resigning from the post.

Nutter's term on the four-member board was not set to expire until 2017. Nutter was appointed by then-City Manager Bernie Lynch last fall.

Nutter told The Sun any questions about his resignation should be directed to City Manager Kevin Murphy, whom he said had received his resignation.

"I have no comment otherwise and will make no other statement," Nutter wrote in an email.

Murphy said he thanks Nutter for his service and will include the opening on the Election Commission on the list of boards and commissions he plans to advertise in The Sun in the near future.

Election commissioners are budgeted to make $1,200 annually.

The City Council voted 7-2 last October to approve Lynch's proposed appointment of Nutter. Then-Councilor and current Mayor Rodney Elliott and Councilor Ed Kennedy were the votes in opposition.

Elliott raised concerns about derogatory comments Nutter made about a local woman on his blog, implying she was a prostitute.

Several prominent women in the community criticized the appointment in light of the comments, and some City Council candidates, including now-Councilor Corey Belanger, called for Nutter's resignation. Nutter was also criticized for blogging critically about elected officials and others.

"I'm OK with it," Kennedy said of Nutter's resignation. "Hopefully, the city manager will come up a good replacement."

Belanger said while he thanks Nutter for his service, he was disappointed Nutter continued to criticize public officials online as an election commissioner. Nutter lived up to his public pledge to stop blogging, but has posted comments, sometimes critical, about local politicians on a Facebook page.

"At the very least, a reprimand was imminent," said Belanger.

Follow Lyle Moran on Twitter @lylemoran.