OGUNQUIT, Maine — Town Manager Thomas A. Fortier, who was charged by police last week with theft and official oppression, has been placed on paid administrative leave by the Ogunquit Select Board.

“Our responsibility now is to cooperate fully with law enforcement and to conduct our own inquiry,” Select Board Chairman Barbara Dailey said in a statement issued to the Journal Tribune on Saturday. The Select Board will meet Monday night to begin that process, she said.

Fortier, 51, of 9 Bowdoin Drive in Falmouth was issued a summons on the two Class E misdemeanor counts Thursday by Wells police after the Ogunquit Police Department asked its Wells counterparts to investigate irregularities in parking fee practices.

“Our standard practice in these circumstances is to place our employee on paid administrative leave,” Dailey said, confirming Fortier’s status. She pointed out that personnel matters are confidential under state law and said the board cannot make any detailed statement.

An emergency special meeting of the Select Board has been scheduled for 6 p.m. Monday, Aug. 8, at the Ogunquit Fire Department. The agenda calls for an executive session to consult with legal counsel on a personnel issue.

“The charges are a result of an alleged incident on July 4 involving the theft of an undisclosed amount of money from improperly charged parking fees,” Wells police Sgt. Gerald Congdon said in a statement issued late Friday afternoon. “These fees were obtained under the direction of Mr. Fortier to employees in a parking lot owned by the Town of Ogunquit that is normally free parking after 4 p.m.”

Congdon wrote that the money was collected by employees and taken to Fortier. He said the unspecified amount has “gone unaccounted for and not turned over to the town of Ogunquit.”

Maine’s criminal code says “a person is guilty of official oppression if, being a public servant and acting with the intention to benefit himself or another or to harm another, he knowingly commits an unauthorized act which purports to be an act of his office, or knowingly refrains from performing a duty imposed on him by law or clearly inherent in the nature of his office.”

Fortier is scheduled to appear at York District Court on Oct. 27. If convicted, he could be sentenced to a maximum of six months in jail on each of the two counts.

Dailey said Ogunquit Fire Chief Mark O’Brien is serving as interim town manager, which he routinely does during town manager absences.

“We are confident that all town operations will continue smoothly with Mark at the helm and the support of the Select Board as may be required,” Dailey said.

Fortier was hired as town manager in February 2009. He served as town manager of Richmond from 2007-2009 and as a neighborhood administrator for Portland from 1989-2006, according to his LinkedIn profile. He is a graduate of Thornton Academy in Saco, the University of Maine and the University of New England.

Police are asking anyone who was charged to park in an Ogunquit parking lot after 4 p.m. July 4 to contact Sgt. Chad Arrowsmith at 646-9354 or carrowsmith@wellstown.org. Arrowsmith said Saturday that a few people have stepped forward.

Attempts to reach Fortier were unsuccessful. One telephone listing for him has been disconnected; another does not accept messages.