Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

I hope during this holiday season that everyone has a very Merry Christmas, happy holidays and a safe, joyous new year.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Monday's Disorder

This past Monday Roanoke City Council met to discuss a number of items affecting the city. Entering the meeting I felt like there was a lot of work to do and that we could be productive in moving towards budget preparation for the next fiscal year. Unfortunately, this didn't happen.

I have no other way of describing Monday's events but that it was a circus. As many of you know, the Market Building has become a hot political topic these days, largely as a matter of maneuvering and with a great showing of disrespect for city staff. The conversation (which was more one person talking than any actual conversation) took 2.5 hours, contained little in the way of substantive or pragmatic solutions to the coming difficulty that the market vendors will experience during renovation of the building, and was clearly an attempt to score political points.

I understand that we work in an environment on Council that does include politics. But Monday's meeting and particularly the conversation regarding the Market Building was a new low in my mind. All parliamentary procedure was ignored, one member of Council spoke nearly the entire time, and the disrespectful treatment of city staff was totally unacceptable.

Whether one agrees or disagrees with any position on the Market Building, creating chaos during a Council meeting to gain political favor, inappropriately treating staff (or anyone for that matter) and dominating most of the afternoon to fulfill a personal agenda is wrong. It should not have happened and I've already requested that Council discuss this at our very next meeting in order to try to prevent any one member of Council from acting in such an unprofessional way.

The citizens of Roanoke have a right to be upset at the conduct of the December 7th Council meeting and to expect more from their representatives.