Council Should Be Transparent

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pj bennett
Posts: 118
Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2018 3:56 pm

Council Should Be Transparent

Postby pj bennett » Wed Feb 05, 2020 6:23 pm

I was watching the Senate vote on The Abuse of Power on television this afternoon. The clerk did a roll call and announced each Senator's vote of Guilty or Not Guilty.

Very public.

That got me to thinking.

So far, there have been two Executive Sessions to discuss the qualifications of each candidate, who has applied for the vacant Council-At-Large chair.

In the first session, 8 applicants were cut, without the benefit of an interview.
Fifteen remained.

I'm assuming, that the list of 15 applicants got whittled down further during this past Monday's Executive Session, now that all have been interviewed.

Another Committee Of the Whole meeting has been scheduled for this coming Monday, February 10th.

Now, that all interviews have been completed, I feel that each council member should go on record, as to whom they want to fill the vacancy and the criteria used, as a group, to make their decision.

No more private discussions in Executive Sessions.
Perhaps, that's already the intent - to make this an open process.

If not... I feel that's it time.

The decision process should be transparent.


Kate McCarthy
Posts: 468
Joined: Mon Jun 20, 2005 1:25 pm
Location: Lakewood

Re: Council Should Be Transparent

Postby Kate McCarthy » Wed Feb 05, 2020 7:55 pm

pj bennett wrote:I was watching the Senate vote on The Abuse of Power on television this afternoon. The clerk did a roll call and announced each Senator's vote of Guilty or Not Guilty.

Very public.

That got me to thinking.

So far, there have been two Executive Sessions to discuss the qualifications of each candidate, who has applied for the vacant Council-At-Large chair.

In the first session, 8 applicants were cut, without the benefit of an interview.
Fifteen remained.

I'm assuming, that the list of 15 applicants got whittled down further during this past Monday's Executive Session, now that all have been interviewed.

Another Committee Of the Whole meeting has been scheduled for this coming Monday, February 10th.

Now, that all interviews have been completed, I feel that each council member should go on record, as to whom they want to fill the vacancy and the criteria used, as a group, to make their decision.

No more private discussions in Executive Sessions.
Perhaps, that's already the intent - to make this an open process.

If not... I feel that's it time.

The decision process should be transparent.

I couldn't agree more.

I read somewhere that 'employment' issues can rightfully be held under executive session to defend the process. I disagree. This is first and foremost a political appointment. This process, that has already been partially shrouded in executive session, needs to be given sunlight. Why Jenn Pae was given an interview and Brian Essie was not raised issues to me around the decision making process. And I would not want either to be appointed to the vacant seat. Let us see how the sausage is made so we can assess the sausage makers in the future when they are up for reelection.


Dan Alaimo
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Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 8:49 am

Re: Council Should Be Transparent

Postby Dan Alaimo » Thu Feb 06, 2020 12:33 am

I'm on the record somewhere here as supporting the human resource aspect of this process, but council blew that out of the water with the early elimination of Brian Essi. Brian is a Republican and some perhaps have personal issues with him.

Open it up.


"In campaigns it's all about what you say...
"In government it's all about what you do...
"And the great ones know the difference."
Former NYS Governor Mario Cuomo (1932-2015)
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Jim O'Bryan
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Re: Council Should Be Transparent

Postby Jim O'Bryan » Thu Feb 06, 2020 7:52 am

pj bennett wrote:No more private discussions in Executive Sessions.
Perhaps, that's already the intent - to make this an open process.


The person that fought the hardest for transparency on council is now the Mayor, and has no say.

.


Jim O'Bryan
Lakewood Resident

"The very act of observing disturbs the system."
Werner Heisenberg

"If anything I've said seems useful to you, I'm glad.
If not, don't worry. Just forget about it."
His Holiness The Dalai Lama
Bridget Conant
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Re: Council Should Be Transparent

Postby Bridget Conant » Thu Feb 06, 2020 8:59 am

The person that fought the hardest for transparency on council is now the Mayor, and has no say.


People need to realize WE are the government and WE are the power. Council depends on our votes.

Let them know we DEMAND transparency and a fair process.

They don’t comply, VOTE THEM OUT.

We all voted Meghan George in to stop the secret executive sessions and backroom dealings. Council will ignore that message at their own peril.


pj bennett
Posts: 118
Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2018 3:56 pm

Re: Council Should Be Transparent

Postby pj bennett » Thu Feb 06, 2020 12:45 pm

There's another matter, that's been rubbing me.

During the Jan 27th COW meeting, two council members each made a couple of comments (in regards to the interviews and the call for an Executive Session), that repeatedly kept running through my head.

So, I decided to watch the video (located on the city's website), to see if I had gotten the nuances correct.

Hmmm. I couldn't find any of the remarks. Not one of them.

I have to assume, that the video has been edited.
Those comments, that had stuck with me, must have been deleted.

Do any of you know if this is common practice? For a public meeting that is being recorded, to be edited?

In the name of transparency, why delete anything?


Dan OMalley
Posts: 117
Joined: Wed Jun 03, 2015 4:33 pm

Re: Council Should Be Transparent

Postby Dan OMalley » Thu Feb 06, 2020 2:22 pm

pj bennett wrote:There's another matter, that's been rubbing me.

During the Jan 27th COW meeting, two council members each made a couple of comments (in regards to the interviews and the call for an Executive Session), that repeatedly kept running through my head.

So, I decided to watch the video (located on the city's website), to see if I had gotten the nuances correct.

Hmmm. I couldn't find any of the remarks. Not one of them.

I have to assume, that the video has been edited.
Those comments, that had stuck with me, must have been deleted.

Do any of you know if this is common practice? For a public meeting that is being recorded, to be edited?

In the name of transparency, why delete anything?


PJ,

I suspect the comments you're referring to begin around the 1:43:40 mark: http://onelakewood.granicus.com/player/ ... ?view_id=2

If not, let me know who you believe said them and more detail on the topic and I'll help you find the time mark in the recording.

Council meeting videos are not edited or deleted, for any reason, ever.


Dan O'Malley
pj bennett
Posts: 118
Joined: Fri Mar 09, 2018 3:56 pm

Re: Council Should Be Transparent

Postby pj bennett » Thu Feb 06, 2020 3:08 pm

Thank you, Dan.
I simply found it odd, that some reactions and comments that I wanted to review, seemed to have vanished.

For starters.... the meeting had barely begun, when Council person Tom Bullock proposed that a Executive Session be called. He was the first person to bring up that motion. Because, it brought up memories of the recent past, it lodged into my mind.

His reason being, I'll paraphrase "I know a lot of these people (the list of applicants) personally. I am not comfortable in saying - that I prefer this person over someone else. I don't want to cause any hard feelings."

With that, you sighed and leaned back into your chair.

I am not referring to the segment of the meeting, when Tom got to talking about person A and person B, etc. That occurred later and is in the recording.


Dan Alaimo
Posts: 1744
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 8:49 am

Re: Council Should Be Transparent

Postby Dan Alaimo » Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:47 am

Per Dan O'Malley's post tonight on another online forum, it seems to me that a lot is happening quickly in executive session with an appointment expected at the Feb. 18 meeting.


"In campaigns it's all about what you say...
"In government it's all about what you do...
"And the great ones know the difference."
Former NYS Governor Mario Cuomo (1932-2015)

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