Gov't

Council Approves Bigger Government

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By Dave Freneaux

On Tuesday night, in a record four hour meeting of Central’s City Council, Council Members LoBue, Washington and Messina, voted “no” on an amendment which would have divided Central into five Districts, a concept they each campaigned on last year.  Council Member DeJohn, who offered the compromise, and Council Member Moak, both voted in favor of the five District amendment .

In another attempt to reach a compromise Council Members DeJohn and Moak supported an amendment to create five Divisions, in which each area of the city is represented by one Council Member, all of whom are elected At-Large.  Council Members LoBue, Messina and Washington voted down this amendment as well.

In a final attempt to resolve the issue and unify the Council, Council Member Moak offered an amendment which would allow the citizens of Central to go to the polls and decide for themselves whether to increase the size of Central’s City Council and what type of representation the people want.  Council Member DeJohn supported the amendment, but Council Members Messina, LoBue and Washington voted against allowing the people to decide.  Mr. Washington explained that “This is not a big decision” and he felt the Council could decide this matter for the people.  Mr. Moak felt quite differently, stating “You are fundamentally changing the form of government for the City of Central.”

    In each of the first three Districts committee meetings Council Member Messina explained why he felt it was important to increase the size of the Council by adding two seats elected At-Large. Messina explained, “…right now all five Council Members live in School Board District #1.   Here is the only thing that bothers me about the districts, I think that it would be harmful and a loss to the City of Central, brainpower wise, effort wise, if of the five Councilmen that are in District 1 when we go to 2014 when the next election is, that automatically four of them could not, would not be elected”… "I am going to be in favor of the five districts and the two at large.  That way it would give those folks an opportunity to run at large.”

    The ordinance changing the City Council structure to Five Districts plus two At-Large was approved by a 3-2 vote.  In favor were LoBue, Washington and Messina, opposed were Moak and DeJohn.  The ordinance is now on the Mayor’s desk awaiting his signature or veto.

    Public comment on the ordinance was overwhelmingly against increasing the size of Central’s City Council.  Thirty two persons spoke and only eight were in favor of the ordinance.  So that the entire community can be fully informed about this extremely important meeting, the entire four hours of video can be seen on CentralSpeaks.com by clicking on the CentralSpeaksTV icon at the top of any screen.  Due to the length of the meeting, it is presented in three parts.

44 Comments

  1. Maria L

    September 30, 2011 at 1:59 pm

    Shameful action by three council members. I hope this can be overturned. Looks like they are only looking out for themselves in the next election.

  2. Ray

    September 30, 2011 at 4:44 pm

    This is not a big deal. The Mayor already stated that if the ordinance didn’t pass by at least a 4-1 vote he would veto. The vote couldn’t have been put on the next ballot because the legislature has to approve. So that is really a non-issue. Since the ordinance presented had nothing to do with just 5 districts, 5 divisions, or 5 at-large, the council majority decided against voting on the amendments and evidently wanted to vote on an uncompromised ordinance. Once the Mayor stamps his veto, the council can offer differing ordinances for a 5 member council or choose to petition the legislature to bring it to a vote of the people. If they can’t agree on anything, it will remain the same, which is just the way I like it.

  3. Donna Dufour

    September 30, 2011 at 6:45 pm

    Don’t forget this was the recommendation of seven member committee. Maybe you should find out who they were and blame them also.The three councilmen only passed their recommendation on to the rest of the council and Mayor.

  4. Kim Fralick

    September 30, 2011 at 8:26 pm

    Is this truly bigger government or just broader representation? Now that whole veto thing… Now that is “big” government! Maybe border line dictatorship?? Certainly not pure democracy.

  5. Maria L

    September 30, 2011 at 9:05 pm

    Not sure how the veto thing works here, but I know that the governor has the power to veto laws that the legislature passes every year. He vetoes lots of laws every year. Just reading that eight people were in support of the ordinance and 24 were against it, and three council members vote to pass it. That doesn’t sound like pure democracy either. Also previously reading that the committee recommendation was only 4 out of 7 members for this ordinance, so it wasn’t unanimous. What concerns me most is the reason that Messina gave for voting for it…so that at least three members could get re-elected next term. That’s just not right. I think more time should be put into this. Maybe the city should do some surveys or something and send to everyone in the city or do some phone polling like I’ve been getting for all these elections going on.

  6. Ray

    September 30, 2011 at 10:25 pm

    I don’t think anyone is to blame. Everyone has their own opinion, and is entitled to such. Mr Messina and the committee started this process in February and held six meetings, all of which are posted on this site. They did research and talked with people they knew and gave their recommendations. I appreciate the time and effort they committed. It was reported that over 100 people were in attendance. Of these, 32 expressed their choice. 24 against expansion, 8 in favor. That means 68 people didn’t comment about their preference. They were the majority.

  7. "Let my people vote"

    September 30, 2011 at 11:29 pm

    Those favoring the 5+2 council on numerous occassions referrenced our US govt as an example of supporting 5+2. They referred to the two as acting like senators and other occasssions referrenced how they would look out for the greater good of the city. Now I ask you, when was the last time any senator in Washington DC did not look out for anything other than the interest of his own state, i.e. district.
    They want to use referrences to the national government when it fits their view but refuse to acknowledge the basic premise set out from the beginning, that when it comes to forming any new style of how we govern ourselves, it must go to a vote of the people. When we won our independence each person in each state got to vote for the Articles of Confederation. When that form of government proved to be unworkable, again each and every person got the right to vote up or down on our current Constitution. Then about 100 years ago, we decided to amend our constitution to change how we elect Senators and again every citizen got the right to vote. How can I say it more clearly, when it comes to fundamentally changing how we are going to govern ourselves, WE HAVE TO ALLOW THE CITIZENS THE RIGHT OF SELF DETERMINATION. THAT IS OUR RIGHT AND THE AMERICAN WAY. I can support any decision that is made by the citizens of our city, not just by three councilmen that refuse to recoginize my basic right.

  8. Mike Mannino

    October 1, 2011 at 8:54 am

    Let My People Go,

    Mr Freneuax failed to mention that under the law, we cannot vote on this without the legislature approving first, quite a lenghty process and a fact that I brought out several times.

    • dave

      October 1, 2011 at 10:57 am

      Mike,
      It is indeed a clever tactic to say “Mr. Freneaux failed to mention”, as if it were an attempt to hide something. But now that you ask, enabling legislation for this type of action is common, costs nothing, and would result in giving the voters of Central the ability to decide an issue that our City Council seems unable to come to consensus on. It can be added to any election already scheduled over the next two years at a relatively small cost. Committing (I have been told) $3,000 or $4000 to fund an item on a ballot is a DEAL compared to a decision to spend $32,000 a year forever. I believe that if the Council can’t come to consensus on this issue, they owe it to the voters to let US decide.
      Dave

  9. Keith Holmes

    October 1, 2011 at 10:00 am

    Mike,
    You are correct that we cannot have a vote that is binding on the city council without first going through the legislature but that does not prevent the Council from having a nonbinding election inorder to get the input from the citizens of Central. Surely you would not be against letting the people voice their opinion about how we are to govern ourselves.

    Besides there is also plenty of time, 2 1/2 years to be exact, before this can be implemented. There is plenty of time to table this discussion, go through the legislative process to permit a binding vote of the people. How can anyone be against letting the people decide on the style of our government in Central? Mike you are influential with most of those who were in the 5+2 camp. I am asking you to come out here, take a position and standby it. I personally don’t care what type of government we choose, divisions, districts, at large, five, seven, or combinations, as long as if we are going to change it must go to the citizens of central for approval. Mike, come out and take a definitive position. Support letting the people speak.

  10. Mike Mannino

    October 1, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    Dave this is one subject I have been clear on and voiced my opinion on over and over. I am in favor of districts. 5 is fine, 7 is better if it doesnt cost us more money. My main concern is that all areas have a person that is familiar with their issues and is a go to person for that area. The 2 at large makes sense from an overall city perspective but only if its cost neutral.

    Keith I hope I have been clear on my position on this, and some are not happy with my stance, even those that normally agree with me. But I have never changed my position from the first vote when this committee was first established. Mr. McCully made a good case for the 2 at large and Mr Saucier had a great idea of how to keep it cost neutral. Im also fine with letting the people vote if it doesnt cost anything but worry about a precedent of voting on every issue that comes up, mainly from the cost concern. I am all about doing what the voters want, but to vote on every issue would tend to create a lot of problems I would think. I would hope we could get this behind us as I never thought it would generate this much discussion and we need to address other issues. Im

  11. Another Central resident

    October 1, 2011 at 9:55 pm

    I personally like the idea of having districts with two additional at large. Not a problem.

  12. Keith Holmes

    October 1, 2011 at 10:50 pm

    Mike, I am by no way advocating that the citizens for on every issue and no one at the council meeting the other night came even close to doing so either. This represents and Aaron Moak stated, “a fundamentally different form of government” and he is right. There is only one reason anyone would be opposed to letting the people vote and that is because they do not feel the vote would go their way. If that is the case, even more the reason it should go to a vote.

    The cost would be minimal and there is plenty of time. Getting a bill through the next legislative session would be easy and cost nothing. Mrs Morris even gave an example where a city in Louisiana got a bill passed that would allow the citizens to vote on districts verses divisions. The bill could be passed in the spring and go on the fall state wide elections in 2012. It would cost next to nothing. So why then don’t you come straight out and say it should be voted on. The precedent is there both in Washington DC and in Louisiana. In my opinion, any time you are fundamentally changing the form of government the people should decide.

  13. Jessie

    October 2, 2011 at 9:09 am

    I was at the meeting the other night and really was ashamed of how our city goverment was handling this. Like one of the last men to speak said “You sounded like a bunch of kids that has had their feelings hurt”. I think Mr. Messina did what he was ask to do as far as the meetings. Our Mayor said that if it did not pass by at least four to one he would veto it (per this newspaper). Thats not good Mayor because that just means your not standing up for what you ask Mr Messina to find out for you. I also do not believe the citizens of Central did their part in going to these meetings. From what I heard over and over was there was an average of 30 to 50 people came to the last three meetings and only 15 to 20 the first 3 meetings. I only made one but there were about 30-35 at it. Now I would like to know where all these “YOUNG” people came from all of a sudden. Most of them I have never seen at a council meeting or at the meeting I went to(kind of like when they all showed up for the meeting on the townhomes with Jeff). I see everyone is saying “Put it to a Vote”. I agree 100%. But why was this not suggested along time ago before this spent alot of our councils time on something that was doomed from the start.

  14. Mike Mannino

    October 2, 2011 at 1:28 pm

    Keith I know what was said in all these meetings and I dont believe for a second what has someone has twisted Mr Messinas words to mean is what he meant.

    Be that as it may, I also know that no one on that committee is trying to avoid voting for the reason that it wouldnt go their way. I heard every word every person voiced, laid it out in a very understandable power point with pros and cons, and it was not clear to me there was any one option that just overwelmed the other between the 5 or the 5 plus 2, except the cost. If it has a strong benefit, as Mr McCully stated, that way tip it slightly towards the 7. But their is the cost piece and thats why I voted for 5.

    I have a great respect for you as you are very thoughtful in your analysis of anything I have seen you speak on. So given that, I would tend to agree that if the cost to benefit ratio is there for voting on this, I dont see a problem with it. But Im betting it will be a fairly even split as is most things out here. So if it came out 50.8 to 49.2 for 7, would that stop the debate ? I really doubt it. The one curious thing to me is that the same people that are complaining about the cost are the same ones who have no problem wasting a lot more money on Economic development that has yet to bring a single business or job to Central. So the consistency or should I say inconsistency of the position on wasteful spending by some is troubling to me as I dont see them applying that argument to things they support.

    I tend to agree with you on this issue though. You have a well thought out reason and I always enjoy hearing you speak because you do think things through. Bottom line, you asked for my position and I have to agree with you in this case. But lets say this is a precedent and the same logic should apply anytime we are talking about spending money which I am perfectly OK with as long as we are consistent.

    • dave

      October 2, 2011 at 1:51 pm

      Mike,

      I am calling you out on this. You say “I don’t believe for a second what has someone has twisted Mr Messinas words to mean is what he meant.”

      How much more can I do for you than record, on video, 100% of EVERY Districts Committee meeting and put them ALL on the Internet so that ANYONE can view them and hear Mr. Messina’s words IN CONTEXT?

      If you are unable to believe that the words were spoken or that they mean what they say, you are either unwilling to take the time to watch the videos, lest the facts get in the way of what you want to believe, or that you are unwilling to see the evidence because you don’t like the truth if this matter.

      Unbelievable statement from you Mike.

      Dave

  15. Mike Mannino

    October 2, 2011 at 8:11 pm

    Dave I was there in the room, heard every word, and I know what was said and what the message was. It was that Mr Messina was concerned about the potential to lose good people that were currently in office due to lines being drawn. You seem to only think the worst of the people who dont agree with you, I never see you call out those that do. Not once ! Ive come to expect no less though as have many other people. Be aware, I say this as someone that supported 5 districts so Im not trying to sway people to 5 plus 2.

    • dave

      October 2, 2011 at 8:23 pm

      Mike,
      Words mean things. Read the words or watch the video. Either way, it was clearly stated that it was about the five sitting Council Members, evdinced by the reference to them all living in School Board District 1, and it was clearly about the next election, evidenced by Mr. Messina specifically referencing that this would happen in the 2014 election. End of story.
      Now, I will gladly debate the issue of not enough people to run. If anyone thinks that out of the 3,600 voters in each of five districts there is not at least one willing candidate whose credentials, intelligence and willingness to serve are not at least the equal of our current Council Members, they are deceiving themselves. However, for the sake of argument, Divisions solves the issue completely, since they all run at large.
      Lastly, had the committee limited itself to its charge, to provide research, and had three of the Council Members not insisted that a 4-3 vote of seven unelected members of this City was PROOF of the “will of the people” and insisted on voting for 5 plus 2 rather than letting the people decide, we would not be having this discussion. I do not begrudge Mr. Messina the position that 5 plus 2 makes it possible for more of the sitting Council to be re-elected, but I do say that is grounds to let the people decide. And no Mike, I am not thinking the worst of anyone, just taking them at their word.
      Dave

    • dave

      October 2, 2011 at 9:48 pm

      Mike,

      In reference to your earlier comment “Dave I was there in the room, heard every word, and I know what was said and what the message was.”, you were, I believe, and correct me if I am wrong, absent from the first Disctricts meeting when Mr. Messina first explained his concern over good people not being able to be elected, which he then restated in the second meeting, again in the third meeting, and again in a City Council meeting.

      Dave

  16. Nathan

    October 2, 2011 at 8:26 pm

    I think we should get rid of the council and let the community vote on every issue. Since we were the first community in Louisiana to privatize its public services why can’t we be the first on this. The mayor can make a decision on what forms of legislation need to be passed and we can vote. I have no problem dropping by Central High every weekend casting my vote on every issue in this community. I know this may sound completely stupid to most but at least you know your vote had and influence on any outcome.

    Mike are you just randomly putting up signs or do you have legitimate supporters?
    Don’t you know to succeed in politics you have to walk the fence line on issues. You need to come up with something better besides public records request and Exxon Middle Mgmt if you want to win. Stop bleeding your heart out to ole Woodrow you will find yourself with the same success rate.

  17. Mike Mannino

    October 2, 2011 at 8:59 pm

    Dave,
    Im all about consistency, which is why I voted for 5 districts to stay inline on my stance of smaller government. So I have a couple of questions:

    1) Why is it that the same group that had no problem wasting a couple of hundred thousand dollars on Economic Development, which has resulted in not a dime of return, is so adamant about what this will cost ? The money spent on that folly would have paid for this for an entire term and more, of 2 extra councilmen.

    2) I was not able to attend this meeting but I was told that there were a bunch of people who had never attended a council meeting, that got up and spoke against the 5 plus 2, and left shortly after. I have been told there was something that happened that encouraged them to come that I wont repeat because it is something I dont have the proof to back up yet. Have you heard anything about this ?

    • dave

      October 2, 2011 at 9:41 pm

      Mike,

      The quick answer is, I believe it is Council Member LoBue’s right to send out his email blast before each Council meeting stating his position and encouraging people to come out in support of it.

      I don’t know of any group that is in favor of “wasting a couple of hundred thousand dollars on Economic Development”. Last time I checked, it was the City Council that funded the budget for Economic Development, so I guess the “group” you are talking about is the City Council? So, no, I guess it is not the same group, because only two of the five Council Members seemed deterred by the additional burden on the taxpayers of funding two extra Council Seats. By the way, if it is your stance that Central does not need to invest in Economic Development, then by all means let that be a part of your election platform.

      And no, from what I could see most everyone stayed the entire meeting, and those that left probably had to work and left before the end of the four-hour-plus Councill meeting. Now that you mention it, there were quite a few young people there. If issues like this are what it takes to get the younger people in Central involved and interested enough to show up and ask our generation not to increase the size of a government that THEY will have to sustain, then I guess that sends a message too.

      I personally believe that anyone who is concerned about an issue before our Council should take the time to come and expresss their opinions. I believe that is why we have public comment in our meetings. If this is the thing that happened that you don’t have the proof of, then I will just go ahead and give you the proof. I ALWAYS encourage people to show up and express their opinions, and I tell them that if they don’t speak up or at least tell a Council Member how they feel, they should probably not complain about the outcome. What I don’t do, is to tell them what to say. So yes, between Council Member LoBue’s email blast, which often seeks to rally support for a position he favors, and people like me (and hopefully others) encouraging people to take part in our democratic process, there were probably people speaking on this EXTREMELY important fundamental change in the type of governance in place in Central, who might not normally attend a Council meeting. Mike, do you see anything wrong with that?
      Dave

  18. Ray

    October 2, 2011 at 10:00 pm

    Mike concerning #2, I was at the meeting. In fact it was the first meeting of the council I ever attended. I chose not to speak, so as not to be redundant and out of respect to the committee members. I had watched the video’s of all six meeting as they were posted but never attended are contacted anyone about my feelings. Having said that those that spoke seem to have all been of voting age in my opinion. They also have a right to attend or not attend meetings. I remember the first school board meeting I ever attended, (during the bidding process for the new schools) several people asked “What are you doing here” or “What are you here for” . What I wanted to say is “Why are you here” and I’m a citizen of this city and I chose to be here and its none of your damn business. So please be careful when commenting about those that attend meetings.

  19. Mike Mannino

    October 2, 2011 at 10:53 pm

    Ray when I get the proof, you will understand what why I ask. Of course I would love EVERY citizen to attend these meetings. But not if they are lured there by suspicious means and I will leave it at that for now.

    Dave, Lets be honest here. I dont see the same protest about spending the same amount of money on more expensive, wasteful issues, economic development in particular. Especially curious that the same group, OUTSIDE the council, are the ones pushing for it and I have yet to see a dime come to the city that wouldnt come anyway. And yes, I am totally opposed to spending money to draw in business when that is a function of free enterprise. Its a top down model when the bottom up works better and benefits the State, or City , more. Spend the money on infrastructure, education and the things that business owners look for. No amount of money spent on enticing companies with tax breaks or grants can replace a solid workforce, good schools, and good infrastructure as far as what a company is looking for. If they come, they will fail without that foundation. And in the process, you run out the small business owner because you give the bigger companies an unfair advantage.

    • dave

      October 3, 2011 at 7:06 am

      Mike,
      OK, I get it, you are against any active effort to stimulate economic development. That is your right. But, don’t use that as a diversion or justification to go against your own “smaller government” stance and support an increase in the size of our City Council.
      Take a stance: are you in favor of increasing the size of Central’s City Council and using an additional $25,000 to $32,000 per year of our tax dollars to do so?
      Dave

  20. Mike Mannino

    October 3, 2011 at 10:01 am

    Im against using any money that does not have a benefit to the City. Economic Development at this stage of the game is a waste of a lot of taxpayer money. I have never wavered from my stance on districts and repeated it on here. So the people who say one is OK but the other is not, are a bit hypocritical at best. I was actually OK with the 5 plus 2 but was not comfortable with the cost. Same applies in spades for Economic Development. That money would have a tangible benefit if it were instead spent on further refinement of the Master Plan which would give business a better idea of what to expect in the way of zoning and infrastructure.

    • dave

      October 3, 2011 at 12:19 pm

      Mike,
      So anyone who disagrees with you on where our tax dollars should be spent is a hypocrite?
      Dave

  21. Another Central resident

    October 3, 2011 at 11:18 am

    After looking up the current council home addresses, it is more glaring that Districts are necessary. Now the question comes is should it be 4+1 or 5+2. With the landmass of Central I think 5+2 is more appropriate to make sure there is good representation of each area. If I lived in the northen most part of Central, I would be upset that majority of the current council seem to live in a 2-4 miles radius of each other while two of them live like 3 doors down from each other.

    The question becomes when someone announces they are running for council seat can they only run under districts vs. at large. I hope this is true.

    • dave

      October 3, 2011 at 11:59 am

      ACR,

      If the city needs seven Council Members, which I suggest we do not, why not seven Districts?

      Dave

  22. Another Central resident

    October 3, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    Well make 6 districts and 1 floater. I still like the 5+2. That way someone who can have an open opinion on all the disctricts and not just their own. I believe Port Allen does 4+1 and they don’t have near the population Central does or land area to cover.

    • dave

      October 3, 2011 at 1:10 pm

      ACR,
      Why not five Divisions? That way EVERY Council Member is responsible to represent the needs of a single District, but is answerable to the entire city at election time.
      Dave

  23. Mike Mannino

    October 3, 2011 at 1:43 pm

    No the hypocritical part is to be perfectly fine with wasting in other areas and be so adamant about what this supposedly wastes. At least Im consistent on the spending issue.

    • dave

      October 3, 2011 at 3:59 pm

      Mike,
      So, in your opinion, Economic Development efforts in Central are a waste, and funding two additional Council Seats is also a waste. Is that correct?
      Dave

  24. Another Central resident

    October 3, 2011 at 2:25 pm

    Why not 7. Why isn’t there a push to reduce the number of school board members from 7 to 5. Smaller gov, smaller gov. We can do this all day. You like 5 and I like 7. I want at least 1 or 2 at large councilman. That is just my opinion so the council actually voted in the same direction as I favored. That is why I voted for the 3 who voted yes and did not vote for the two who voted no. The two no votes do not have the same vision as I do for Central.

  25. Keith Holmes

    October 3, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    ACR,

    Just a point of clarification. State law requires you to have a minimal of seven school board members and by districts. That is why when we formed, Gov Blanco appointed seven members. The Larson act which governs City councils mandates a minimal of five.

    As I have stated in several posts, I think this decision to change our local government should be sent to the people to vote. I personally can accept anything that is supported by the majority of our citizens. I trust you would agree. If not, then you must be afraid of the outcome of a vote that it would not support your view for Central. I respect your opinion and only ask that everyone respect the opinions of others. The only way to know the majority opinion is a vote.

  26. Wade Evans

    October 3, 2011 at 6:18 pm

    Goooooooooood Lawd. Super Mike is at it again. How can you save us all?
    Good Luck with your campaign as more people will see your greatness than just us here in Central. I am glad i dug a little deeper on the White issue because you had me convinced that Bodi was a self serving crook. Spin it how you will and rock on

  27. Another Central resident

    October 3, 2011 at 9:02 pm

    Keith,

    Didn’t City Attorney say it can’t go to the vote of the people.

    I am not afraid of the outcome as shown in the last couple elections that whatever/whomever the current administration has supported has lost.

    • dave

      October 3, 2011 at 9:06 pm

      A simple vote of the people would be non-binding. However, with enabling legislation at state level it can be put on a state level ballot and it would be binding.

  28. Keith Holmes

    October 3, 2011 at 9:09 pm

    It can’t go to a vote of the people without passing legislation. She gave an example where a city in Louisiana did just that. They got a bill passed that allowed the citizens to decide. It is 2 1/2 years before the election for city council. We can get a bill easily passed in next springs session and then have it go on the state wide elections in the fall of 2012. Essentially no cost to the city of Central and we get to let the citizens of Central decide on what type of government we want. How can anyone disagree with that? So, where do you come down, letting the council decide or letting the citizens decide on how we shall govern ourselves for the next 100 years? I vote for the people.

  29. Mike Mannino

    October 4, 2011 at 12:16 am

    Fine by me Keith but like I said, I want to see the same scrutiny for every proposal that costs money above and beyond mandated spending. You have come to a conclusion, on a sound, well thought out basis that I think we should apply for extra spending from now on.

    Wade some of you are beyond help. But Ill still do my best for you.

  30. Keith Holmes

    October 4, 2011 at 7:47 am

    Mike,

    I am not implying by any means that all decisions to be made by the council deserve the same actions as trying to change our form of government. Mike we both share many values. I refer to myself as an absolute strict constitutional constructionist and from hearing you I am quite confident you know what that means. You will never meet a more fisically/socially/morally or any way you want to view it conservative. Unfortunately, most of those in Washington DC wouldn’t know a conservative if one hit them in the face. That said, I do not advocate that all matters receive the same scrunity. There are definitely some that deserve more attention than others. I would agree that when it comes to discretionary spending, there should be considerable oversight. Those decisions are to made by our elected officials with public input. If we don’t agree, we can remove them from office every four years.

  31. Jason Ellis

    October 4, 2011 at 1:28 pm

    Fellow citizens of the great City of Central,
    As it is true there are many opinions on both sides of this matter. Right or wrong. They are not the core issue. I think that disregarding the voice of the people by not allowing a vote in this situation is the real travesty. This is not an issue of the budget that the council is charged to oversee. This is an issue of our fundamental form of government. Just like when the citizens voted to incorporate this city or like as “Let my people vote” states above when the people of the United States voted on changing how our Senators are elected. I believe in the right to vote. As a veteran I believe that I and the other thousands of us that live and dwell in communities throughout the United States have earned the right to vote on any matter that the public deems necessary. I ask the Central City Council to reconsider their vote to disallow me my fundamental right. If it becomes necessary I will lead a petition for this right to be granted. I end with a quote by Thomas Jefferson that all of us should recall. “My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government.”-Thomas Jefferson

  32. Denise

    October 5, 2011 at 11:13 am

    VERY well presented, Jason!!

  33. Donna Dufour

    October 6, 2011 at 7:32 am

    Wade, remember your words “Wade Evans will never vote for Mike Mannino”, that was way before he brought up the BREC issues. You never intended to vote for Mike so don’t come on here acting like you changed your mind with your statement “I am glad i dug a little deeper on the White issue”.

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