Letter: City administration, council under attack

From: Frank Jerome


There is a need to respond to the omission and half truths about the Columbus City Council meeting on April 18.

As usual, most of the four or five avid supporters of our former mayor came to the meeting. They usually wish to speak about one or more issues. They seem to particularly dislike giving their addresses and object to this long-standing rule. Such rules are determined solely by the presiding member of the meeting, usually the mayor. There is no rule that specifies that comments need to be part of the meeting.

The first speaker again objected to having to give his address and was about to be passed over when he said his address was 301 W. Washington St. The mayor quickly pointed out that Washington Street runs north and south. At this point, he should have been asked to leave the meeting for giving false information and could have been banned for the rest of the year.

The meeting is conducted before nine elected officials and the city attorney. I doubt if the voters of Columbus believe that they should have to be subjected to speakers who lie to them. Nothing after the lie should be considered. A lawyers axiom is: False in one, false in all.

When he was allowed to continue his rant about giving his address, I objected with a point of order. It was not heard. As he continued, I objected again with similar result. I then asked for a vote of the council on vacating the rule on giving addresses and false reporting. I noted that this was a City Council meeting and the council should have a say in this.

Again, I did not prevail with the chairman. The city attorney did not render an opinion but was mute. Because the speaker was allowed to proceed, I chose to leave rather than listening to someone who lied to the council. The question was not that I left but why did not the rest of the council leave, too. At least take a recess.

This administration and the council have been subjected to these constant attacks since it was sworn in. The questions asked do not seem to be more than a way to attack the results of the election and the way the city is being run. If you doubt that, you should take a look at the websites of this group of people and see what they post. It is not issue-oriented but one personal attack after another against both elected officials and even city employees.

Columbus has hundreds of groups full of volunteers trying to make the city a better place. Do any of these advocates of the former mayor join in volunteering? No, it is just one attack after another, and time does not seem to lessen their vitriol.