Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Talking Like a Pirate in Greenland

The Greenland City Council went into executive session to discuss the resignation of the mayor, over objections from the media that such a closed meeting violated the state Freedom of Information Act, since the mayor had not offered any such resignation and the Council had no power to fire him. Mayor John Gray also objected and demanded that any discussions be held in public. He walked out with the press and members of the public in the audience.

Emerging from the secret meeting, the council presented the mayor with a unanimous petition asking for the mayor's resignation. "You don't listen and carry out the wishes of the council
. You just do what you want to do," said Alderman Lisa Thornton. "You don’t communicate. You don’t understand enough to carry out the directions of the council. You have no leadership skills because you don’t have people skills or communication skills."

"I'm willing to bend over backward to try and communicate with you," Mayor Gray replied, but "I will not resign." He blamed the action on the "good ole boy system" of small town politics and the shared frustration over a lawsuit by developers challenging the city's moratorium on new construction and developments within the city limits. He minced no words in laying the blame on the City Council for bad decisions and said he was staying to protect the people of Greenland.

Sensing a stalemate,
Alderman Bill Groom said, "I think we've had some serious clearing of the air. I don't think he's going to resign. We're just going to have to live with him. Let's move to the next item on the agenda."

Mayor Gray once said an honest mayor who tried to do the right thing would be a one-term mayor. He might be right about that. He doesn't plan to run again in 2010.

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