Tuesday, June 17, 2008

VonVillas Annnounces for Middletown Council Seat

I'll post some of the highlights of her speech. The room was full & by the middle of her speech, she had the crowd's rapt attention. Barbara is the chair of the Charter Commission & was a former School Committee Chair.

She decried the use of police officers at meetings & thought that there are other means to ensure safety. "This council continues to behave in a way that is embarrassing to the town of Middletown."

She continued with this theme:
Some on this council, however, react to differences of opinion childishly by bullying, which sets a tone for interaction among council members as well as for the public. If the conduct of the public is inappropriate, it is the fault of this council.

I was at a meeting one month ago when the council engaged in a dialogue on a contentious issue. The discussion about a motion was ended when one councilor had a temper tantrum, accused others of casting blame on him for wrongdoing, and made a motion that everyone in attendance and those who read the papers recognized was a sham.

At times during the controversy, there was applause for one speaker or another, a
traditional reflection of support. However, there were also catcalls, insults, and gutter language that was shocking at a public meeting. I ask you - how can one expect the audience to behave appropriately when the council sets the tone by modeling offensive behavior?
Barbara then commented on the lack of a behavior policy & contentiousness surrounding board appointments (again- no policy). She advocated for non-partisan elections & the placing of ALL the charter commission's recommendations for ballot inclusion.

She then announced her candidacy for office- in part, I think, to offset any rumors.

Tonight at 6 at Oliphant School there will be a discussion by the Council on the Charter recommendations.

I believe that she's on-the-money reading much of townwide discontent. Feel free to comment. It took a lot of courage to stand in front of the Council & criticize some of them regarding their behavior. Did it hit home?
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