Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The first 23 or so minutes of the City Commission work session last night...

This is the first part of the meeting.  For most of us present, we experienced many RPMs.  What are RPMs?  Revelations per minute.  Here we find out that there was no management team in place during most of the project, that "oil finished bronze hardware" should stand up to oceanfront conditions but hasn't, that a "substantially complete" letter was issued by the architect in May indicating that the project - at least according to the contractor and architect - was then handed over to the city.  At that point, it was the city's job to maintain the building?  Given the city's record on building maintenance, I question whether or not we are up to the task even if we had assigned staff (there was none in this last budget) to do whatever maintenance is required for this building that is less than six months old.  Whether or not we are getting a new wood floor in the ballroom seems to be based upon how much water content is "normal" in a wood floor versus how much they can dry out the one that is there.  They are putting in replacement hardware and adding astragals to the doors - on the inside in addition to the ones outside - to prevent wind driven rain from entering the building.

I will put up the second video - somewhat shorter than this one.  The card in my camera allows about 40 or so minutes of video and longer ones take a while to upload to YouTube.  Check out the 19 minute mark for some particularly revealing information in this first video.  The second one begins during the discussion of what "substantially complete" means.

I still believe that it is unconscionable that our two representatives that a) were the most ardent advocates for this project, b) told people during the process that if they asked questions about the process or the project that they were somehow "against the project", c) were elected on the premise on "saving the building" d) used this project to campaign for office and e) reassured us all along that everything was o.k. and it will be a "shining achievement" when all is said and done weren't there to participate in the discussion.  They weren't there to stand up for the constituent's interest when the heat got hot.  That is why we elect people - to be responsible for successes and failures - to take ownership when things go wrong.  Then to have the two of them both - serendipitously - not show up was just too much to take.

Now, as for excuses why they couldn't attend, I say this.  Let's say that an elected official gets word minutes before a meeting that something terrible has happened to someone they know or are related to.  That person should immediately inform the City Manager, in this case, of the situation and ask that it be announced at the beginning of the meeting.  If it was that serious, we should have all had a moment of silence before or after the Pledge of Allegiance.  There might be some grumbling in the audience, but at least then we would have an excuse for their absence that had been made in a public way.  Not through some back-channel, rumor mill the day after the meeting.  As for Commissioner Mulvehill, maybe this officially sealed her lame-duck status and she couldn't bear witness to the bitter fruits of her labor.  I just know that those in attendance felt like their elected representatives shirked their duty last night by not being there - having no idea what could be more important than bringing a major issue the city has dealt with for 30 + years to a successful conclusion.