Friday, December 16, 2011

December 16, 2011 Councilmember Claude Jinks Publicly States that Council Has "Great Hopes" of Transferring City Sewer To Morristown Utilities Commission

The City Finance Committee met two days ago.  In the short video above, Councilmember Claude Jinks asks City Administrator Tony Cox if Cox still plans to add a new City Hall position with the hiring of a new "public works" director. Tony says he's still working on selecting someone for that position. 

At about the 20 second mark, Claude says that he was wondering whether the position would still be needed since City Council has "great hopes" to transfer the City sewer to the Morristown Utility Commission (MUC) next year. 

Councilmember Kay Senter makes no comment. She adjourns the meeting and leaves.

What is Claude talking about? When and where did councilmembers discuss this transfer of the city sewer to MUC?

Apparently, the sewer transfer is part of the LeBel Five's agenda for MUC, but they have kept the public focus, instead, on their crusade to keep George McGuffin on the MUC Board. 

Publicly, the LeBel Five have voted against NINE different people recommended by MUC and nominated for appointment to the MUC Board by Mayor Thomas.

Publicly, the LeBel Five have discussed and voted to ask Rep. Don Miller and Sen. Steve Southerland to get the state legislature to authorize the LeBel FIVE to change the appointment process in the MUC Private Act--a move by FIVE people to circumvent and cancel out the votes of the 3,202 people (72% of the voters) who put the current appointment process in place in a 2001 Referendum. 

What the LeBel Five have not done publicly is discuss their plan to transfer control of the sewer to MUC and MUC Chairman George McGuffin.

While the public discussion about the MUC Private Act has been on changing the MUC appointment process to make sure that George McGuffin stays on the Board, the LeBel Five apparently have had private discussions about transferring the sewer to MUC and put that change in the legislation that they asked Rep. Miller and Sen. Southerland to carry for them. 

Miller and Southerland have agreed to carry the LeBel Five's legislation. Since the LeBel Five included the sewer transfer with the change to the appointment process, Miller and Southerland will be assisting the LeBel Five in making both changes without a referendum

The sewer transfer is a major change to the City's longtime policy and practice. Why didn't the LeBel Five discuss this publicly when voting on MUC Private Act changes at the two council meetings in November?  Why didn't the paper mention that the sewer transfer was part of the LeBel Five's changes to the MUC Private Act?
It is extremely ironic that the first really public mention of the sewer transfer comes from Councilmember Claude Jinks in an off-hand remark at the end of a Finance Committee meeting.

The LeBel Five refuse to allow the people to decide if changes should be made to what the people voted for in 2001 and on the sewer transfer.  Paul LeBel, Kay Senter, Bob Garrett, Chris Bivens, and Claude Jinks.

Two officials support the people's right to vote on changes to the Private Act. Mayor Danny Thomas and Councilmember Gene Brooks. 

And politicians wonder why people don't vote and say it doesn't matter what I say or how I vote, they (politicians) are going to do whatever they want to? 

The Morristown/LeBel Five/MUC/McGuffin/Sewer actions are just one example of why people are so cynical.

The "news"paper was not at the Finance meeting.

**The Finance Committee also discussed and took a vote recommending that the full council adopt a policy that will reduce the number of (non-law enforcement) take-home vehicles.

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