Saturday, February 16, 2008

From the sublime to the ridiculous

It isn't often that I'm taken aback at some of the foibles of Phoeniville Borough Council, but a glance at the headline on this morning's Phoenix caused me to stop in mid-stride and immediately read the article.

Afterwards, having a momentary daydream, I mentally joined the suspension of reality party at Borough hall and contemplated the possibility of rescinding ALL appointments to every board and commission in the Borough. At this point nothing would surprise me. Borough government is not a playground, folks. It's not a social club, and appointments to very important advisory committees should not be political football.

The article, "Martynick seat also at issue" is the latest installment of what seems to be the "return John Messina at any cost to the Planning Commission" saga.

From the sublimely logical and diplomatic questions of George Martynick, “I’m not certain what Council can [legally] do, what is legitimate to do, having made the appointments,” he said...“How do you turn around a unanimous decision?”, to the ridiculous overall doggedness of five members of Council to return Messina to a role in Phoenixville government, the unfolding drama begs a few questions.

First of all, why?

Why would Ciruelos, Gill, Handwerk, Kirkner, and Wagner even attempt to appoint anyone to a Borough board without following their own recommendations to hold interviews prior to appointment?

Is loyalty to a former Council Member so important that they risk derision and ridicule by making a mockery of an agreed on process?

I feel as though I'm beating a dead horse here, and at the risk of redundancy, I ask, hasn't Council learned anything from the appointment of the former Borough Manager?

Bring some commonsense to this issue.

Council has two choices.

1) Consult the Borough attorney. Learn what the parameters are in dealing with an appointment/removal to a Borough Commission/Board as Martynick suggested. Don't make the matter worse by acting without a consultation on the issue;

2) let the appointment stand and deal with the consequences of the action.

John Messina also has two options.

1) Keep the appointment;

2) resign.

I've posted the following "rule" in the past, and here it is, again.

Murphy's Law: The first rule of holes is: When you're in one, stop digging.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hey, as long as we're holding up every single appointment until public interviews are held, let's rethink the office of the borough president and vice president. I would like to see council members publicly interviewed for those positions as well.

Anonymous said...

Hey, as long as we're holding up every single appointment until public interviews are held, let's rethink the office of the borough president and vice president. I would like to see council members publicly interviewed for those positions as well.

Karen said...

While consulting the Borough Solicitor Council may also want to ask for a ruling on voting procedures.

My understanding of the process is that a Council Member may vote yes, no, or abstain.

Speck's unprecedented (to my memory) vote of "present" on Messina's appointment may be invalid and perhaps a way to revisit the motion.

Anonymous said...

Karen, this is the most rational post I've seen on this whole debacle yet.

Everybody else -- shut up until the Solicitor can brief us on the law in this situation.

It doesn't matter what anyone THINKS in this instance -- see what the law is and follow it according.

It's the lack of common sense and respect for Commonwealth law that got Phoenixville into this mess in the first place. Could we kindly stop digging at this hole?????

A message from Mister Card said...

Contributions to the Democratic Council Members - $8,000
Rented Tux to take King John to a function in DC – A couple hundred dollars.
A dead squirell to cover King Johns’ head – Another couple hundred buck.
The ability for Planning Commission Chair and Council President say, ‘This I can get done. I will deliver.’ – Priceless!