In my last post, I asked if civility in the current Oklahoma City Council was a lost cause. Now, just moments ago, the City Council has gone on record as saying, “Yes, it is,” at least for the time being.
Councilmen Ed Shadid and Pete White’s May 31, 2011, proposal concerning deferrals had been watered down and minimized as follows (as abstracted/paraphrased in the council’s written agenda today):
Joint Resolution with the Oklahoma City Municipal Facilities Authority and Oklahoma City Public Property Authority adopting a rule of procedure granting any Councilmember or Trustee one uncontested continuance for any contract or resolution, but only at its first setting on any City Council, Oklahoma City Municipal Facilities Authority, or Oklahoma City Public Property Authority agenda, which continuance may be invoked at the unilateral request of the Councilmember or Trustee desiring the continuance; providing that a Councilmember or Trustee desiring one uncontested continuance of a contract or resolution at its first setting shall make his or her request for the continuance when the standard agenda item for “Requests for Uncontested Continuances” is taken up at the meeting of the public body; and further providing for the possible suspension of such rule of procedure and the immediate consideration of the contract or resolution, with the suspension to be invoked by motion of a Councilmember or Trustee, with a second required, and with approval thereof to require a two-thirds vote of the Councilmembers and/or Trustees, as applicable, present and voting.
In other words, one requested continuance would be automatic when an item first came upon the council’s agenda unless 2/3rds of the council voted to deny the request.
I’ll have the video for you when it becomes available, but the vote was 4-5 against the resolution, and against civility. Council members Ed Shadid, Pete White, Skip Kelly, and David Greenwell, voted for civility. Mayor Mick Cornett and council members Gary Marrs, Pat Ryan, Meg Salyer, and Larry McAtee, voted against civility.
|Council Members Voting For Civility|
|Council Members Voting Against Civility|
And there you have it. Shadid, White, and Kelly, based on their previous remarks, were expected to vote as they did … but that’s not necessarily the case with David Greenwell who voted against the July 5 requested continuances. Everyone can turn a page, and for this vote, he is due, and must receive, high civility marks for speaking and voting his conscience on this August 2 vote. David Greenwell gets them from me, anyway.
In my 1st edition of this post, I said that, when it became available, it would include the relevant city council discussion and would doubtless contain the words spoken by Gary Marrs, Pat Ryan, and Meg Salyer on May 31, one last time, to underscore that when a council member says one thing at one time, it is not to be counted on at a later time when it really matters. Turns out, the video clip below of the city council discussion on the deferral resolution already includes them.
Ordinarily, the proponents of a measure have the 1st say when discussing a matter on the agenda, but, in this instance, Pat Ryan, with the mayor’s permission, rudely butted himself to the front of the line and the mayor granted him the 1st opportunity to speak.
In the above discussion, you didn’t hear Gary Marrs or Meg Salyer express an opinion on the matter, even though both did on May 31, 2011. Their May 31 words and those spoken by Pat Ryan were quoted in the above comments by Ed Shadid. If you distrust his or my rendering of their words or their contexts, see the videos of the actual words spoken by each of them on May 31:
On this day, both Gary Marrs and Meg Salyer were silent in this discussion.
The word that comes to mind is, “hypocrisy,” i.e., say one thing on May 31 but disingenuously mean another.
In my estimation, this is a bad day for Oklahoma City government.