Ted Siefer's City Hall: Hold your horses, Tex; just how weird was it?
At Tuesday's meeting, Greazzo made his case that Levasseur should be referred to the conduct board, arguing that by obtaining the insurance information and gabbing about it at the previous meeting, he had violated a section of the charter concerning the disclosure of confidential information.
"My position is that sending someone to the conduct board is very serious," said Ward 1 Alderman Joyce Craig. "To me, this is a 'he-said-she-said' situation."
The move essentially dropped the matter into the lap of Mayor Ted Gatsas, a man with whom Levasseur has had his share of quarrels of late.
Levasseur has indicated that he's not interested in participating in such a tribunal. "I'm not about to go into a hostile office, with a hostile mayor that did everything in his power to make sure I did not win reelection, and discuss anything that he can twist to his own political benefit and become a he said, she said ordeal," he said in an email.
Gatsas has given no indication of how he'll proceed.
The charter states that if the mayor's review does not resolve the matter, it shall be referred to the city's chief legal officer, who in turn must make a report to the aldermen within 90 days. But speaking to the whole fracas over the dog park, Gatsas had some supportive words for Greazzo.
So was there any legitimacy to the claims that the MDPA's insurance had lapsed? It doesn't look like it. This was the lukewarm conclusion of Deputy City Solicitor Tom Arnold at the Accounts Committee meeting earlier in the day. Greazzo had furnished documents indicating that the MDPA had been covered since before the dog park opened.
Arnold said he appreciated Greazzo's "candor" on the issue, but he wanted the review to put any concerns to rest.
Continuing the theme of novel occurrences, Tuesday's meeting also saw Welfare Commissioner Paul Martineau come hat in hand to the aldermen. He was projecting a $270,000 deficit for the year because of increased demand for emergency shelter, burials and other assistance. Martineau, as you may know, has made the savings he's brought to the department and his rigorous review process a central plank in his many campaigns for office, including the one he just won.
But the city clerk said such a vacancy would be filled by the aldermen, not an election.
In the end, Martineau avoided a haircut, but only by a hair. The vote was 6-6, with two abstentions.
But he did make his views known during the meeting about the prospect of a $34,000 pay cut.
"No, I'm not OK with that," he said. "When I took over the position, I also got on Yarger Decker. I just want to be treated like any other."
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