Our mom is on her way to Karatu, Tanzania, via Dar es Salaam. Please join us in wishing her a safe journey.
Congratulations to Council Member Roy Stewart on his overdue retirement. I have high hopes for an enthusiastic and responsive successor.
I ran against Stewart and he won with just 51% of the vote in 2011. Before I ran, I never had a single e-mail returned from him and during the election at the polling site, his supporters called to voters to “come meet Roy Stewart”. If you’ve been in office for 15 years, why would your constituents meet you for the first time, only when it’s reelection time?
During the campaign, a reporter asked him to account for his expenditures on city business, to reconcile Grapevine’s reimbursements without receipts policy. He couldn’t or wouldn’t.
Since then, his seldom commentary at meetings has included building shapes are like alphabetical letters and meetings have had to be stopped by the city secretary to get him to speak his vote.
Similarly, our last city secretary rejected transparent governance and served until her ill health became a factor in her service. Her successor has heard citizens requests and embraced video recordings of council meetings, publishing public information online like council packets without an open records request for every single meeting, and new agendas that flow better and are, in her words “modernized”.
I don’t understand the Grapevine Way of serving or holding a position, just because you can, for as long as you can.