Ten former mayors endorsed the malfeasance of the city manager in a letter to your publication last week. As we citizens and the signers themselves know, the title of mayor is simply ceremonial, apparently until it benefits someone’s political purpose to self-aggrandize as in the aforesaid letter.

Every one of those former mayors failed and refused to uphold their oaths to enforce our city zoning code, choosing instead to nurture the metastasizing cancer that is the “motels in our residential neighborhoods” industry. At least six of them knowingly ignored then city attorney Hogin’s specific statement (by email of Oct. 28, 2016, shared with all six) that it was not her decision as lawyer as to whether or not to enforce the zoning code but theirs as council members. Those six are former city council members House, Mullen, Peak, Sibert, La Monte and Rosenthal. They refused (along with the city manager) to enforce the code in contravention of their duties and the oath they took.  Rosenthal went so far as to remark at a council meeting that she was concerned that unspecified friends of hers would lose money if the code were enforced. Present council members Pierson and Farrer cheerfully joined in this willful refusal to enforce our existing law although they also were made aware of Ms. Hogin’s Oct. 28, 2016, remarks.

The city manager practically drooled at a council meeting a few years ago when discussing the money (evidently her sole motivator) that might come to the city from the council endorsing such illegal activities. That is not evidence of the integrity claimed by the letter submitters, but of its opposite. The money so prized by the manager comes from the citizens’ loss of the quiet enjoyment of their neighborhoods and of support for our schools that would come from families/citizens occupying these illicit motels.

We deserved better from you council members and from our city manager. Instead, you sold us out to “Newportizers.”  Enjoy your 30 pieces of silver.

Bill Sampson

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