95°F
weather icon Clear

Transparency seems AWOL

Updated July 11, 2019 - 10:53 am

Tuesday night’s selection of a new council member to fill the seat vacated by Kiernan McManus when he was elected mayor certainly raises some eyebrows.

After a tie vote with two apiece for Judy Dechaine and Tracy Folda, Folda’s name was drawn by lot.

It’s not the first time Lady Luck has played a role in determining who would become an official within the state. A coin flip, dice roll and cut in deck of cards have all been used to select the winner.

But more importantly, the lack of reasons behind the nominations of either candidate causes one to pause. No qualifications were given. No indication of interest in the spot was expressed. Only vague references of conversations with community residents were mentioned. Where is the transparency in government the newly elected council members called for during their campaigns?

It appears they are doing the same things that the previous council was accused of doing: making backroom deals and cronyism. Accusations of this are already appearing on social media.

Ideally, a good approach might have been to appoint the candidate that came in third place in the election. Peggy Leavitt only lost by 39 votes, and she would have brought eight years of experience with her.

However, we understand the anti-incumbent sentiment in town and why that was never really a possibility.

Councilman Warren Harhay, who voted against appointing a person to fill the vacancy at the June 25 City Council meeting, said he thought a special election should be held in order for the process to be transparent. He said every current member of the council had been endorsed by a local Facebook group, the Boulder City Community Alliance, and it could be perceived the council needs to pay the group back. He also said he believed the founders of the group had already expressed a desire to fill the seat.

At the same meeting, Mayor Kiernan McManus said he doesn’t believe a group’s endorsement has any significance or anything to do with the selection process.

And yet, June posts on the alliance’s Facebook page, indicate that McManus encouraged Folda and another co-founder of the group to “file” for the position because they believed Dechaine was “wrong” for the community.

The question is whether the community watchdogs who were so carefully monitoring the activities of the previous council members will continue their vigilance or will they just sit back and smile. Is participating in illegal and unethical behavior OK when those doing it espouse your views?

We hold no ill will against the new council members and mayor. In fact, we wish them nothing but success in their endeavors to keep Boulder City the great place it is. But, just as we have done with previous city leadership, we will be watching.

Hali Bernstein Saylor is editor of the Boulder City Review. She can be reached at hsaylor@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9523. Follow @HalisComment on Twitter.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
 
More simple, carefree days needed

Life here on Earth hasn’t gotten much better in the past few months as COVID-19 continues to ravage communities and limit some of our activities.

Each of us can do our part to fight COVID

Are we able to make a difference in the threat that the COVID-19 virus presents? I believe we can make a big difference in lessening that threat. In fact, we are making a difference.

Let’s not make another mistake with SNWA

Every resident and business in Boulder City pays a wastewater charge. Boulder City wastewater is treated to Southern Nevada Health District standards for discharge into the desert and returned back to the aquifer.

Facts over fear

After reading last week’s lead article about the Boulder City Wastewater Pipeline proposal, I knew that it was incumbent upon me to defend both my support for the proposal as the city’s representative on the Southern Nevada Water Authority board and my honor. This proposal is an opportunity to divert over one million gallons a day (peak flow) of our wastewater (effluent) back to Lake Mead at no expense to Boulder City and was recommended by the Integrated Resource Planning Advisory Committee on which we, as a city, also have representation.

Nature’s wonders abound

Call me crazy, but Friday night I convinced my husband and parents to go out to a remote area of the desert in the blackness of night to see a comet.

Nation does not need groups the espouse division

“Black Lives Matter.” The statement itself is true; of course they matter. Brown lives matter. White lives matter. All lives matter. We all matter. It is important to understand that the group that calls itself “Black Lives Matter” has very little to do with black lives. It has virtually nothing to do with a skin color or race.

Summer heat makes us want to (s)cream

To say that summer arrived with a vengeance would be an understatement. On Sunday, the mercury topped out at 115 F at the official weather station at the municipal airport, and it reached 120 F when I was driving in my car that afternoon.

Sharing knowledge part of identity

Did you ever wonder who you are and what your life is about?

Congress appears to be absent

This is what I have observed from a number of open sources regarding congressional sessions.