"What is it going to take for this resolution to go away?"
This is very strange. At the last city council meeting, freshman Ward Six Independent city councilor Karen Paul led a successful effort to table the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the city and the Childrens Museum slated to go in the old Moran Plant on the waterfront.
She was upset because the city attorney's office had apparently reneged on an agreement to have outside council review the agreement. From the Burlington Free Press:
"...He [Councilor Adrian] and other councilors said Paul, chairwoman of the council’s Parks Committee, had an understanding with the city attorney that the city would use outside legal help to examine the initial agreements. After the administration reneged, Paul exchanged e-mails with other councilors over the weekend urging a tabling — an indefinite postponement — of the agreement with the museum until the administration agreed to an outside counsel. Her perspective was persuasive to nine of her colleagues.
“I have told the city attorney I will not put my name on an agreement that has not been seen by an outside attorney with years of experience in this field,” Paul said Tuesday. “Our potential tenants are getting this kind of advice. Why shouldn’t we?”..."
The article went on to quote Community and Economic Development Office director Larry Kupferman...
Kupferman, who agreed the council vote Monday was important, said, “It seems to me folks might want to know what the reasoning is. Outside counsel has not been part of our thinking. Nor has it been brought up by anyone else, until last night.”
From the email Karen Paul sent the city council Sunday...
"...Putting aside my act of good faith and taking the City Attorney at his word, I have consulted with three local attorneys with many years of experience in contract law who have told me independent of one anther that this MOU is seriously lacking in several areas..." [Emphasis added]But now BurlingtonPol has learned Karen Paul will reverse herself and move for passage of the MOU at this Monday's city council meeting. Just four days after her first email calling for the MOU's tabling, she wrote to the council again Thursday...
"...I spoke earlier today with Ken [Schatz] and Larry [Kupferman] about the MOU. Ken has fully consulted with Thomas Melloni on this MOU. Thomas did make some additions that add clarity and deepen the understanding between the parties. I also discussed some of the more minor changes with Ken that I had received from other attorneys I spoke with. We have come to an understanding about those points and have made adjustments in the MOU when warranted..."
"...I have asked Ken, after consulting with the President of the Council, to please place the MOU on our agenda for this coming Monday..."
"...I urge you to fully support this MOU and vote in favor of its passage at the City Council meeting on Monday night..." [Emphasis added.]
Ok. So these two emails obviously don't square. Since when do "minor changes" ameliorate an MOU that is "seriously lacking?" Paul provides no specifics or timeline for the 'full consultation' the city has supposedly now had with attorney Melloni. Apparently it all happened on Tuesday and Wednesday. Sure. That's more than enough time for the city to reverse course from "outside council has not been part of our thinking" to "it's fine now, let's all pass the MOU and buy the world a Coke."
If I didn't know better, I might think Karen Paul found a severed horse head lying next to her when she woke up Thursday morning. I mean WTF is going on here? Leave a comment if you know...
PS- I was trying to tell Poopsie just what the heck I'm blogging here, and becoming annoyed with my long-winded explanation- she asked me to break it down to her in simple terms. "Just tell me who the bad guy is," she said jokingly.
"Jonathon Leopold" I said, for the sake of simplicity.
"And who's the good guy?"
"That's easy," I said. "I am."
First of all I don't really think in terms of "bad guys" and "good guys" and I don't really think of Jonathon Leopold as a bad guy. That was a joke.
Secondly, item 9 was removed form the council's agenda tonight...
9. RESOLUTION: Authorization for Execution of a MOU Between the City and the Green
Mountain Children’s Museum re: Moran Redevelopment Project (Board
of Finance) (to take from the table)(MOU to be sent out on Friday,
September 19, 2008)
Labels: City Council, Jonathan Leopold