Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Someone is mad at the mayor...

Transparent government is sure to be a cornerstone of Council vp Arnie Fielkow's mayoral run and today our current leader provided him with a bit more ammo.

Here are some choice passages from the statement Fielkow released following Nagin's announcement that, in the name of recovery, open government would not come to the city of NO.

"Under the proposed new Executive Order contained in Monday’s Times Picayune back page, and in an effort to avoid the Louisiana Open Meetings laws, the Mayor, instead of embracing enhanced openness and transparency, has taken several steps backwards. The Mayor has returned the city’s professional service contracting process to an era of closed door decision-making. Indeed, if the proposed new Executive Order goes into effect, the only individuals reviewing and consulting on the proposals will be employees appointed directly by the Mayor, namely the CAO, the City Attorney and/or the ORDA Director. Their evaluation of contracts and input to the Mayor may be either verbal or written, thus ensuring that the public, including the Inspector General, will now be totally excluded from the selection process."

"The City Council’s actions two weeks ago ensured that the contracting process would be open and transparent and that the public could be informed and engaged as to how their dollars are being used. Meetings would have been publicly noticed, citizens would have been able to view and participate and minutes of all meetings would have been kept. Sadly, despite the Mayor’s stated intentions to achieve openness and transparency, his current actions contradict his words and negatively affect a citizen base which desperately seeks to have its city government operate in the sunshine."

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