meeting decorum of elected officials

Radnor Township is NOT in Chester County. But I am venturing there this morning because of behavior of a sitting elected official at a public meeting last night. It was wholly unacceptable. (If you have FiOs you can catch Radnor’s meetings on Channel 30 FYI.)

When an elected official goes from serving the public to being a consistent self-serving obstructionist, they really should resign.

I actually used to honestly respect this elected official. He was for many years a crusader for right.  But then it seems he began to believe his own press releases or something? His wife sits on the school board. That has also always given me pause when certain issues have come before the board, and isn’t that also understandable?

Someone on social media remarked last evening after the latest tirade/outburst that they were channeling their inner Yosemite Sam. That’s not who we want representing us in office even on the most local of levels anywhere. The behavior was bad enough last evening, that the board actually took a five minute recess so everyone could regain their composure.

One of the temper tantrum’s last night was over who the Public Information Officer reports to. Everyone knows that public information officer’s report to the township, and the Township manager. They don’t report to elected officials because they are neutral and all they must always fairly disseminate information to the public.

I’m also writing this post because Radnor Township after having a disastrous manager they fired was lucky to hire a man named Bob Zienkowski. He is one of the finest township managers I have ever seen. I actually think so highly of this gentleman that years ago before the current township secretary had her job, I interviewed for the job. The current township secretary actually got chosen over me as a candidate, and in retrospect life worked out just the way it was supposed to. She is also excellent at her job. And given the way Radnor Township has deteriorated and the crazy hours the meetings go to, I am VERY glad life chose differently for me in the end. I can’t sit through these meetings anymore… anywhere.

But last night I saw this one commissioner in particular be condescending, rude, and generally hateful and disrespectful to the Township Manager. With LOUD and SHOUTING OUTBURSTS.

If you watch the township meeting on YouTube you can see the meltdown beginning at the 14:59 minute mark. It goes to about 24:17. Mind you it’s not the first obstructionist disruption of the evening on the part of this commissioner. It’s not the first meeting this behavior has occurred, either. The Radnor meetings now have the reputation of being the most awful around again and with good reason.

I am sure this commissioner will have a problem with this post. But as a lover and defender of the First Amendment, surely he must realize I have a right to express my opinion, correct?

Commissioner Richard Booker, this post is for you. Suffice it to say, Radnor residents deserve better.  Hard working township staff deserves better. Your fellow commissioners deserve better.  At a minimum you should apologize publicly to all of the other commissioners and township staff. However, you also might wish to consider resigning or retiring as you seem to have lost your objectivity completely. Last night’s behavior shows you appear to be a really unhappy human being and why do you wish to project that upon residents, fellow commissioners, and Radnor Township staff? Is that really fair? Is that really the best use of public meeting time?

And yes, Commissioner Booker, the First Amendment does allow me my opinion. You are an elected official who among other things was hired to uphold the public trust and can you honestly say you are doing that at this point? And do you really work for Sunoco Logistics like it says on your LinkedIn page and elsewhere?

And my last word is elected officials everywhere demand proper decorum of residents at meetings.  Well shouldn’t residents be able to expect that of elected officials?

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