I live in Mamaroneck, but Rye is practically my second home. I have Rye friends. I bring my granddaughters to school and dance classes in Rye. I eat at OKO, shop at Pink, and read The Rye Record. I even watch Rye City Council meetings, I guess because until a year or so ago, they seemed so smooth and effective and civil (which made a nice contrast to a board I serve on).
Of course, they’re not so civil now. Take the last meeting I watched (Dec. 20). The mayor announced his appointments to boards and commissions. Two councilmen objected. They said they hadn’t been given time to vet the appointments. The city’s lawyer corrected them. She said the mayor makes those appointments. She added that the city charter doesn’t say there has to be formal approval. But the complaining continued. So, the mayor let the council vote on his choices, even though it wasn’t customary. They voted 5-2 to confirm.
Seeing two people try to obstruct a pro forma agenda item, and the mayor maintaining his cool and keeping the meeting on track, I thought “Well done!” I filed it away as a lesson for handling disagreements on my own board.
Then in the January 11 Rye Record I read “Mayor Makes 11th Hour Appointments to City Boards.” Ignoring what the city’s lawyer had said, this article makes the two councilmen’s protests sound legitimate, and paints the mayor as a villain. No neutral observer would have come to that conclusion.
– Gina Lemon