Verbal Fireworks Implode at Final 2016 Huntington City Council Meeting

Updated 2 years ago HNN Staff
Verbal Fireworks Implode at Final 2016 Huntington City Council Meeting

The Huntington City Council meeting about the sewer rate increase contained fireworks. They weren't the kind you see, but they were definitely the kind you can hear...and they were explosive.

The highlight of the show was Tom McCallister getting arrested. Tom  McCallister, as he always wants to take someone outside, apparently, asked some police officers to go outside. They  responded by asking him to go to Magistrate Court with them...and he accepted. He claims officers would not permit him to re-enter the chamber as he had been called 'out of order' several times by chairman Mark Bates.

The theatrics continued. Joyce Clark jumped out of her seat in rage against McCallister, who objected to an interpretation of "tabling" under Roberts Rules of Order. The issue: Can the motion be commented upon, must the tabling be date specific, and a simple tabling must be brought back up at the same meeting.  Clark was not called out of line like the former mayoral candidate was. She did later apologize for her actions saying she wasn't feeling well. Hmmm....maybe she should have just stayed at home.

Councilwoman Frances Jackson used the word "hell" in the meeting and was called down by a Huntington resident...which is hilarious. A councilwoman scolded by someone she represents. The issue turned into a debate of whether "hell" qualified as a Bible-objectionable oath.

Jackson is all for the water increase although she lives in a high rise downtown and doesn't pay a water bill. David Ball said if you don't  want to pay extra for cable then it's a luxury we don't need.

Rebecca Thacker had been harassed by Ball following the replacement of Scott Caserta as chairman. Ball ran an ad in the Herald Dispatch containing a phrase "we need more balls at city hall." Thacker told Ball as the meeting was dispersing that, now, since he is off council ,he has time to go to Florida and grab beach balls. (Originally, she thought of bring a bag of balls and presenting them to Ball as a parting gift.)

The thrust of the re-elected at large council member turned the tables. She emphasized that the "ovaries" (females) would take over during the new council which has a female majority.

Outgoing councilman John Short expressed unhappiness  about Alex Vence and Jennifer  Wheeler not show up to get sworn in. Short  did not realize the cameras were still rolling.

All of this while giving the Mayor a $10,000 raise, authorizing a fifty cent step down cable fee to adequately equip a public access studio, and hiking the sanitation fees up by 57% over the  next  three  years. Maybe Huntington can raise money by syndicating  these meetings  as reality shows.

During the discussion of the sewer fee increase a labor representative emphasized that the 57% would prevent city layoffs. Of course, nothing in the "operating fund" specifies salaries, payroll, or other positions. It's all supposed to be consumed by day-to-day repair projects.

Finally, an outspoken Huntington resident who prefers to remain anonymous posted on her Facebook wall:

"Sooo Huntington is combating a heroin epidemic, the water isn't safe to drink, the roads will literally destroy your car by simply driving on them, yet the mayor gets a fucking 10k pay raise for... Doing his job as an elected official? God, I am SO done with this place it's not even fun."

Among responses to her vent came one concerning an unnamed sheriff's candidate in an unknown country who had been busted for heroin. As the post goes, he was let go due to "tampered evidence." The candidate lost the election.

A posting from England revealed budgets had been cut   leaving English roads with potholes in need of filling. However, they authorized five million pounds of U.S. foreign aide for use by an Ethiopian pop group.

During a portion of the post, the resident vented about having no fears at  [ticking off]  the good ole boys club"

Welcome to 2017.


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