by: Diane Benjamin
The constituent involved in the email exchange with Tari Renner just sent me the entire email. He did leave off some information at the top-but that information had nothing to do with the part I posted.
Here’s the facts: David Sage emailed Tari Renner and asked if the email on my post was real. Tari told him I had changed it. I hope David Sage now knows he was lied to.
Here’s the post with a link to the original post containing the Renner email. https://blnnews.com/2014/05/07/truth-tari/
Here’s is the entire email:
I believe that there are a number of misunderstanding in your email.
First of all, I never indicated that I thought that the Tea Party was composed of “wackos” – quite the contrary.
I trusted Diane enough to confide in her about things and that was clearly not warranted. I said I would never make that mistake again – and I won’t.
She has a right to write whatever she wants but I don’t have to trust her judgment or actions. Further, her arguments make no logical sense (hence “I don’t know what planet she’s on”) Finally on the email, this was a personal communication to someone and not a public conversation. Diane got ahold of it and made it public (as she did with many private emails I sent to her)! I would NEVER make a private email public just to make a political point. I believe that’s a violation of trust!
As far as the substance, Scott Oglesby is a friend of mine and supported me in each of my campaigns. The decision to appeal was made the by previous council and mayor.
I pushed to reconsider that decision but I had to be careful not to push too hard so that it didn’t appear that I was just trying to help a friend/supporter.
Last summer, I did redistribute to the entire council the arbitrator’s report and asked everyone to re-read it and
reconsider. That still didn’t move the council.
As a matter of common practice in American government at all levels, personnel decisions (unless they involve
high profile department heads and scandal or something) are not discussed in public (for all kinds of reasons –
you open yourself up to legal challenges suits etc., you may have difficulty hiring qualified people if they think
they may be trashed in public, etc.). Any legal counsel I’ve ever received as an elected official or when I
worked for the International City/County Management Association back in the last 1980s made that point crystal
I totally agree that this appeal was an irresponsible waste of money. But, the council majority at the time
buckled to public pressure and pursed the appeal. My attempt to persuade them otherwise was unsuccessful. (Just FYI, it may be obvious to you that Scott did nothing wrong – and I agree – but the overwhelming public outcry at the time was in the opposite direction and the council responded – inaccurately I believe.)
Consequently, I don’t agree with you that I don’t walk the walk on transparency. Everything I’ve done as mayor
is exactly what I said I’d do during the campaign and I make everything public that I can – sometimes to a fault!
I’ve been criticized over and over again by many in City Hall and on the Council because I make everything public
and am crystal clear about everything and my motivations.
If you change your mind, I am always willing to meet with you – or anyone. My door is always open!