Comment: I strongly criticized the council for electing Ms. Bland as chair (9 Dec 2008) and vice chair (5 Dec 2007). Some council members were offended by my criticism. If her antics embarrass the county, the council members who voted for her and the people who elected them have nobody to blame but themselves.
Bland avoids vote on soccer stadium; More than a dozen residents outraged after 10-minute meeting without vote
Prince George's County Council members were unable to vote on legislation to study the impact of building a new 24,000-seat Major League Soccer stadium in Landover for the D.C. United team after Council Chairwoman Marilynn M. Bland (D-Dist.9) of Clinton refused to call a vote Tuesday and called a recess before residents had a chance to speak.
Bland (D-Dist. 9) of Clinton adjourned the meeting about 10 minutes after it started.
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More than a dozen residents who had signed up to speak against the stadium were left without a chance to speak to the council when the brief meeting ended.
"This is ridiculous," yelled Ruth Wright, a community activist who said she was disgusted by Bland's departure. "If we're going to sit here and be treated like this, they have lost their mind."
Other residents expressed disbelief at Bland's departure.
"Why would she not have the courtesy to say, 'I know why you're here?'" asked Elizabeth Rivera of Fort Washington. "Her behavior today is really unacceptable. To get up and walk out while we're all sitting here? It's just rude."
Joseph Kitchen of Landover said the abrupt end to the meeting raises concerns about county leaders.
"Dirty tricks like this make me know something here isn't right," he said.
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The meeting does little to help the county's reputation in the state, noted Mitchellville resident Brian Austin.
"I'm embarrassed for my county," he said.
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