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Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Councilwoman-Elect Karen Toles Releases Statement on Recent County News

Several days ago I posed several questions to Karen Toles staff.  I posted to these mailing lists, without comment, the replies I received.  The second, substantive reply was also reported yesterday by the Post's Miranda Spicack.

Now, as one of Ms. Toles' constituents, I must say that I am personally deeply disappointed by her responses and by news reports suggesting that she supports both Leslie Johnson and Ingrid Turner.

Enough has been said about Leslie Johnson that I don't think I need to say anything more.

As for Ingrid Turner, in my opinion, the selection of Ingrid Turner as council chair would clearly tell the world that it will be business as usual, and all the talk about ridding the county of corruption and making it great is a bunch of BS.

Both the Post (May 1 and May 4) and the Gazette (Jun 21) carried reports about a civil lawsuit by developer Arun Luthra alleging that he never received council approval for a lease for county office space because he did not make shakedown payments, resisted pressure from council members to hire a specific lobbyist, and was asked for other consideration.  Ingrid Turner is one of the named defendants in that lawsuit.  The Gazette also reported that the state prosecutor was looking into the case.  The whole case looks suspicious, but was justified by the people involved because "everybody does it." 

Selecting Ingrid Turner for council chair will likely send a signal that "everybody's gonna continue to do it." 

In my opinion, it is time for the council to break with the past, speak out for and demonstrate integrity, and select leaders--chair, vice-chair, committee leaders--untainted by past or pending scandals.

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