At last night's City Council meeting Sierra Madre Mayor MaryAnn MacGillivray let the entire city know on live TV that she's pretty much had a bellyful of this paper's dishonest reporting. And apparently Sharon Neely, a high ranking executive at SCAG, was none too pleased when she heard about it, either. After all, it was her name that was used to bolster the core falsehood of the article in question. Here is how Mayor MacGillivray exposed this paper's disgraceful behavior for all the town to see:
The topic seems to have garnered an interest in the Mountain Views News as well. In the February 27 edition there is an article titled "Claims of Unique Sierra Madre Victory Misstated." The article is riddled with errors but ironically the title is correct - the paper is, in fact, misstating the actions of City Staff, the Mayor, City Council, and the subsequent "victory."
The paper refers to the withholding of the SCAG dues as a boycott by the Mayor and Mayor Pro Tem. A boycott is a refusal to negotiate. We used this delay of dues payment as a negotiating tool to see if the City could collaborate favorably with SCAG and it was with a majority vote of the City Council.
The article states that according to Sharon Neely, "Director of Legislation" at SCAG, every city that requested a reduction and justified it according to the guidelines was granted a reduction. I spoke directly with Sharon Neely last Thursday (whose correct title is Interim Deputy Executive Director for Policy, Strategy and Public Affairs), and, having shown her a copy of the paper, asked if the statement in the paper was true. She stated very firmly that she spoke with no one from the Mountain Views News and that she did not make that statement nor one similar to it, nor would she make that kind of statement. She suggested we speak with Angela Rushen, Manager of Media & Public Affairs, in case she had been contacted. So we found Angela who said Susan Henderson did, in fact, call her about 4PM on Friday, February 26. Angela said that she asked Ms. Henderson what her deadline was and when Ms. Henderson responded that it was midnight, Angela informed her that they were closing up and would not be able to give her a statement. Hence the last line of the article indicating that confirmation of the new numbers were not available at press time.
This is a blatant falsification of the facts and cannot be tolerated. The citizens of Sierra Madre deserve accurate reporting on all issues and especially those that can adversely affect the quality of life that we are all trying to sustain.
That the City of Sierra Madre has as its adjudicated paper of record a publication that would tell such an ignominious whopper in order to once again exhibit its resentment of certain members of our City government is tragic. That it is the recipient of our tax dollars for legal notices, which for all intents and purposes makes each and every one of us a functioning patron, only adds to this sense of betrayal.
The conversation of SCAG and SB 375 dominated the early portion of last night's meeting. Much of what was discussed has been covered here before, and we won't go into it now. But there was a comedic element in all of these deliberations, and it involved Joe Mosca. Joe, who has worked very hard to claim largely undeserved credit on the SCAG issue, appeared upset with the Mayor when he wasn't allowed to take the SMTV3 limelight on the topic. As a SGVCOG regionally (and not Sierra Madre) appointed member of the SCAG's RHNA numbers producing Community, Economic, and Human Development committee (CEHD), he felt it was his privilege to be the one speaking on the matter, and not MaryAnn. And, as is his wont when his hopes are thwarted, he got a little petulant about it.
Of course, and as any reader of The Tattler knows, had Joe actually been attending SCAG's CEHD meetings during the nearly two years when that responsibility was left to him alone, maybe MaryAnn MacGillivray and Don Watts wouldn't have to be attending them now. Instead he shined them off, leaving us virtually unrepresented at these important functions. For Joe to want all the glory last evening when he didn't do the work necessary to earn it seemed almost childlike.
Maybe when Joe gets older he'll realize one's actions do have consequences in the adult world, and that his predicament last night was really all of his own doing.