Monday, February 24, 2014
Bethlehem City Council Forces Uninformed Votes
While it is certainly within City Council's prerogative to choose their own legal adviser, it is disturbing to learn that at least one member was forced to vote against her will.
Cathy Reuscher, newly appointed to Council, said she felt uneasy voting to terminate anyone, especially someone she did not know.
But Council Prez J. Willie Reynolds told her that, like it or not, she had to vote.
It's a rule.
Karen Dolan damned Spadoni with faint praise, claiming simultaneously to love him while complaining about his accessibility. Then when Reuscher wavered, Dolan blasted away.
"New members are required to vote. It is the law. It takes integrity to make strong decisions. This is not political, it is practical. It is an employment decision."
A City Council rule, last revised in 2012, does require yea and nay votes from City Council members. But that's complete nonsense.
It is completely improper to force any Council member to vote without any facts upon which to base her opinion.
Dolan, who has no law degree, is completely wrong about the law as well. Council rules only apply to the Council that adopted them, not future Councils. There is no way Dolan can enforce 2012 rules on a 2014 Council.
Notwithstanding these rules, Council has absolutely no authority to dictate how one of its own may vote. That hould be between her and her conscience.
It could be that Reuscher would eventually agree to replace Spadoni. But there was no integrity displayed by anyone when she was forced to vote before feeling ready.
That was just bullying.