residents who couldn’t get answers to their questions from city hall about their elected officials tried a work-around last week.
They called Fox 2 News reporter Elliott Davis.
“Several of us thought Elliott would be a good one to contact, since he specializes in municipal corruption issues in his KTVI ‘You Paid For It’ reports,” resident Barry Williams said. Davis agreed to meet with them.
He met the Brentwood group at Rich and Cheryl Emery’s home on York Drive on Wednesday. The group of about a dozen sat in couches with Davis at one end. Health care for elected officials was the main topic.
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“What the problem?” he asked.
“It’s really the inconsistencies of the spending of taxpayers money,” Rich Emery said. “We keep finding more and more that city hall has done that the citizens are outraged about, and it’s one issue after another.”
Davis asked why the officials don’t deserve the perks they’re getting.
They’re temporary employees, they’re not employees, they’re public officials, they’re there at the will of us, they work for us because we’re the tax payers, the group answered in rapid-fire.
“Who’s the biggest defender on the board of the deals they have?” Davis asked. “The mayor (Pat Kelly),” came from around the room.
Julie Pozzo said the problem with the health care benefit is that it was never approved by the board.
Davis asked how it came about if it never came up in a meeting, and together the group said that's what they'd like to know.
“It looks to us as though the mayor wanted this as a perk, so he went to the city manager, the one who was later arrested for embezzlement, and asked him to make it happen, and presto it happened,” Williams said, “without the aldermen even voting on it.”
(Tomorrow, read the mayor’s response, when Davis visited Kelly at his office at Eagle Bank.)
Another in the group told Davis that not all aldermen get the insurance.
Pozo and Williams told him they have requests into city hall for information. “They won’t tell us anything,” Williams said.
After Davis had what he needed from the group he asked for a spokesman for a one-on-one interview, and Williams’ name rose to the top.
He gave Davis the history of the insurance program then got to the point.
“The residents of Brentwood are just fed up,” he said.
“Every time we pick up the paper there’s a new scandal about our money being misused, and when we try to find out what’s going on, when we ask simple basic questions about our money, the city officials won’t tell us.”
“That sums it up,” Davis said.
Davis said the produced segment will run on Fox 2 at 9 p.m. on Wednesday.
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