Viewpoint - January 12, 2011

Letter: Can this council work?

If diminished capacity to function effectively as a city council is real civic damage, and I would argue that it is, the mess that the Menlo Park City Council made out of electing a mayor for 2011 caused much more than a "little, if any, 'real' damage."

Ms. Ferguson will, as The Almanac editorialized, "find it difficult to perform effectively." Mr. Ohtaki and Ms. Keith showed themselves to be raw rookies at public service. In failing to step aside in favor of Mr. Cohen, who was, by custom, next in line to be mayor after Ms. Ferguson, Mr. Cline demonstrated a lack of class that will limit his potential for leadership.

The bottom line is that, at a time in our local history when we desperately need a strong council to establish and enforce policy for a staff that, given its own lead, seems intent on ignoring residential and local business interests, we are burdened with a group of five councilors who may well be unable to work cohesively.

James Madison, Holly Avenue, Menlo Park


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