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Saturday, January 10, 2009

New year...same issues

In a letter sent to Council President Clement Campana earlier this week, Mayor Harry Tutunjian declared that his administration would ignore future memos from the council president unless they are accompanied by a follow-up phone call for verification.

The move reportedly came as a response to repeated occurrences over the last year of memos being sent to the mayor and other city officials from Campana without the council president's knowledge.

The most recent memo was sent to Corporation Counsel David Mitchell discussing how, in accordance with the City Charter, he had a "legal and ethical obligation to fulfill the duties" of his office when requested to draft legislation by the council. The memo closed by informing Mitchell that failure to abide by his obligation would be noted accordingly.

According to Tutunjian, when he questioned Campana about why the memo was sent, the council president had no idea what he was talking about.

"It is ethically inappropriate and a waste of taxpayer dollars that department heads and my staff must chase down information that you are not even aware you are asking for," wrote Tutunjian in his letter to Campana.

Campana said the situation was more of the same.

"We asked him to prepare legislation for the council majority and no matter what you do, it's too vague," said Campana. "The bottom line is that Mitchell works for the mayor and that's pretty much how it's going to be."

The original request for legislation sent to Mitchell on Dec. 16 was a once sentence request for him to draft a local law consistent with legislation from 1995, which as a whole dealt with several different topics and matters .

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