OK, so now it is finally over and I have watched all of the approximately 19 hours of the televised inquiry, I will now share my thoughts and observations.
I still find it ironic that John Caupp and Dale Louderback (C&L for short) bullied the council into televising the inquiry, then (under their counsels’ advice) chose to remain silent throughout the entire process. I ask what happened to the repeated promises of the “truth shall set you free?” The only truth I saw was that a true violation of the Xenia City Charter did indeed occur.
I have to wonder if C&L feel that Mr. Brey delivered a great defense of their ethics violation. I have never witnessed a more circular round of continuous questions from any attorney in real life, on television, or even in the movies. He was stopped multiple times and asked to move on, which was only met with his snide remarks and toddler-like behavior. All he had to do was present the facts quickly and efficiently.
I also found it both annoying and unprofessional for Mr. Brey to continue to take digs at opposing attorneys and the five remaining council members. This is very typical for C&L during most regular city council meetings. Councilman Smith was absolutely right when he stated that Mr. Brey behaved in the same fashion as C&L by displaying “bully tactics and threats!” The two of them often present threats, digs, and unprofessional comments to city staff and other council members who do not agree with them.
If C&L honestly wanted to help Xenia’s economy, they should have stepped down from council so they could fully dedicate their time (and egos) to running the entertainment center.
Councilman Caupp stated in his final argument, among other nonsense and manufactured lies, that Mr. Beauregard criticized Xenia’s Economic Development Department in one of their early meetings. How can you continue to tear down (your own) city staff? He and Councilman Louderback do so in nearly every single council meeting all while continuing to claim they are trying to bring investors, developers, and new citizens to the Xenia community. Repeatedly tearing down the city and its employees/government will never bring citizens — much less developers — to our community. That is basic logic.
Mr. Brey dedicated a great deal of time attempting to prove that the Feb. 12 meeting was not legal because there was no public vote to go into executive session. His two clients (C&L) participated in the alleged “illegal” meeting and would have also participated in the other “illegal” meetings; therefore, they are no better than any other member they are alleging violated the process.
An important FYI, the remaining five council members never said the citizens were not “smart enough” to vote on the new city hall building. Simply put, the council has had three years of meetings, architectural presentations, research, and work sessions to come to the final conclusion — to build a new city hall and turn the existing city hall into a justice center. They attempted to state that the citizens were not available to attend the numerous hours of discussion over this time period, which is a drastically different statement than “the citizens are not smart enough to vote on the issue.”
Also, C&L continue to leave out the fact that Xenia is still dedicating $500,000 to the city streets and curbs each year. Any logical person could determine that even if you approve a $5 million budget for the roads and curbs yearly, there is only so much that can be done each year, which is approximately $500,000 worth. It is my understanding that the “Taj Mahal” project will not raise taxes. There may need to be some minor adjustments here and there, but isn’t that always the case with city government and finances? We have a nice city and we should want to invest in it.
Mr. Brey and Councilman Caupp both made similar statements regarding the family entertainment center and whether or not Mr. Beauregard is still interested in completing the project. This was just one more scare tactic, as is typical per their bullying procedures.
Councilman Louderback, while sitting right next to Councilman Caupp, read a letter in the Aug. 13 meeting from Mr. Beauregard stating that the project is still set to go forward. Funny, how they attempt to scare their supporters and other members of the community in order to fulfill their agenda. If you care about your supporters, your citizens and your community, you do not behave in a manner that puts fear into innocent people for the sole purpose of fulfilling your personal goals and ego.
Having said all that, I feel much better. I wanted to wait until all the information was available through the inquiry. I did so, which is how I came to these easy and logical conclusions regarding Mr. Brey’s behavior, and Councilman Louderback and Councilman Caupp. I have the opinion that C&L want the community to put their faith in them as both city council members — well, no thank you.
Diane A. Ponder is a guest columnist for the Gazette.