Silverman "Cops Out" While Cohen Gets "Doug Out" ~ Annapolis Capital Punishment

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Silverman "Cops Out" While Cohen Gets "Doug Out"

Too many unusual things happened at last night's council meeting and too many things fell into place as rookie Alderman Mat Silverman played his role perfectly, as did Mayor Josh Cohen. When the smoke cleared, even the most in-the-know civic activists were left a bit bewildered.

Once again, by a close, split vote that would have been 4-5 (although Arnett voted nay to employ a little known procedural method to possibly reconsider the vote making it 3-6), voters and the thousands who have already signed a petition to bring the true council-manager style of government to referendum, were left out. This time however, Alderman Fred Paone, considered the decisive nay vote last time this came out, now voted in favor of council-manager (aka the Cordle bill) because he came to see the strong public support and the difficulty in bringing a charter amendment to the ballot.

Meanwhile, Silverman, who was quoted in The Capital as saying Judd Legum and Senator Jon Astle courted his vote, has shown us his true colors. They are Annapolis residents, though not in his ward, and Legum is not even in office, but is seeking state office. Why should their calls be more important than that of Dave Cordle, who sponsored the amendment, who is in his ward and whose seat he now occupies? More Democratic arm-twisting. I wonder what they promised the rookie alderman who some have likened to being the  new "Sam" a reference to former Alderman Sam Shropshire who was known for his highly malleable voting preferences. (You know-it depended on who he spoke to last...)Although Silverman admitted he was confused about this whole issue at first, he did come out in favor of council-manager while campaigning and CP had a long talk with Silverman as well, in which it was necessary to explain to the candidate the fundamental differences between a council-manager systems and a mayor-council style. But, politics won out and the rookie alderman got his chance in the limelight to be courted and show us his mettle. (Or is that metal? As in copper? You know, highly conductive, ductile and malleable)

Now, moving on. The Arnett shadow finance committee did a good job of showing us the severity of our budget situation. There was more brain power in any one of that handful of financial-whiz residents than there is on the entire council. I mean, look at who Cohen re-appointed to chair the Finance Committee. Once again, as she never disappoints, Alderwoman Classie Hoyle consistently shows the voters that the lights are on but nobody is home every time she opens her mouth.

The mayor continues to both impress and disappoint. As I sat behind three of his hand-picked staffers last night, I wondered how they each got nice jobs while real city employees continue to be in jeopardy and the highest paid employees seem secure. Shake my head some more. What is going on here? We are running out of cash. We have no reserves. The one alderman who  consistently and early on has been warning us has to assemble citizen volunteers to do the job of the council and the mayor is quoted as saying their predictions are too dismal. I know who I'd rather believe.

So I looked at Hoyle and Finlayson who voted for the current Moyer budget, along with Israel who also disappointed me and many others when he cast his approving vote and wondered how we could let them not only raise more money by borrowing but once again, Finlayson, Hoyle and also the mayor, Kirby and Silverman deprive us of the one way to really address this mess by giving them the power to oversee a true city manager who would propose the budget, rather than the mayor!

Hmm. Let's see. Sure. You can borrow more money to pay for your continuing mistakes and mismanagement. But for Astle and Legum to sway Silverman? One can only wonder what they said, how they did it, and what they offered. Must have made Silverman feel real important. For a variety of reasons, I won't be surprised if he vacates his term early.

LISTEN TO CP Publisher Paul Foer on 1430WNAV at 8:15 every weekday morning or click on the WNAV icon to the right. READ CP Publisher Paul Foer's "The Ninth Ward" every Wednesday in The Identified comments are always welcome. ALL ANONYMOUS COMMENTS will be automatically rejected without being opened.


William D said...

It is unfortunate that Dave had to give up the seat to run for mayor. Conley was not a contender, so the ACD could have run an untrained monkey for the seat and likely won.

Silverman has never answered the lingering questions about his job skipping. The Capital refused to endorse him because even after the interview, they still knew nothing about him.

Silverman might have a difficult time spelling "democrat" but he seems to enjoy being in the majority and will vote along with the gang of five every time.

Oh, I would while away the hours, conferring with the flowers....

Paul Foer said...

Please fully identify yourself. It is easy to criticize public figures but they are out there in public view everyday. Citizens who criticize them should be accountable as well.

Scott Bowling said...

Although I am neither a resident of Ward 5 nor a Democrat, I must write in and defend Alderman Silverman (D-5). While I would also have preferred that he voted for CA-09-09 (Cordle's Bill) he was a co-sponsor of the prevailing bill and along with Alderman Pfeiffer did offer ammendmants to strengthen the final legislation.

In reference to him being a guaranteed vote and part of the "gang of 5", I will point out that he voted against almost all of his democratic colleagues in opposing the resolution allowing the City to borrow on a $10 million dollar credit line.

It is OK to disagree with an Alderman's vote, but let's also give them credit where credit is due. I would much rather have a fiscally conservative Alderman who is not willing to impose a $20 per $100 stealth tax increase on the tax payers of Annapolis.

Paul Foer said...

Scott I do not believe I referenced him as being a guaranteed vote or part of a "Gang of Five."

Scott Bowling said...


You did not mention him in that light, however, in William D's comment it was stated.


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