Friday, September 02, 2005

More on McNees

S-2, a local, business related e-mail newsletter comments today about McNees' new blog:

McNees blogs back: He’s tired of being called “defensive” when he tries to respond to criticism. He’s tired of people forming opinions about the city based on what they read in daily newspaper columns. He’s tired of the rampant confusion in the community about so many issues he deals with every day. So Sarasota city manager Mike McNees has a new platform – a blog. McNees intends to use the blog to explain issues from the city’s perspective and to engage in open, civil dialogue with anyone who cares to comment on the blog. Good for McNees; good for the community. Read the new blog here:

Maybe the real question is why does all this controversy and confusion exist? Are the issues real or just perception? If it is perception, and not reality, then communication must be the answer. Any and all attempts to improve communication are welcomed. That, of course begs the question, if the issues are only perception how did we get to the point where now find ourselves? Can McNees find a way to convince his critics with his new attempts at better communication and will these changes improve city teamwork and give us the good government we all expect?

Today's editorial in the SHT asks some important questions. We would like to see McNees respond to these questions either in the newspaper or on his blog or both. The editorial specifically comments on the most recent flap over a memo that was "essentially dictated" by McNees, but sent by the deputy City Manager. The memo concerned the on-going attempt to re-zone a small parcel in downtown Sarasota.

This editorial speaks about McNees' "lapse in good management style", his memo "appears to undermine the planning staff's attempt to carry out principles long supported by the City Commission, which in 2001 approved the downtown master plan", and the "memo and the response by Planning Director Jane Robinson reveal disturbing signs of tension and misunderstanding between the city manager and the department."

This issues are real and not just perception.

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